Apr. 02, 2008 - Issue #650: Privatization
Vegetarian Pet Peeves
Veggie Tales: 10 things you do that piss vegetarians off
“I think I might have an easier time telling them I was gay: at least that way they could say I was born that way. Sometimes going vegetarian feels like rejecting everything you’ve been taught growing up, especially in a household where every meal is centered on meat.”
Unlike being gay or being born stupid, vegetarianism is a choice. Today’s parents can accept a gay child and offer support to their not-too-bright offspring, but why the heck would someone choose not to eat meat? This got me thinking about the pitfalls of electing the vegetarian lifestyle.
I started asking friends to tell me their stories about being a vegetarian, and I found that there is a great deal of resentment from the herbivore camp. Everyone had a story to tell about some culinary disaster at the hands of well-meaning hosts.
So, after a significant amount of highly controlled if somewhat unempirical polling, I have compiled a top 10 list of the most annoying things that non-vegetarians do.
Ten: Never invite a vegetarian for dinner and cook in the same pan/grill/pot. When cooking for a vegetarian, they appreciate not having your greasy meat stains all over their non-flesh food. That means you can’t throw a veggie burger on the barbecue beside the fat-splattering cheeseburgers. And if you are going to grill food, it can’t be done atop the bits of flesh stuck to the grates, either.
Which brings me to number nine: Don’t serve tofu dogs. Seriously; tofu dogs are not gourmet food. Vegetarians did not give up meat and then regret that along with steak they now have to forgo hot dogs. Whoever thought of making a tofu dog that resembles a hot dog clearly was not an epicurean.
Eight: Vegetarians are tired of subsidizing the meat-eaters at the restaurant. Splitting the bill evenly doesn’t cut it for the vegetarians who didn’t order the costly meat entrées.
Seven: If you‘re on the plane and the guy next to you has a lovely pre-arranged special vegetarian meal, don’t be jealous. And whatever you do, if you’re accidentally served that meal, don’t eat it—it’s not for you and some other person on the plane will end up going without supper!
Six: If you host a party with both vegetarian and non-vegetarian fare, make sure the vegetarian guests are served first. There is nothing more frustrating than getting to the table late and finding that all of the cheese pizza is gone and there’s a ton of pepperoni left over. Set aside the veggie food if your meat-eating guests are likely to pounce on it.
Five: If you don’t know anything about cooking for vegetarians, at least don’t boil the food to death. Nobody likes to eat food that looks like a pile of pre-digested root vegetables.
Four: When dining with vegetarians, you don’t have to eat like you’re a jaguar going down on a gazelle on the Serengeti plains. That’s just gross, and frankly, nobody likes to see a carnivore eat like pig.
Three: Stop asking questions like, “You eat fish, though, right?” No, vegetarians don’t eat fish. Fish is flesh. So are shrimp, mussels, chicken, snake, guinea pig and rat. Some vegetarians will eat eggs and dairy products (cheese, sour cream), but they don’t eat sentient creatures.
Which brings me to two: Quit calling yourself a vegetarian if you eat fish. You’re not a vegetarian. You can’t cut back on Big Macs and call yourself vegan.
Finally, the number one thing vegetarians hate: people who say, “Just try a little ... you’ll like it.” Ah, no, we won’t like it, we don’t want to try it and quit trying to change us. V
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