Monday, March 16, 2009

I'm a Lonely, Sober Vegetarian

That's how Honda defined my vegetarianism, and it amused me so much that I've decided to go with it. Basically this is how it works: when I'm alone, I don't eat meat. But I will eat meat on some social occasions. This allows me to go to a dinner, and eat the meatloaf the host lovingly prepared for all of us. Since I'm not eating meat for sustainability reasons, I think this works well, because I think eating meat once a week or once every two weeks is sustainable, but eating meat twice a day is not. Allowing myself meat on social occasions allows me to treat myself to sushi and/or dimsum and/or Korean barbecue, and also allows me to not be a social pariah who my friends hate for my food pickiness.

As for the sober part, that's because sometimes when I get drunk, I forget that I'm a vegetarian. ;)


Anonymous said...

I'll have to say that I fall in this category also. I don't prepare meat for myself or order it. But I don't want to ever call myself a vegetarian, as my husband eats meat, and he is generally a good cook, so I will take bites out of his steak or I will occasionally eat a salten~a guilt free. But it doesn't mean I have to prepare meat for myself or the kids. (Many rules fly out the window with a Margarita...)

Green Bean said...

That's funny! I think that is a great way to tackle it. For instance, I'm a lonely locavore. Kind of. When I go to other people's houses, I eat what I'm served. Mostly. ;-) I think that's how most of us approach life. We have to have values but we need to get together with friends and family too.

Cath@VWXYNot? said...

Great compromise!

I once saw a friend who'd been vegetarian for 15 years, and who didn't usually drink much, get really hammered and eat a turkey and bacon sandwich. It was very amusing for the rest of us... she blamed the hangover the next day on the meat, naturally.

Sooz said...

If you eat meat, you are not a vegetarian, but a flexitarian.

Anonymous said...

If I was made "a social pariah who my friends hate for my food pickiness" I would look for new friends. Would you treat your friends the way they treat you?

I haven't eaten meat for 30 years but have meat eating (and meat raising/butchering), vegetarian and vegan friends. We sit down together and each eat what we can and like. It's called respect.


Sooz said...

RJ - I'm a vegetarian, but I eat eggs and cheese, and drink milk. Therefore I am not a vegan. I would never call myself one out of respect for those who are.

ruchi said...

Anon, seriously. Margaritas over here!!

GB, here here! Here's to values while maintaining flexibility.

Cath, hah! That's funny.

RJ, it was kind of a joke. :) I was a full-fledged vegetarian for four years of college, and I never ate meat, not even socially. And all my friends dealt with it fine. But that said, when a friend invites me to a dinner party, and has made meat as the main course, it's nice to partake. Also, when you go to a restaurant and order family style, it's nice to be able to go with the flow and let people order what they want without worrying too much about it. Like I said, for me, since I'm going mostly veggie for sustainability reasons, eating meat once a week or once every couple weeks is okay for me. If I was doing it for different reasons, that would be another story and of course my friends would respect my decision.

Sooz, yes, I know that some people term it flexitarianism, but Honda coined the term "lonely vegetarianism" and I just think it's funnier. ;)

Anonymous said...

I find that i fall under this area myself. All of my family are meat eaters, but I've found some support from meeting people on blogs like this and on RawPeople.

Lisa Nelsen-Woods said...

If your a lonely vegetarian then I think that makes me a social vegertarian! I try to eat one vegertarian meal a day to offset some health issues but I like the taste of meat to give it up full time. We have several couple friends that are one veg and carnivore. If we're out with them to get say a pizza I tend to order in the vegarian camp to make portioning easier = 2 meat eaters + 2 non meat eaters.

Megan said...

I've actually stopped calling myself a vegetarian, as I eat meat once every couple of months. I don't want to disrespect those who never eat meat, but I have a hard time explaining to people why I want to make sure there are veggie options at a restaurant.

I think eating meat once in a while is sustainable, but only if it's local, organic and free range (I was reading up on "free range" labelling in the UK--not as good as I would like). Of course, I think that getting your soya from halfway around the world probably isn't very sustainable.

Anyone know who I can talk to about local vegan diets?