EDIT// I just found out that October 1st is World Vegetarian Day. How apt. How serendipitous.
Okay, so I know it is the general consensus of the riffraff/plebeians/peasants/“common, vulgar, weak, licentious crowd” that vegetarians are annoying in a holier-than-thou sort of way. As a vegan (surprise!) I may be more guilty of annoying the general populace than most. Except I stopped being preachy sometime in middle school (so if I’m annoying people it’s actually because they have a problem with my personal choices and identity- so if that’s you basically go fuck yourself).
That said, I do get a little irritated by the endless parade of ‘ways in which vegetarians are annoying’ and ‘worst things about vegetarians lists’. Thankfully, there are lots of annoying things omnivores do that I can take issue with in retaliation.
But first, a disclaimer: I don’t at meat. It’s a personal choice. My personal choice is not a judgment on your personal choice.
It seems that a lot of the anti-vegetarian hostility comes from a sense that another’s vegetarianism is a passive aggressive way of passing judgment on others’ choices. It’s a bit hypocritical of me to suggest that non-vegetarians cut the whole ‘the best defense is a good offense’ shit when I’m about to discuss ways in which they’re irritating, but I do think a more accepting outlook on both sides would solve a lot of problems (Hey, what problems wouldn’t a more accepting outlook solve?)
That’s enough of the peaceful talk. Time for shots to be fired.
- When people ask me if I’m offended by them eating meat in my presence.
“?”… “No?” Yeah, no, that’s not a thing.
- “What do you mean there isn’t anything you can eat? They have salad!”
I’m vegan but I still have the nutritional requirements of a human being. I didn’t suddenly turn into a gerbil. I still can’t live on iceberg lettuce.
- “That moment when you try the ravioli and it tricked you and it’s the vegan ravioli. That’s why I hate vegans.”
Ok, this doesn’t even make sense. You have options besides the vegan ravioli. I don’t and I also think the vegan ravioli is disgusting. I promise I would be just as happy if the vegan ravioli disappeared as you. If anything, the vegan ravioli is a reason to hate omnivores collectively (it’s never a good idea to hate anyone collectively)- because they think because I’m vegan I’m happy to eat dust pockets. Do not hold me accountable for the atrocity that is vegan ravioli.
- “I was vegetarian for three days/oh, I could never be vegetarian, meat is too good!”
I don’t care about your failure. Just kidding, it’s just that you hear variations on these so often. I’m happy if people actually want to have a conversation about their experiences, but so often people seem to just be trying to excuse themselves to me- while I honestly don’t care what you eat.
- “Can you pick off the meat?”
Further explanation: I don’t eat meat and I also try to not support meat production. Chucking meat in the trash is pretty much just as bad. Also I don’t want to touch it.
- “What do you eat?!”
The blood of my enemies.
The souls of the innocent.
The tears of children.
The fondest dreams of virgins.
The nightmares of angora bunnies.
I also really like burritos.
- “You know you’re basically murdering plants when you eat? How does that make you feel?”
Mmm. Okay. I don’t have a problem with death. I’m not Voldemort. I understand that things must die to give me life. But murder is a legal term that does not apply to plants (or to animals, though some of us might feel it should and it certainly does feel like it should when the guy in the horror movie kills the family dog). But I’m not yet convinced that plants feel pain. Also, plants aren’t treated as poorly as we treat animals prior to consuming them. The effect on the environment of eating plants and plant-derived food is also much less than that of eating meat. So I’ll think about it when I learn that plants feel pain, when they start being put in veal crates, battery cages, etc., and when they threaten the environment as much as raising livestock and livestock feed.
Also, this question is aggressive. Middle finger to you.
- “I’m also vegetarian, but I eat fish.”
I think that means you’re not vegetarian.
- “What are you eating? It looks disgusting!”
Your face looks disgusting. And so does your mom.
A bit of background: I’ve struggled with an eating disorder for a while, so this is a hard one to deal with. My thought process: “Haha, yeah you’re right! All food is disgusting and why am I even eating anyway?”
And this is so rude. If my food doesn’t please you aesthetically, I don’t know who made you a food critic but either way I’m not interested in your opinion.
And I have so many things to say about how disgusting I find bloodied carcasses. Don’t get me started.
- “But humans are meant to eat meat.”
Yes, and pop tarts.
Really though, I’m fine without meat. It can be done.
And we’re kind of not meant to drink milk from cows. That’s just weird.
“We were born to eat meat!”
Haha, no, I was born to be wild. Byeeee.
- “So you can’t eat meat?”
I physically can. I choose not to.
- “What if I gave you a million dollars to eat a steak? What if you were stranded on a deserted island with only chicken nuggets?”
What if you had to choose- watch your parents have sex everyday or join in once and never have to watch again? Sorry, that was twisted and cruel. But hypothetical you started it.
Also, if you’re curious- probably yes to the first (I’m vegan, not an idiot) and perhaps yes to the second.
- “Oh, so you’re vegan- that must be why you’re so skinny!”
Haha, funny, no. This is actually a result of my longstanding struggle with anxiety and anorexia. Cheers!
Also a shit ton of unhealthy things are vegan.
- “I could never give up —–”
As a vegan you generally learn to explore similar-tasting (better-tasting because they also have the pleasant savor of moral superiority) substitutes. Also, I’m sorry that you struggle with addiction.
- When you ask the dining hall worker where the hummus is and they point to the tuna fish.
- “Can you eat bread?”
Does no one know what their food is made of anymore? Seriously, someone asked me recently if potatoes were vegan. No, people hunt them with pitchforks as they roll through the underbrush, all of their eyes rolling in terror.
- “You know being vegetarian is unhealthy?”
Nice response: I challenge you to a dance off.
Mean response: Who told you that, your obese grandma?
- Canonical vegan options
If I’m offered one more soggy wrap I will shove it up someone’s nose.
But thank god for the home fries and oatmeal at continental breakfast, am I right?
- “I think people just become vegetarian/vegan so they be morally superior.”
No, I’m vegan because I AM morally superior.