Well, it had to happen. After a two year flirt with that hussy, vegetarianism, my wife and I have finally committed to a ménage à trois with her disciplinarian sister, veganism. And if you think that’s un-Australian, go fuc* yourself, mate.

Because, we’re not the only ones waking up to the brave new world of a whole-food plant-based diet: we are legion, and for a myriad reasons not just animal-rights or wanky carbon-footprint reduction bullshittery, not even the vague desire to lead a more ethical life. But don’t all you inveterate carnivores fret, this isn’t turning into a harangue. Please eat as much meat as you like: my son’s studying to be a doctor, you’ll make him rich.

Isn’t it intriguing, though, how smart people consciously set out to do stupid things? Is it because they don’t like to be told? The arrogance of intellect, maybe, of never being ‘told’ by another? This is both infantile and hilarious, in a society built on the premise that we learn not only from other’s mistakes but from the accumulated wisdom of other’s successes? Law, medicine, politics, economics — can’t think of a single field of human endeavour that’s impervious to imparted knowledge, except religion perhaps: “Oh, Lord! So sodomising little boys is wrong now, is it? But you said…

Apologies for the cheap shot, but why are conservatives more likely to be meat-eaters (and kiddy fiddlers) than liberals? Is vegetarianism, let alone veganism, really such a threat to ‘traditional values’? I guess so. Because if the mounting suspicion is correct, then ‘traditional values’ mean unquestioning support of the status quo — and that has nothing to do with the wellbeing of us all, just the wealth of a few. But the humble legume is not to blame, and I’m sure there are plenty of conniving asshats out there who eat kale. Vegan child-molesters, on the other hand, appear to be curiously thin on the ground…

Decide for yourself. I agree that epiphanies, like violent bouts of diarrhoea, should be experienced alone. And on that note, I’m off to make myself some lunch! ‘Hot and sour seared tofu with sugar snap peas’ courtesy of the NYT Cooking section — and to avoid coming across as some kind of vegan evangelist, I’m not sharing them with anyone! I’m going to eat them all by myself!

 

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