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Monday, November 15, 2010

Happy 'Meatless Monday'

To be honest, this "Meatless Mondays" thing has not been going so well.

I think I've managed one other "Meatless Monday" since my first — failing mostly out of the habit of eating and ordering meat when I'm out. I'd forget to look for something vegetarian on the menu, remembering it is Monday and that I wanted to try not to eat meat as I'm already chowing down on my Chinese food or cheddar-chicken wrap. Oops. But here we are with a brand-new Monday with which to start fresh and give it another try.

My pescetarian friend Afton gave me some key advice when I told her about my struggles to go vegetarian for even one day of the week — how I don't think I'm getting enough protein, and how when I think of the reasons I would want to go vegetarian (greenhouse-gas emissions, farming conditions, etc.), it seems hypocritical not to cut out all animal products and go 100% vegan.

Her advice in vegetarianism, environmentalism and life in general is this: We can't be absolutists. It is pretty much impossible to succeed if we are absolutists about anything. We just do the best we can.

Good advice, Afton.

I didn't set out to be a vegetarian, and I feel like the most important thing when it comes to food is to buy local — small, local farms tend to have healthier and more sustainable farming practices for both produce and livestock — and I already do that, almost exclusively.

So I've decided to allow myself a little leniency on the vegan vs. vegetarian issue in order to get my protein and keep my sanity as I give this "Meatless Monday" thing a Take 2 — Eggs are OK for vegetarian dishes, as is dairy. At least for now.  

For breakfast: One egg sunny-side up (my fave) with a dash of sea-salt. Whole-wheat sourdough toast (the Heather's Artisan Bakery loaf was one of my delicious takes from the All-Local Farmers' Market on Saturday) with blueberry jam. Iced coffee with milk.

Now, if only I could get my parents to sign on to do this with me. I am staying with them in Columbia, and in the same conversation this morning during which I told them that I intended to have a "Meatless Monday," they decided they would have beef stew for dinner.


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