Nine years ago tomorrow I quit smoking for good. It is a decision that I have not regretted once. Now I feel the need to tackle another big problem: my weight.
Several years back, I gave up meat for Lent. AS much as I craved it, I stood firm. That Lent I lost weight and felt healthier than I have ever felt in years. Yet the siren song of a Quarter Pounder, of Fried Chicken, of Ribeye was just too much and ate meat like a mad man (which made me sick initially). I usually associated vegetarianism with malnourished hippie types who look anemic. Not being the hippie type ( I like bathing and all), I eschewed vegetarianism as a lifestyle and gobbled meat like a true carnivore.
On Camp Maccabee I came across two young men who were vegetarians. They were not anemic hippie types (though after a few of the outings they desperately needed a shower). IN fact, they looked quite healthy. After teasing them a bit, I started to remember how good I felt that Lent way back when and decided to use my birthday again (as I did with smoking) as a time to start a new path. So, at least for one year, I am going to try the vegetarian diet. Sure, I might drool every time I pass a herd of cows and contemplate a little steak tartar (or steak mooing). But I have battling weight now for 20 years and coming our on the losing end. So, Forest and Beket, either I will thankful for meeting you a year from now or my head will buried in an all you can eat meat buffet, ripping and snarling through the buffet like a lion tearing through a Wildebeest.
So my vegetarianism is not a political statement (I will still loathe PETA), it is a health statement for me, with the possible exception of a certain priest friend of mine whose entire diet consist of meat, I'll not look at you when you eat meat as if you are beating puppies. Ergo, please don't look at me as if I am some wild eyed hippie who needs a bath...even if I need the latter:)