Friday, July 25, 2008

It's the Friday Soy and Sperm Hour!

I’ve never quite understood vegetarianism. I love a fluffy bunny as much as the next girl, but I love Thumper even more when he’s cooked up in a pot with a lovely red wine sauce. I’d have a cheeseburger for dessert if it was considered even mildly socially acceptable.

My meat-related moral dilemmas don’t revolve around veal, foie gras, factory farming or sustainable species of fish. Instead, a dinner date with me is like a cross between Sophie’s Choice and Wild Kingdom.
Since it takes just a couple of people to polish off a chicken, and a whole soccer team to eat a cow, is it morally superior to eat beef so fewer animals lose their lives? But, cows are mammals. So does a mammal’s life matter more than a bird’s? And pigs are the only other animal that sunburns - as a fair-skinned woman, am I betraying a kindred spirit every time I eat pork? And what about insects? If I eat a grasshopper taco at Oyamel, I am robbing dozens of merry little bugs of their lives. The thought gives me pause, then I remember how much they taste like extra-crispy bacon and I’m chomping away.

I think the best thing about giving up meat would be the moral certitude. Meat production is bad for the environment, so the vegetarian gullet is like a spit-shined Prius. And who doesn’t love pigs, cows, and chickens? They’re so cuddly! I mean, don’t you just want to give that chicken a kiss on its tiny adorable little beak?

On the other hand, I’ve always been a little baffled by male vegetarians. I like men who like meat, beer and boobs. Most vegetarian dudes admit they originally gave up meat to impress a girl. That's dedication. And they will cheerily serve up meatless Philly cheesesteaks and tofu scrambles. But I have a little bit of trouble taking them seriously.

Thankfully, I have alert reader Kevin to tell me why. This article landed in my inbox yesterday. Soy is bad for the swimmers! Ergo, male vegetarians have lower sperm counts! Their boys are too busy looking for that perfect tofu burger to get to the egg. And the ones that can get to the egg won’t implant, as contact with the egg would violate their vegan principles.

So, a vegetarian is never going to knock me up. It’s not snobbery, it's not outdated standards of manliness, it's not a moral failing. My reluctance to date vegetarians is merely the gentle hand of evolution.


Jamie said...

This is the best news I've heard since I read that drinking raises your income. Not that there was a snowball's chance in hell I'd ever become a vegetarian, but it's nice to once again be vindicated in my unhealthy lifestyle choices.

Shannon said...

Jamie, if you exist on a diet of steak and red wine, you'll be ROLLING in chicks and job opportunities.

Lemmonex said...

Drinking raises your income! This is fabulous news.

Oh, vegetarians. I think you are so silly. I know some of you have real beliefs, but please don't lecture me as I eat my steak while you wear your leather belt.

Jamie said...

I saw the best tee shirt ever in New Orleans this spring: "For every animal you don't eat, I shall eat three."

More drinking research: New Study Finds College Binge Drinking To Be A Blast

Shannon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shannon said...

Lemmonex - I should be a MILLIONAIRE by now! As for the lectures, I usually counter with tales of all those cute little mice that get clipped every time a combine chugs across a field of wheat. Rats of Nimh was a documentary, y'know!

Jamie - And I shall have four! Even if it gives me a terrible stomachache.

hey pretty said...

Dating a vegan was one of the single most miserable experiences of my long and sorted romantic history.

Dave B. said...

I've never really understood the decision to not eat meat. I always thought it went against our inherent omnivorous nature.

Personally, I love cow.

I drink cow. I eat cow. I wear cow. I walk in cow.

Can't wear carrot. Well, not stylishly, anyway.

It's just nice to be sure that the only damage my sperm have endured has been from soccer, martial arts, pot use, cigarette smoking, and the time that stripper in the stiletto heels wasn't watching where she was putting her feet.

Thanks for letting me know my diet has been somewhat helpful for my reproductive ability.

[F]oxymoron said...

When she said she’d cook dinner, I was stoked. While preparing dinner, I was confused. After dinner, that was when I knew. I’ll never be a card carrying vegetarian. And tofu is disgusting.

Shannon said...

HP - remember when I was dating a diabetic vegetarian? Fun while it lasted, didn't last long.

Dave, your sperm count is safe with us!

Foxy, tofu is so nasty. No matter what you do to it, it's gooey and chewy.

Michael said...

I like men who like meat, beer and boobs.

I love beer!

Shannon said...

Michael - you didn't say anything about meat or boobs. Are you a gay vegetarian?

Gilahi said...

I went vegetarian because my family has a nasty habit of dropping dead at 50 due to heart- and cholesterol-related issues. I just turned 51. So far, I'm ahead.

I will never, ever lecture anyone else about their choice to eat what they please. This is a choice that I've made for me and my health. You may not have the health risk issues or you may not care, but I've made my choice and I'll allow you to make yours without sitting in judgement.

That goes for most other "moral" issues as well.

Shannon said...

Gilahi, I don't have anything against vegetarians in general. I just like to cook, and I mostly make 1950s housewife food. So I avoid dating vegetarians because they won't love my Carolina pulled pork.

Gilahi said...

I love Carolina pulled pork. I just don't eat it. Same goes for Popeye's fried chicken.

Shannon said...

You ingest its aroma, then? And I had Popeye's yesterday. DELICIOUS, and I don't care who knows it!

Anonymous said...

I don't quite understand moral vegetarianism, as opposed to the health-related kind. Especially those who do it out of solidarity with Nature. I mean, many animal species eat meat, don't they? I don't think a lion has moral qualms about tucking into a gazelle. Then, there's the fact that our early ancestors wouldn't have survived the Ice Age if they hadn't eaten meat or worn fur. Vegans? I really don't get them. Even orthodox Hindus drink milk and eat milk products (cheese made without rennet). As for environmental concerns, much of the land used for cattle-grazing is unsuitable for grain production. Of course, there is the issue of cow-produced methane. I hear cow-farts are a real menace to air quality.


Gilahi said...

Unfortunately, Shannon, a lot of my living is vicarious.

Shannon said...

Only Clio could go from morality to cow farts in a single paragraph.

I think a lot of vegetarians object to inhumane treatment of animals. Of course, it's inhumane to eat them, but it's cruel to keep them in tiny cages, etc.

Shannon said...

And, Gilahi, hence your presence here. I do stupid stuff so y'all don't have to.

Anonymous said...

Mistress Shannon, I was but speaking the truth (about cows, I mean).

I am worried by the way animals are treated in factory farms; I think it's a disgrace. Don't know how to solve the problem, though, except by buying direct from farmers.


Dave B. said...

We could fix the problem of the way cows are treated in factory farms by eating them faster.

More meat in our stomachs means less cows in the field.

Problem solved.

Justin said...

Wow. I want steak for breakfast right now.

That said, I do sometimes eat food marketed at vegetarians specifically. Sunflower and Whole Foods both do a good vegan General T'so's Chicken, and I like those little pouches of vegetarian Chili - like 60% of your daily fiber and protein or something, it's ridiculous. They helped me lose a lot of weight a few years back.

A friend said at dinner she'd never heard of girls looking oddly at men who ordered salad as an entree, but when asked, she said "Yeah, I would definitely knock him down a few points for that". Not really a vegetarian issue, but more of a boobs - beer - meat thing. Of course, I think such notions are silly, but de gustibus non est disputandum.

Shannon said...

Clio - Mistress Shannon? OK, who told you about my senior year Halloween costume?

Dave - Brilliant! I'll have a dozen cheeseburgers in your honor.

Justin - Sperm count jokes aside, vegan General Tso's makes my heart weep. Though I do love a good vegetarian chili.

And, yeah, a man who ordered a salad probably wouldn't get a second date. Meat, beer and boobs!