Wednesday, June 06, 2007

This one's for you, Uncle Monty.
Isn't this a healthy, toothsome frock? Just look at that lettuce, those stout carrots and peas in a pod. Yummy.
I'd love to wear this one to brunch with my Uncle Monty, who is not only an enthusiastic vegetarian, he positively venerates all things vegetable. Perhaps the sole practicioner of vegetarian ikebana, Uncle Monty frequently pops over to Kyoto to create his edible sculptures.
I own two vegetarian dresses. Both circa late 1970's. Both cotton. One shows brightly colored veggies on a navy background. It sports yellow piping and a full skirt. The second is a recent acquisition, and not yet on display. White raw cotton with a thick burlap sack style weave is printed with asparagus, eggplants and corn--absolutely my favorite noshes.
People generally presume I am a vegetarian. I suppose I dress like one. A few years ago I cut out meat. At least, that's the official story. But despite my love of the Vegetable Kingdom, I have not been able to give up sushi. Wilbur, Bambi and Elsie the moo cow are all safe with me. But if you are a nice juicy salmon, tuna, or a cute little shrimp scuttling along, we can't be friends. No, don't even tell me your name, little shrimpie, because I will probably eat you anyway. Oy, there goes my good karma.
Don't worry, lobsters, you are not in danger. I won't eat you ever. But in all honesty, it's just because you kinda freak me out.
So should I abandon this sham? This bogus vegetarianism. Do I get enough protein? Probably not. Do I eat way too many carbs? You betcha. Do I frequently face menus without a viable option for meatlessness? Sigh. And then there is cheese, which I end up eating despite being somewhat lactose intolerant. And then there are the tofu scares and the murmurings that it mimics estrogen and all the rumors of health risks. And I've put on 10 pounds.
There are smart vegetarians out there. People who can tell you about the chemical and mineral content of food. Who know how to combine things. Who have explored the benefits of spirulina. I, however, am opening a bag of potato chips.
I don't want to support the industrial horrors of the meat industry. Or the dairy industry for that matter. And I feel lighter not eating that stuff. But maybe that's just the spacey feeling of malnutrition. If you are a smart vegetarian, please save me from myself. Tell me what to eat. Uncle Monty could do well to cut down on the dairy too. Help us!
I wish I could tell you to go get this dress. But I can't have it and neither can you. It's already gone, so say good night, Gracie. It sold for a whopping $140. 49. Dear Winning Bidder, I imagine you as a smart vegetarian, eating locally grown organic produce, and making it work.


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