“Cucumber should be well sliced, and dressed with pepper and vinegar, and then thrown out, as good for nothing.” So said that wag Dr Johnson who knew a thing or two about living. Vegetarians, on the other hand, think cucumbers are fun food, snack food. Sometimes they even cook ‘em, which is sort of the culinary equivalent of having only ugly stuff to wear on laundry day. Of course, my friend used to say cucumbers were only good for one thing. She never told me what.
Don’t get me wrong. Many friends are vegetarians. I respect them for it – and for the fact that they don’t believe the world is flat anymore. Many, many years ago I TOO was a vegetarian. You can imagine how I that made me popular with the locals who were mostly pig farmers, cattle barons and chicken ranchers. (To think I could have married the heir to that hot dog fortune; I could have been Mrs Johnny Porklips.) Yes, I was raised in meat country. I woke up to furry, smelly things that went moo, cluck and oink. Take one look at my thighs and tell me I’m wrong.
According to a recent survey, most British vegetarians still crave bacon butties. A huge percentage of vegetarians hide behind bike sheds to eat bacon butties in secret while their trusting veggie partner is home slaving over the Quorn. I once crept around the back of the local bike shed and was shocked to see, amongst the kids having underaged sex and smoking, pale adults munching obscenely on M&S bacon rolls – they were the same people who can rent BABE with a straight face. (Anyone who rents BABE is one of the fallen. Walk behind them and grunt to show that you know. They hate that.)
Vegetarians know real pain. The pain you get when you are a member of Meateaters Anonymous and admit to ingesting one sausage. That’s why many pretend that a little meat is okay. Once, I stumbled upon my girlfriend, the model (Boo! Hiss!), feeding her ‘vegetarian’ son a pepper stuffed with mince. ‘Well,’ she cooed, spooning the brown mixture into the year-old’s drooly mouth, ‘Freddie is a veggie MOST of the time.’ Yeah. I bet little Freddie stunned his own stirk too.
Eating beans, pulses and legumes saves creatures that we think are cute from certain death, does something positive for the rest of the world, saves money and does good things for your body. That’s how they sell it to impressionable food-eaters the world over.
The real face of vegetarianism is quite different. Veggies make dinner parties more difficult than necessary (“Oh, Sheila can’t eat eggs, Margaret won’t eat red meat and Bill, well, Bill only licks tripe…oh, shit, let’s go to Burger Czar.”) They also – excuse my candour – smell. Most vegetarians cannot properly digest anything, must less organic, dried pulses for chrissakes. Sitting next to them is like asking the maitre d’ to seat you inside a methane factory. When they cut loose, they blame the damned dog. (Beginning vegans, take my advice: don’t be at home to Mr Undercooked Bean.)
People who say, with a smile, that they don’t eat things with “faces” or “eyelashes” or “personalities” are asking to get punched. Worse are those who abhor killing and still eat meat. It’s as if they don’t really want to think about where their meat comes from. Ask them and you’ll get nonsensical answers such as: “Mum makes it”, “The shop”, “The Butcher”, “Waitrose”, “The meat fairy”. Is it so hard to think that that burger was once gambolling on the hoof, happily trying to have sex with other bits of beef. It was born as food and so it died.
For those die-hard, throw-yourself-under-a-milk-float vegetarians who can’t understand why I think killing edible things isn’t wrong, listen here: you kill bacteria and vegetables. Just because they don’t look like humans or cry out when you kill them doesn’t mean you are not taking a life. You are merely taking a life unlike your own. You are still killing. Every day, a family of carrots or cucumbers wonder what happened to their father, sister, daughter or mother vegetable. Little do they realise their loved one – an innocent vegetable who never harmed anyone – was eaten by YOU. Hang your head in shame, carrot killer!
Alas, to live means something else must die. Even that weird Eastern sect (that’d be the Jaines, thank you interwebz) who wear masks over their mouths so not to kill germs kill SOMETHING. It can’t be helped.
There are only two good reasons to be a vegetarian: don’t eat meat if you don’t like it.
The other? Be a vegetarian because you really hate vegetables and kill them just to watch them die.
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