6.22.2008

Well, isn't that just a kick in the ass

(Warning, I'm about to get all preachy and righteous and shit.)

I enjoy the occasional hamburger and a grilled chicken breast with some barbecue sauce on the side. A pound of lean ground turkey is sitting my freezer right now. I even had 2 turkey dogs for dinner tonight. There might be a frozen sausage buried deep in the bottom freezer drawer and I have 2 different kinds of cow's milk in the fridge. A container of a dozen eggs, minus the 2 I used recently, is on the top shelf of the fridge, right next to a half empty container of yogurt.

Needless to say, my kitchen is filled with animal products. It's never really bothered me for more than a few seconds.

About 8 years ago I read a book that talked about animals and how they live on 'farms'. Farms that produce milk and butter and meat. I can't remember the name of the book and I've been looking for it online for ever. I remember it was a red and white striped book and I think it had the word America in the title. That's all I remember. Hold the phone folks! I found it. Diet For A New America. I literally just found it on the Internet. Anyway, I read half the book years ago and got to the part about how chickens are raised so we can eat them and I just couldn't keep reading. It made my physically ill to read and picture those poor animals.

I'm fairly certain that I reduced my animal eating intake a little after reading that book. But it never stopped me entirely.

When a PETA commercial comes on or I see ads for taking care of animals that feed us, I'm embarrassed to say, I turn the channel or flip the page or ignore the problem. Because it's not my problem. Nope. It sure isn't.

And I've been going along like this for all my life practically. Let those other people deal with it. What a shitty attitude I've had.

Today I'm making a change. (Note that I'm writing this on Thursday the 19th and will probably post this in a few days as I already have a post scheduled to post soon.)

Did you guys ever see Morgan Spurlock's Super Size Me? Dude is crazy, but he's a genius. Well, I just started watching his cable show 30 Days. If you aren't familiar with the show I'll explain it. Morgan Spurlock or some random person lives, for 30 days, in a different environment or doing something different or learning new things. The first episode of this season, Morgan lived as a coal miner for 30 days. The second episode required a former NFL player to live in a wheelchair. The episode that I watched tonight had an avid hunter and meat eater living with a vegan family and helping protest with PETA.

Holy crap, I had no idea that I'd walk away from watching that episode with a desire to save all the baby calf's and give all the chickens a place to roam free, beaks intact.

I won't get all graphic but they showed some things that I just couldn't believe. I know this sounds stupid but I had no idea that momma cows are constantly pregnant to produce the milk we drink. I had no idea what was done with deceased baby calf's. You don't want to know.

I'm not quite prepared to go all vegan and stop wearing my adorable leather shoes, but I need to do something. Something that won't make me gag on my breakfast.

For the next 30 days I 'Pledge to Be Veg'. Fortunately I already have some tofu, soy 'meat' and lots of veggies on hand. I'm curious to see how I can do and if this feeling of horror fades after a day or two. Will I be all 'gung ho' and then fizzle out like I do with most ides that pop into my head? Or will I succeed and manage to live meat free and maybe even animal product free? Time will tell.

I'll update on occasion about my progress. In the meantime...tell me if you've ever gone vegan or vegetarian or know someone who has.

And, if you'd like to join me, click on the 'Pledge to Be Veg' link above.

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Update as of 6/22:

I've been doing the veg thing for 2 full days now and it's going really well. I went to lunch with Eric and Jackson (for a late Father's Day celebration) to a Mexican restaurant and it was daunting to find something to eat. But the chicken fajitas didn't appeal to me at all, really. Jackson and I shared cheese quesadilla's and I had some chips and hot sauce. Not quite WW friendly, but I was well within my points for the day even after than lunch. I went shopping for veg friendly foods and was surprised at the amount of speciality foods available. I bought some veggie dogs, 'turkey' and 'ham' lunch 'meat'. Today for lunch I had a 'turkey' sandwich and I honestly couldn't tell much of a difference in taste. Other than the horribly off putting color of the 'meat' I was quite pleased.

In the future I probably won't buy the special veggie meats because they are fairly expensive for the amount you get. So I'm looking for alternatives.

I've done some more research into what's in cow's milk, too. EWWW. I doubt I'll go vegan, but I have already significantly reduced my dairy intake and replaced it with soy, which I already like so that's a plus.

I find it extremely interesting that I've made an about-face in a few short days. I honestly wonder if I'll keep it up.

Tomorrow I'm leaving, with Jackson, to go out of town for a few days to visit a mommy friend and her family so that will be my first test. I'll make sure I update on my success or failure when I return.

6 comments:

Opal @ Vegan Momma said...

I'm vegan, I made the switch in 1992 I never ate too many animal products before. I was raised around farm animals as a child. I had a hard time eating my friends (chicken and ducks) so I refused.

A lot of your factory farmed animals seem to stay in a constant state of pregnancy I don't think it is as common in your traditional farm animals.

There is a lot of great Vegan websites available. The link I included is a link to my favorite vegan websites. It's located on my cooking website. My focus is simple, nutritious, and delicious.

Don't be surprised of your tastes changes over time some of the things I used to eat before I became veggie don't appeal to me anymore.

You can be healthy without being vegetarian or vegan you just have to make health choices.

Take your time changes can be difficult so don't beat yourself up if you slip up.

Congrats and I wish you the best in your journey. :-)

Kristabella said...

Wow! Good for you!

I can't do it, which is why I stay away from shows like that. I have no willpower and I like cheese too much. :)

Keep it up!

Anonymous said...

Hey there, I'm Melissa and I was featured in the 30 Days program and work for PETA. I just want to tell you how much it meant to me to read your post. So fantasitc that you finally made the connection...PLEASE keep it up. Just so wonderful. Let me know if I can help with your Pledge to go Veg...so exciting and THANK YOU!-

Danielle-lee said...

I watched that damn episode too! And it about killed me-the calves. It was awful. :( I don't know if I can go completely vegan but maybe I should try? I already don't eat a lot of meat to begin with. Not sure I want to do any research or read the book you mentioned, because I just might cry. Or puke!

Melissa said...

The worst ever is Meet Your Meat. I think I watched 30 seconds, puked and vowed to not ever assist anyone making money via these means. It's just insane!

Congrats I look forward to updates!

Shane said...

Stay away from soy http://www.mercola.com/article/soy/index.htm. Its primarily used as an industrial lubricant and significantly increases certain cancers. Also if you feed it to your boys, it is incredibly feminizing so dont let them eat school food.

Also as you say cows are constantly pregnant to produce milk. The cows udders also are never given a chance to heal so the milk produced has a large percentage of puss. European nations will not buy our milk because US milk has way over the acceptable amounts of puss. I will try to find you this article if you would like.

In the last two months or so I began eating only free range, organic meats. I still drink milk but I will probably begin drinking other alternative to cow milk.