Strangely enough, over the past few weeks, I have been presented with an astounding number of opportunities to share my beliefs of a different sort.
Now you must understand that you don't find too many vegans in the middle of Kansas. So yesterday, when Oprah aired her show on the Vegan Challenge, I got a lot of phone calls, texts, and facebook messages.
Mr. B asked me twice if I had gone over our texting limit for the month.
I had a few conversations that were sparked by her show. One revolved around Oprah's use the word "vegan-ish." She used it in a context meaning that she could eat like a vegan some of the time, but not all the time.
My Rogue Dietitian friend mentioned that being vegan-ish, isn't vegan. This is very true. I am sure she learned this in her studies of professional dietetic literature, but I will pretend that she picked it up while I droned on endlessly about my new lifestyle. What can I say? I am an interesting and intelligent friend to have...did I mention I was sarcastic, too?
After a follow-up question about what a vegetarian is, I thought it would be a good time to talk about the vegan-ish labels, like what a vegan is - according to me of course. I will start with what I know, which happens to be very little, but you'll read on just for the minuscule chance I might say something witty.
SPOILER ALERT: It's not looking good for you.
Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian: No living animal was sliced, gutted, or shot with a bolt for anything this vegetarian eats. Still consumes eggs and dairy products...and gets sinus infections. There are variations on this: Lacto-Vegetarians and Ovo-Vegetarians. If you paid any attention at all in an elementary science class, I shouldn't need to explain the difference, but I will: lacto consumes dairy, ovo consumes eggs.
Pescatarian: Adds fish to a vegetarian diet. Mercury, yum. This is more of a semi-vegetarian/flexitarian diet - see below.
Flexitarian: The actual word Oprah might want to use instead of 'vegan-ish.' Mr. B and Little B are great examples of this. They gladly eat the vegan fare I place in front of them - BUT I, nor my vegan menus, prevent Mr. B from occasionally ordering a bacon cheeseburger nor Little B. from kissing a package of hot dogs Mr. B put in the shopping cart.
Happy flexitarians I've yet to completely brainwash.
Raw Foodist: This is becoming more popular as of late. A Raw Foodist is typically vegan, but not always. They believe that eating a diet of 80% raw food (or any food not cooked above 115*) creates an environment for optimum health. My curiosity is growing about this, but I don't have room on my counter for a dehydrator or another fruit bowl, and I can't afford a Vitamix. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
Vegan: The term 'vegan' is actually taken from the word vegetarian: first two letters + last two. Genius, I know. This type does not use, purchase or consume any animal products of any kind. Will typically not support any company that tests on animals either.
Now, by my own definition, I am not a true vegan...yet. I still call myself a vegan - my diet is such and my lifestyle is progressively so. I am sure the body wash in my shower was probably tested on baby bunnies and I'm not ready to throw out my leather boots or cashmere sweaters. As I read and learn more about the treatment of animals, I find myself seeking more compassionate alternatives to everyday choices from clothes to cleaning goods. I didn't start out on this journey because of my reverence for animal life, but that aspect is becoming more apparent to me each day. There is a lot of stuff going on that you don't know about, that you don't want to know about, which concerns the welfare of all living things. This is a learning journey for me and I hope to share some of that with you - without depressing or disgusting you with great frequency.
Semi-preachy part over...now to the
The other night when I was picking up a pizza at Papa Murphy's, the friendly dude at the register was very concerned about why I wanted our pizzas without cheese. I explained a bit about Little B's allergies and then explained how much better we all feel without the animal products. Then the sky opened up, I led him through the omnivore's prayer.
Accept that you are a dirty, rotten omnivore;
Believe that veganism is the way;
Confess your dietary sins...
I joked with Mr. B in the van that I had become an e-vegan-vangelist. We toyed around with all different plays on the words evangelist and vegan, but couldn't come up with anything stellar. However...
I've been toying around with getting more serious about my blog, which would potentially include a name change. The little 'vegan evangelist' joke Mr. B and I shared was sort of a spring board for it. So here's the deal...
You email me or comment on this post a suggestion for the name of my new blog. I pick your name, I take your favorite dessert and veganize it. Even if you live far away - we'll work something out.
Here's to your cleverness surpassing that of Mr. B and me.
Let's be honest folks, not a terribly difficult feat. Good luck!