On The Precipice of Meat

11 days. It’s been 11 days of no beef, no pork, no poultry. I’ve had fish up the wazoo; sushi for lunch, seared salmon for dinner. In fact, last night’s salmon–which was very good salmon, from McCall’s in Los Feliz–made me a bit queasy, probably because, at that point, I’d become a human aquarium. Today, at lunch, I had a vegetarian meatball hero at The Oaks near where we live and though the vegetarian meatballs were impressively good substitutes for the real thing, they weren’t the real thing. And all afternoon today, after going to the gym, I’ve been craving a hamburger. A big, juicy hamburger. I think I may just snap.

Once again, as I talked about in this essay, it comes down to experience. I’m a man who loves experience. And by giving up meat (beef, pork, poultry) I’ve given up hamburgers, steak, pork chops, pork shoulder, lamb chops, lamb shoulder, meatballs, ribs, brisket, dumplings, soup dumplings, gui zhou chicken, prik king with chicken, seared duck breast with garam masala and grapes, Thanksgiving turkey, Christmas prime rib, and that’s just a tiny fraction of a tiny percentage of all that I’m giving up.

I can’t give it up anymore! Craig is sitting behind me and I think I may swivel in my chair and tell him that, for dinner tonight, we’re getting burgers. He’s going to laugh and say, “I knew it.” Well: I knew it too. In my first post about this I said, “[this’ll] probably end with an Umami Burger somewhere down the road.” Well, maybe not an Umami Burger, but a burger nonetheless. Or ribs at Bludso’s. Or anything with a dead animal in it. I’m throwing in the towel and admitting defeat. Meat, you win.

11 thoughts on “On The Precipice of Meat”

  1. Don’t beat yourself up! You can always join the growing group of individuals who eat meat BUT only do it when it’s local, sustainable and the animals are raised in a caring way. I was at my farmer’s place this weekend and he honestly does love his cows…and his pigs….and his chickens.

  2. My first time at Umami was a Friday during Lent, and I wasn’t eating meat that day. Their portobello mushroom burger was delicious. But next time I go, it will not be Lent, and I will eat MEAT. Welcome back, carnivore!

  3. so where did the burger in the photo come from? Was that dinner that you made? Looking good w/ the carmelized onions and all! Another example of moderation in all things, right?

  4. Keep the faith! I gave up meat for Lent and it was SO HARD. I daydreamed about a fat juicy burgers and bacon straight out of the pan. But it was totally worth it in the end. That first burger back tasted like heaven.

  5. Hiya. Love your blog. Your posting re: this has really resonated with me. I wrote about it awhile back and thought I’d share the link, which I hope is okay. I’m now what I refer to as an eccentric flexitarian–mostly vegetarian, but when I do eat meat it’s often a steak or a burger. In this whole process, I discovered that the half-way meats (chicken, turkey) kinda bored me. http://www.self.com/fooddiet/2007/06/ambivalent-vegetarian

  6. I am a former vege-/pescetarian (5 years of each). Like you, I am an experience junkie. When I first lapsed over 3 years ago, I ate meat at nearly every meal, making up for lost time. I’m down to eating meat about once a week now, and I haven’t had pork in over 6 months–pigs are the most intelligent animal raised for food, not to mention pretty darn cute. When I do eat meat, I try to make sure that it is organic, humanely raised to assuage my guilt. Perhaps this approach would work for you as well?

  7. Leave the non-meat eating to the vegetarians. We can handle it! This life isn’t for everybody, and it isn’t even healthy for everybody. If your body is telling you to eat meat, it probably needs it. Some might think it crazy, but some people are born this way–I just don’t need meat, don’t like meat and my health and satisfaction doesn’t suffer. Go in peace. Just remember if you ever threaten to adopt a pescatarian routine again, we’re going to laugh. ;)

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