22 August 2008
What's For Lunch?
Moose in the Kitchen is talking about food today, considering vegetarianism, veganism or every-other-Tuesday vegetarianism.
I have been a vegetarian for 20-some years. I went through my annoying Multi-Level-Marketing-like veg phase in the early days. You know, the person who everyone avoids because every conversation begins with "Hey, I've got something interesting to share with you!"?
In the MLM person's case, it would be about Fabulous New Cleaning products. In mine, it was all about How Cows are Destroying the Environment.
I have mellowed a bit since then. Ok, a lot since then. I have even stopped being a Very Good Vegetarian. What I have become is a "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" vegetarian.
Pretty much every book on diet and food choices and vegetarianism will spend a few paragraphs describing the levels of vegetarianism. What is acceptable to one faction won't fly with another.
A few years ago, I decided to stop caring about labels and factions and do whatever the hell I wanted.
I was at a potluck when a vegan woman flipped OUT because someone had put clams in the dip. She threw a spectacular fit. She reached into her mouth and scooped the dip out and flung it in the trash and began sobbing about EATING DEATH while she ran for her toothbrush.
Ah, to be such a sensitive soul that one cares about every little dead clam of the world. Yes, clams die, every day, and perhaps someone should shed a tear over that fact. But it won't be me.
Oh, please. Meat is not POISON (oh, I know there are a couple acres of the internet that are just waiting to pounce on that one. Impacted Fecal Colon Matter! High Cholesterol! Clogged arteries!). It is food, food that has fed billions of people for tens of thousands of years.
But I choose to avoid it as much as I am willing to, for environmental reasons and also because I just don't like it much.
For me, this means that I don't buy meat, cook meat or order meat dishes in restaurants. But I also choose not to quiz beleaguered waiters about what is in the soup stock - chicken or veg? I don't ask in Mexican restaurants, where I am fully aware the beans may be swimming in tasty pork fat.
If I want to eat a fish taco once every couple months or eat half a piece of bacon to amaze my friend Steve, who loves to nag me about being a veg by waving crispy fried pork products in my face, I will damned well do so and I will still call myself a vegetarian and if that make you a little nuts about how wrong that is, haha. Joke is on you.
I also fully support people who want to raise their own meat or who take steps to assure that the meat they eat is raised humanely and organically. I think every step in that direction is a good step. I'm done guilting people and harassing them. All it ever did was make people miserable.
If this makes me Not a Real Veg, sue me. I'm over it. Bandwagon, done.