Sad Cows: A 3 Glass of Wine Defense of Vegetarianism

So I gave up meat in November of 2013. This is not my first experiment in vegetarianism; no, I have done it here and there, sometimes for weeks, sometimes for months and sometimes for years at a time since I was about 14. Right now I am vegetarian as I keep telling myself because I do not want to be responsible for sad cows. Sad cows. Sad pigs. Sad chickens. I cannot, really, make them sad and when I look at it like that, I tend to freak the fuck out and refuse to eat meat. And yet I want a bacon cheeseburger sometimes, you would not believe how much I want a bacon cheeseburger. I could eat the FUCK out of a bacon cheeseburger. But I won’t, because: sad cow.

Tonight I had a little chicken. My friend Jay wanted to try chicken and waffles and I also wanted to try chicken and waffles because despite spending almost every fucking moment of the last 35 years south of the Mason-Dixon line, I have never had chicken and waffles. That would be because they are fake Southern cuisine thought up by somebody with a waffle iron and a bag of frozen chicken breasts or possibly because they are from Alabama or Mississippi, although I lean to the first explanation. Nevertheless, I said, well, I will eat the waffles (I am so self sacrificing, it is amazing, the church is looking for my martyrdom crown) and you eat the chicken. So we did it and it was good, although not what we were expecting – if I was making chicken and waffles it would be fried chicken and major league white gravy over waffles, right? Not spicy chicken tenders over waffles with syrup with peppers in? But we do not know and it was really good, what it was, it was good.

SO I left and bethought myself of the sad chickens, so sad, haunting me, saying “SAD!” And then I said, no, hold on, the chicken I just ate died yoinks ago, it had no connection with me, its ghost cannot possibly show up and be all HAMLET on my ass. Except that, yes, you know, it can, really. And I am sorry. I am sorry for a lot of things, the gods maybe know, and eating meat is one of them. It is one of the ones I can kind of fix, so I am.

No promises, sad cows! I may have a bacon cheeseburger again sometime soon, but I do promise this: I will know where the hell it came from. If I do go back to eating meat, I want to be very clear on what I’m doing. Because honestly, I don’t harbor any kind of misapprehension that would say I have more of a right to live than Elsie the cow out in the field. I don’t, you know, and Elsie feeds more people, probably (except for lactose intolerant people like me, and also there have been times where I have fed surprising amounts of kids on surprisingly little food) so her right to live really trumps mine. I think about that and I think, you know, that it’s valid.

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