Sometime back, Pepper had written a post on ‘meat being cool’ – I’ve been wanting to put some of my thoughts here ever since I read that and here it is…
Yes, Im a vegetarian. Pure vegetarian or not – Im not sure. Maybe I should say, Im an eggetarain? But does that matter when in a corporate environment, or for that matter, any place, you want to make friends?
For me, it doesnt matter at all. Im a vegetarian by choice-though my religion tells me not to eat meat-my parents have never forced it on me, or on my brother. Non vegetarian food doesnt get cooked at home, just like every house where some other veggie doesnt get cooked. Simply because we dont like to eat it. My parents have always told us-if you like it, or if you are in a place where you hardly get anything vegetarian-dont starve yourself. You need to eat, you need the nutrition – so eat! Doesnt matter if its fish, chicken or anything else.
Having said that, I have no issues with any of my friends,collegues eating non-vegetarian food. I have no problems sitting at the same table, sitting next to them while I eat my food and they eat theirs. Also, thankfully,so far I’ve been lucky with friends who respect my choice of food. And I respect theirs. No force on either side to taste something that we dont want to.
Now, why all this preamble? Always at workplace ours is a mixed group-there are people who swear by their non-vegetarian food and there are some like me who ask them to enjoy theirs and enjoy my potato and paneer. But I’ve heard stories-stories where a vegetarian friend refused another friend to cook non-veg food even egg in their PG. Because she couldnt stand the smell! And she insisted that she not eat non-veg food whenever they went out together either! So, when this friend got non-veg food, she apologised to me and asked me if its ok that she sits next to me and eats or else she could move places. I was aghast! I told her that Im totally OK with her eating her food while I eat mine. Its so immature to expect someone else to follow your rules-especially when it comes to food and tastes. I dont see anything wrong with people eating non-veg food.
Another time, I said, I ate eggs – As a kid the doctor had advised mom to give eggs to both me and bro as it helped give the missing proteins. And now, Chutku’s pediatritian too suggested that I give him eggs-so I give him-we eat eggs either as omlettes or boiled. When I said that, some people were shocked-I was told that I shouldnt call myself a vegetarian at all! And that Im not a vegetarian in the true sense. They had no answer when I asked them if they ate cakes with eggs in them – howz that excusable then? Why these double standards? So either ways- Why do you need to judge a person by what they eat?! Their food, their choice- they are not into any bad habits or into any addictions – right? And who are we to stop someone from enjoying their food?! What if someone scrunched their noses and made faces at our veggie food? We wouldnt like that now-would we? Its such a basic need-and we have to have an idea/comment and judge based on even that?!
Edited to Add: This is my post for Jan 10th. Since I had network issues and couldnt post it yesterday-posting it on the 11th. Will do a seperate post for the 11th before the end of day!