I got an interesting email this morning from a reader unhappy that I am going veggie for just a week. I don’t know for certain as he didn’t divulge his eating habits, but I’m assuming he’s an angry vegetarian. He writes…
I don’t understand how someone can become vegetarian for one week. You either care about animal welfare or you don’t!!! Like a lot of people in this world, are you just doing it to play ‘the cool chick’ or are you simply another pretentious idiot who only cares for number one! Only do what you sincerely believe in or don’t bother!
Ah…the cool chick? If only! I’ve never managed to be cool. At school I had a terrible haircut, spots, wore my blazer buttoned up and belonged to the public speaking club, which was never cool. And now I spend my weekends knitting. Things haven’t changed much (although thankfully the spots have cleared up!). I may, however qualify for the pretentious idiot stakes.
He doesn’t mention that my vegetarian experiment is about saving money, so perhaps he didn’t realise this, but he makes an interesting point. Should you only go vegetarian out of a serious conviction about animal welfare? Are those of us who piggyback (excuse the awful expression!) on the veggie lifestyle to save on our shopping bill being cynical? I’ve had a few people email me this week to tell me they have cut down on meat primarily to save cash, although they are unhappy eating battery chicken etc.. One lady said that she feeds a family of four and they have practically given up meat, although she uses the odd bit of chorizo or pancetta to spice up her food, and saves money in the supermarket.
But isn’t it a personal choice? I hate bossy people telling me what to do, so I can understand why many of you are annoyed by Gordon Brown’s comments about saving leftovers, even though I agree with him. He’s right but we don’t want to hear it from the likes of him and his cronies!
I’ve enjoyed trying vegetarian meals this week and hope I have also saved money, which I will find out next week when I look back over the month’s food challenge. I have also become much more aware of the suffering of battery hens after keeping our own chickens for three years, which deters me from eating caged hen eggs and battery chicken. But if there is anything that would put me off becoming vegetarian fulltime or shopping more ethically it is judgemental people saying, “you must do this or otherwise you are a bad person”. What is wrong with trying these things out, one step at a time? You’ve got to start somewhere.
What do you think? Leave a message and let me know. Have a great weekend xxx Piper