Sam Kee (Dessert place- at 1am where I had yummy almond dessert soup)
A book for me perhaps
I across a book called 'being vegan in a non vegan world' from vegan momma's blog
From chapter one:
All of us who are vegan have at some time or another just felt like absolute outsiders in the places that we’re supposed to be the most comfortable… our homes, our jobs, and with our friends and families. Though most vegans are likely not any “freakier” than your average person, the simple and compassionate act of denying animal products for ethical reasons can literally make you into the weirdo at the dinner table, or in other social and personal contexts..
I haven't got it YET but judging by that quote alone I want to. Perhaps the hardest part about being a vegan isn't the food, or the shoe shopping (although at times that part is tricky) but attitudes from others.
As argumentative and passionate as I might be, I don't preach, well certainly not to acquaintances anyway. In fact I've even learned that when someone asks you why you are vegan at a meal time to simply reply with 'if you really want to know ask me at a time when your not eating'.
I've learned lot alot about people since becoming vegan. Things that I would never have imagined. The word vegan is simply said (often by other people) and I don't even have to say another word without assumptions being made, and defensiveness, anger, frustration, someone wanting an argument, or to get a rise out of me. Someone proclaiming that it is a faze, or that i will get sick, or that it is crazy or god knows what else but you can be sure I have heard it all before. One guy even told me that his idea of hell was discovering that he couldn't eat meat. A certain ex boyfriend had this whole idea that my veganism (and my concern for anything he disagreed with-womens rights, the environment) was just a way for me to isolate myself and so that I could feel different. Because being different is so much fun (idiot!). Everyone also has a story of someone they knew who was vegetarian once and went back (many who suprise suprise got sick as a result of a french fries diet). Somehow I'm also made out to be this extremist animal rights activist who is yelling murder at the top of my lungs when I'm just sitting there eating my food and wanting to be left alone. Answers are demanded from me-why? (its all in the way you say why, its a dead give away) and a thousand others. You can also be sure that I know my nutrition back to front (a lot of people seem to get their nutrition advice from tv ads- the dairy corporation has done very well for itself in that respect), and I won't even honour a response to the 'but plants have feelings too'-pllllllease stop wasting my time and my energy.
I should probably say that its all in the tone, I have plently of meat eating friends who I never have these conversations with, and plently who ask out of genuine curiosity. I don't mind answering and explaining to them. I was certainly one of those people prior to being a vegan and I guess thats why I was suprised by others reactions towards it. My family is perhaps the worst, you would think I would have created a crime the way my grandmother goes on about it.
Mr T is vegan too but has a very different approach. In fact quite often he will tell me not hide the fact that I'm vegan which I must admit I do at times just to avoid confrontation (see above), sometimes I just want to be without having to explain my lifestyle choices. In a similar way I don’t throw around the f word (yes feminist). Both words create a lot of feelings in people and its not nice to be the person on the receiving end all the friggin time.
He on the other hand will proudly tell everyone he meets and explain it with patience. I have a few theories on this. One i've been a vegan slightly longer than him and therefore have learned my lesson, or otherwise exhausted from explaining/defending my choice within my life whereas it just hasn't got to him YET (pessimistic i admit). Two, different cultures perhaps chinese are more open minded to veganism and not quite as defensive as Australians are (although doesn't quite sound right). Three, he is simply more patient and pessimistic (he thinks that they everyone will be open minded).