17 March 2010

Soy Veggie Bacon...Um, No.

“Yes, I’ll have a non-fat, decaf latte, please. Oh, what the hell? Look, make it a full-fat mocha with extra whipped cream. What the hell, put a slice of bacon on it!” ~ Dr. Frasier Crane,  Frasier

The absolutely hardest part about being a vegetarian is foregoing BACON. I love bacon. Real bacon. Not turkey bacon. But the artificially infused apple hardwood smoked thick cut bacon. YUM freaking YUM. I am not a huge meat eater by any means necessary. I could go weeks without any meat and not even realize it. But I love bacon. In the past I've gotten veggie burgers with bacon! They waiter always looks at me funny when I request it. "You know the bacon isn't vegetarian," they say. "I know," I say licking my lips.

And listen...the tofu or whatever fake version there is, it just does not compare. AT ALL! 

Yesterday when I ordered a veggie burger for lunch, I had to force myself NOT to add bacon on it. And today while ordering a salad, I had to catch myself when listing the ingredients to add. "Cucumbers, Carrots, Onions, Tomatoes, Bac... I mean...um...well...just nevermind."

Some things are easy to give up. Other things take practice until they form into a habit. And then there are still some things that you will never get used to but willingly make the sacrifice for a cause bigger than you.

I just read the mini chapter in Food, Inc titled, "The Dirty Six; The Worse Animal Practices in Agribusiness" and if my own will isn't enough to stop me from eating bacon, all I have to do is remember that mini chapter. A separate post will come soon in regards to this book. Watching the movie is a must but then reading the book gives even more depth to the movie.

What is or was the hardest thing for you to give up in order to live a more sustainable life?


Hannah said...

Have you read The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan yet? It's a definite read, and I also love In Defense of Food and Food Rules (both by Pollan).

I think at this point in life, I'm more about trying to afford a sustainable eating lifestyle, because it DOES cost more. It's been good to realize there's a reason that households spent 25% of their income on food 80 years ago, and that today we spend less than 10%... but it's also hard to readjust life to that when we already don't have much extra (and giving up our two trips to Seattle a year to see my family is not an option). So, in some ways, I think just rebalancing our budget to make more room for food is the biggest challenge. We have adjusted it over the past couple of years, but still can't afford to buy completely local, sustainable food (especially in regards to any meat we may buy - we don't eat a lot, but we do probably use a pound each of chicken and beef each week). This is one reason I'm really excited about our garden for this summer! I'd love to be able to grow almost everything we'll need, and also be able to get a large crop of tomatoes and basil to make/freeze tomato and pesto sauces for the winter.

SLY said...

@Hannah, Haven't read either of those books yet but I've heard great things. I think we say it cost more but when we take into account how much we pay for health issues, we'd see it doesn't cost that much. Or when we prioritize. We say it cost more. But we have a choice in where we allot our money. I also wonder if we factored in how much food we threw away from leftovers and such....how much that would amount too. And how the food we throw away could have been healthy organic food.

Busy Mom said...

I agree that it does cost more. SLY, I love your blog. But you are a single woman living a fabulous life in NY :) I am a mom of two, and identifying a totally sustainable way of living is very difficult.

There are other things that take up my emotional energy/time (getting my kids ready for school, planning meals, making sure hubby is okay, working on my small business) and so convenience is a necessity.

Picking up sustainable/local groceries is an hour from my home, and the basket often doesn't have some of the fruits and veggies I like. Finding organic textiles is a nightmare. I just can't do it all.

I do get frustrated at times when I get the "you're not trying hard enough" vibe from sustainable livers who are, admittedly, doing better than I am.

Through sites like BGLH and Curly Nikki I've learned how to totally 'naturalize' my skin and hair regimen. I've gotten some great tips for energy conservation from your blog. (I'm trying the uniform project but it's impossible to do with growing kids.) But there is only so much I can do. I would love to sit in front of the computer all day and look for green tips, but I can't.

I think that the next huge agenda for the sustainable movement should be to stop framing it as something for the young, energetic, educated and fabulous (like yourself) and something for all of us.

For people who live inner city, for busy moms (like me), for those who didn't go to college.

Convenience is a huge part of change. A lot of times people will change their habits not necessarily out of ideology, but out of convenience.

Just some thoughts.

SLY said...

@busy mom, I'm doing a series coming up on what families can do. I've been doing my research. Stay tuned. Also check out saavybrown.com. She has a family and shows how to live sustainably without breaking the bank. But stay tuned for my family series.