Becoming a Vegan

I’ve toyed with the idea of giving up meat, but only for about a half second. It’s not that I love eating chicken, or turkey, or burgers too much. It’s just that I can’t imagine only eating vegetables, fruit, and bread and only drinking water and juice. Vegans don’t drink milk or eat cheese either. Or eggs. Actually the more I think about it, my diet is everything the vegans isn’t.

How am I supposed to have a ham and cheese sandwich without ham and cheese?

I have a friend, Nick Shell, who’s been posting extremely convincing and very sensible reasons why going vegan is (in my own words) not just a thing hipsters do. He and I caught up a bit on Sunday and he challenged me to go a weekend without dairy. Why didn’t he just stab me with a knife? I love cheese and all things cheesy! Like, what did the guy say when he walked into a… Oh, nevermind. I’ll stick to cheesy food.cheese1Nick’s reason for giving up dairy is simple: allergies. Since he’s been off dairy, his allergies have vastly improved. He could’ve said anything else but allergy conversations get my full attention. Because it’s crazy out here, y’all! Tennessee’s got to be one of the toughest environments for allergies. Pretty much everyone and their brother suffers a few times a year. And my brother’s in Orlando so I’m suffering for the both of us here! But Nick links dairy consumption with allergy symptoms which is radical to me. Just radical enough that the scales of my curiosity are tipping in favor of giving this no-dairy-weekend thing a shot.

I share some of Nick’s enthusiasm for being healthy, but I know for me it’s a slow process of changing my diet, and giving up food I enjoy (Coke floats!) to replace it with food I’ll learn to enjoy (cherry tomatoes, yuck!). That time is not right now. I will take his challenge though, and anyone who’s reading feel free to check back periodically for an update. I can tell you this, the first post after going vegan cold turkey for a weekend, (isn’t it ironic, don’t you think? Going vegan… cold turkey!) will include some sort of rant on how great milk is and how drinking it gives me strong bones and helps me say Aaron Burr whenever I need to.

-Out of the Wilderness

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