Hayley from the Whistler Vegetarian Society wrote an awesome blog post over at Whistler is Awesome, encouraging Whistler-ites (Whistler-ians?) to take on Meatless Mondays. Whistler seems like a perfect place to embrace this idea...it's full of active, outdoors-y, health-conscious people who seem progressive enough to want to go in the direction of healthy, sustainable eating, and Meatless Mondays are a great place to start.
For the last 15 years or so, my Meatless Mondays have been Flesh-Free-Fridays. I started attempting to abstain from eating meat on Fridays in high school. It's a Catholic thing. When I met Rob the Husband shortly after graduating, he joined me in this Friday fasting. We were never hard core about it...if we were at a friend's place for dinner and they were serving meat, we'd eat it. But if we were eating out at a restaurant with decent meatless options or eating at home, we'd really make the effort to stay away from the meat.
I remember some days it being such a pain in the ass to try to stay away from meat. Coming up with meatless options was painful, especially since Rob didn't like seafood. I really had a hard time thinking outside of what I knew (because meat is the focal point of every dish, of course), and we would end up eating rotini covered in cream of mushroom soup most Fridays, which got really, really boring.
I'd even be reluctant to eat Caesar salad because I didn't want to eat it if I couldn't sprinkle it with a crapload of bacon bits. I'd end up feeling deprived.
I look back on that time and think about how inconvenienced I felt when I couldn't eat meat. I totally get where people are coming from when they are reluctant to participate in Meatless Mondays.
I didn't do it for health-based or ethical or environmental reasons. Mine was a more religious, spiritual motivation...an act of self-sacrifice. But then again, I was completely oblivious to the environmental factors involved. And these factors are HUGE. The information available now is much more accessible and much more compelling, and if people just opened themselves up to that info, the global implications of meat consumption would motivate people to start shifting towards the Plant-Strong route.
It is possible to shift your way of thinking. I think back on my attitude towards food 6 months ago and I am amazed at how little I knew or cared.
The information is there. We have a responsibility to ourselves and our kids and our planet to give a shit.
More power to Whistler if they take Hayley's blog post to heart. Whistler is awesome and Whistler Vegetarian Society is awesome...and they used two of my food pics for the blog post so of course I think that's pretty friggen awesome :)
Awesomeness all around.