Do Meaters Ever Win?

2010 marks one Midwesterner’s hesitant foray into vegetarian territory

Robin Kinderman, illustrated by Holly Zimmerman

For my New Year’s resolution, I decided to become a vegetarian. You’re probably asking, “Why?” – at least that’s what all of my friends and family members asked, with rather stunned expressions on their faces.

It all started while I was Christmas shopping at Borders. I was headed for the checkout when a book grabbed my attention. Anyone who loves shopping in Borders knows how easily it is to get distracted. All those tables with fancy displays that say stuff like “The New You” and “Exercise Your Brain.” All the delicious titles and colors are so overwhelming. Next thing I know, my phone rings and my significant other is asking where the hell I’ve been for the last three hours. It was during one of these episodes that I was stopped short by a little white book with tall slender letters spelling out “Skinny Bitch.”

Typically, I would surpass a book like this. I’m not skinny, and I’m not a bitch. But I picked it up and read the back. “Stop being a moron and start getting skinny!” Hmm. Interesting. The book was a no-crap, sassy attitude approach to eating healthy. I liked it. I was sucked in. But I already had an armful of presents, so I justified it by telling myself I would read it before Christmas and then give it to my best friend. Good.

So I read the book, and after sucking me in with girly humor, it dove into why being vegetarian is better, and then deeper into why going vegan is the only way. I was convinced. I was going to give up meat, milk, soda, coffee, and limit my intake of all other dairy and animal products. 

It was actually a lot of fun starting out. I liked the challenge.  I spent the first few days eating oranges and oatmeal for breakfast, couscous and salad for lunch, and potatoes and rice dishes for dinner. I snacked on almonds and chips and salsa. Eliminating meat was not the hard part. The hard part was all the flack I got from my fiancé. My fiancé is a very rational thinker, and he questioned my motives for my lifestyle change. For every action, there must be a justifiable reason. Me? I just do what I want and it rarely makes sense and I don’t worry if there’s a good reason or not. But this became a problem, since the person I love and live with didn’t want to be vegetarian.