Vegetarian in my Heart

I eat meat.

But I hate myself for doing it.

I think about stopping all the time.

I want to stop.

But then, I would have to learn a whole new way of cooking.

At my age, that wouldn’t be easy.

Even if I did that,

I would still have to cook meat for my carnivorous husband.

It just seems too overwhelming.

I don’t eat pork or veal any more.

In fact, my rule is:

I never eat any thing that looks like what it used to be.

No whole lobsters, or little game birds or fish with heads .

Sometimes when I eat chicken or beef, my stomach gets queasy,

or I don’t like the taste or the smell.

I assume this is my brain trying to help me get “off meat”.

But then it passes and the meat finds it’s way into my mouth.

In my heart, I am a vegetarian.

But the flesh is weak and every once in a while,

I need to experience the decadence of a juicy hamburger or steak.

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But then, I pass a truck on the highway, delivering animals on their way to slaughter &

I feel physically sick.

If I had to choose an animal and watch someone kill it so I could eat it,

I would never eat meat again.

Perhaps that’s what I should do.

But, of course, I could never watch that.

Once, in Thailand,

I was at a restaurant with a huge aquarium and

the waiter wanted me to point out which fish I wanted to eat

so the chef could kill it and prepare for me.

That night I ate rice.

I didn’t eat veal for 12 years as a protest of the way they raise veal calves.

I was very proud of my

sacrifice, because veal was always one of my favorites.

Then, one night, in some great restaurant there it was on the menu:

Veal Saltimbocca.

The description of the dish was poetry.

My sacrifice had lasted long enough, hadn’t it?

Nothing had changed.

Veal calves were still being inhumanely treated.

My protest for 12 years had gone unnoticed by everyone but me.

I deserved this one little reward- didn’t I?

So, I ordered it.

I was so disgusted by my weakness, I didn’t enjoy it and couldn’t finish it.

Twelve years…. right down the drain!

So, as a failed vegetarian and ambivolent carnivore,

my newest approach is to purchase from ethical local producers,

acknowledge, with gratitude,

 the poor cow or chicken who has given it’s life

so  I may increase my self loathing & my cholesterol.

Then, I eat the meat.

I hate myself for it, but it’s the best I can do right now.

lf it’s any consolation,

my guilt prevents me from totally enjoying the meal.

So, that’s something!

Here’s a little carnivore joke:

What’s the difference between a chicken and a pig in a bacon omelette?

The chicken was involved

But the pig was committed!

My fervent hope is that someday I will stop being the chicken

and start being the pig….

100% committed

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