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Today is World Vegetarian Day?


(Before you read, a caveat: I’m an omnivore.)

I think most of us consider adopting the vegetarian diet, and then most of us who consider it reject it. But there is something about the vegetarian diet that I can respect: the line in the sand.

The rest of us explain our logic something like this, Vegetarianism is too extreme, too reactionary, too out of balance, too lacking in certain key minerals. Better to adopt a balanced, moderate diet, one that is not out of balance, one that is not lacking in any key minerals. Sure, a vegetarian diet will get more spinach and sweet potato, but I’ll get a proper amino acid mix. And unlike them, I won’t go overboard on the soy.

Maybe the internal dialogue even inspires some spring cleaning in your diet.

But then life happens. You have to work through lunch. The kitchen is a mess, so you elect to take the kids out to eat for dinner. You oversleep, so you get your breakfast — as well as your coffee — at 7-Eleven. One soft drink a week becomes two. Becomes three. Becomes one soft drink a day. Becomes two soft drinks a day.

Under the same forms of tiny daily duress, french fries once a week in time becomes french fries twice a day. Egg McMuffins and hash browns become a daily thing. Big Macs become a twice-daily thing. Your diet becomes even more extreme, even more reactionary, even more out of balance, even more lacking in certain key minerals than does the vegetarian diet. That is what I mean when I say vegetarians draw the line in the sand. No soft drinks, never, not ever. Not one a week. Not one a month. No french fries. No Egg McMuffins. No hash browns. No Big Macs. No, not now, not ever, never. I can respect that. The rest of us could use some of that.

There is no incrementalism in the vegetarian diet. You either are a vegetarian or you are not.

Patrick asks me how I’m going to relate this to music, and I don’t have a clue. How about this: Conor Oberst is apparently a vegetarian.

Ha! Did it. Doubting Thomas.

16 Responses to “Today is World Vegetarian Day?”

  1. theprettyproject says:

    Wow. A vegetarian day? I guess I should have skipped that rare burger for dinner. ;)

    • Fred says:

      I have to say I know someone who looks exactly like the computer-generated image in your profile picture. And it’s freaking me out a bit. She absolutely is that beautiful. And crazy, too. Not fun crazy, either.

  2. shutterboo says:

    They have Bacon Day – why not?
    PS-I love veggies but me and pork are way to tight to part. That’s got me thinking, I could really use a ham sandwich right about now.

  3. test says:

    HI, Nice info… thanks

  4. vanessa says:

    read this thoroughly: vegetarianism/veganism is not radical. in fact it makes the most sense. it is the acknowledgment of the need to be selfless, to have proper health, and some times have self-control. being a vegetarian is seeing. it is the purest and most truthful of lifestyles and allows one to have a cleansed mind, body, and spirit. people don’t want to open up to this ‘idea’ for it would mean ‘giving up things’, but the gain is so much more. once people stop fearing it and begin to open up and understand this ‘radical lifestyle’ the transition, they will find, will be exciting, easy, and enlightening. ignorance is killing us, other animals, and the world. knowledge is power.

    “be the change you want to see in the world.” -Gandhi

  5. Earl says:

    It’s not for everybody. I don’t think I could do without meat. There are ways to make a diet work I guess.

  6. Steven Harris says:

    I was vegetarian for seven years but lapsed. Can you guess why? Well let’s just say I’m looking forward to Bacon Day.

  7. Linaviolina says:

    Yea…last year I tried the veganish but more vegetarian than vegan thing. For a month- my friend that started it with me is still doing it! But not me- it’s like you easy to slip back to eating what is “normal” for Americans. After eating so well for a month, I literally couldn’t eat McDonald’s for months without being really sick afterwards. Just had McD’s last night, and it still didn’t go over so well, but I think that’s because I have adopted a healthier way of eating most of the time. It’s true- everything in balance. You feel so much better when you eat a delicious fresh raspberry instead of a piece of chocolate cake! (okay, like your insides feel happier and you feel skinnier…depending on your emotional mood, sometimes chocolate cake is the only cure). I enjoyed your post!

  8. enjoyboti says:

    hmmm is there burger vegetarian but the same as mcd ?

  9. fikalo says:

    Veggie for 14 years now… it’s working for me! :-)

  10. givenchance says:

    a vegetarian day? a day when all people do not eat meat? lol! i can not livwe without meat, sorry. it is very necessary for human’s body I think. do you know the expression: ” vegetarians do not eat animals, they eat their food.”. lol!

  11. Quanzi Z says:

    Actually, lots of vegetarians are “part-time” vegetarians. I know a lot of people who won’t buy meat or order meat at a restaurant, but if given meat by family/friends/etc will eat it. Or who try to limit the amount of meat in their diet but don’t cut it out completely for whatever reason. And there are certainly lots of vegetarians who cheat every now and then ;) So I think saying vegetarianism is a line in the sand is a bit of a misnomer.

    • Fred says:

      I’d actually like to hear some vegetarians that don’t cheat sound off on your comment. Your point is well taken, though.

  12. Funky Girl says:

    If god didn’t want us to eat animals he wouldn’t have made them out of meat!

    Seriously though, I’ve been a vegetarian for 19years. I get a lot of stick for it sometimes even though I never pass comment about what other people eat or force my values on anyone. I feed my children meat (quality meat that is and they love it) and ensure they give everything a try before they say they don’t like it. There is still a lot of education needed about vegetarianism (I didn’t know it was world veggie day!) but its come a long way over the last 20 years and a lot more acepted in mainstream society.

    Interesting article, thanks.

  13. Special K says:

    Having been a vegetarian for 7 and a half years now I thought that I heard it all, but this post is a new prospective and think it’s great, so I thank you for it Fred. When I first gave up meat I often heard from family and friends exactly what you said in the beginning of your post; that I was “restricting” myself too much or that my diet wasn’t balanced. But as time progressed and I truly lived my conviction I noticed the nay-sayers and questioners faded to the background as they were now hesitant to challenge my lifestyle because they fully realized their diets were the ones that were unbalanced and usually relying heavily on processed foods, sugars, and meat, all of which have proven through studies to contribute to progressive and degenerative disease such as obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, etc.
    I also love the comment you make about a line in the sand because it’s true. You either are or you are not. If you eat chicken, even rarely, you are not a vegetarian and I’m tired of people touting the semi-vegetarian flag. Being a vegetarian is a commitment, not one to be thrown aside when hunger rages or no vegetarian options are available. And as far as people questioning the physical abilities of vegetarians, I’d like to say that the balanced vegetarian diet can be ideal for building strength and endurance needed for sports and athletics (See Trifuel for the full article). I have trained and competed well in numerous sprint and Olympic triathlons and a half Ironman triathlons as well, as countless other long distance runs and rides. My mantra is “Powered by tofu-the other other white meat”.
    But having said this I do not presume to push my lifestyle onto others. Do what you believe is best for you.

  14. [...] under: good eats I’m sure a lot of you had the chance to read The Muse in Music’s the blog entry on the front page about World Vegetarian Day. If you did not, you should click the link & check it out as the rest [...]

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