No evangelism here! I don't have the charisma or single-mindedness to pull it off, and my friends wouldn't put up with it anyway, but I do get excited sometimes.
What's got me charged up today is that I discovered (albeit six days late) the 21-Day Vegan Kickoff.
Now before you start fretting that I'm going to go all tofu righteous on you, let me say that some of my favourite people are Committed Carnivores. My mom used to have a cartoon on her fridge: Hagar standing in front of a buffet table, loading his plate with salami, ham, chicken, and roast beef, while his wife Helga asks, "What do you call that?"
Hagar answers, "Salad."
And that sums up Mom's love affair with meat.
But as it is created and processed now, meat is really really expensive. It's costly at the grocery store, and the environment and our health (to say nothing of the animals themselves) take a big hit.
I know this, but I'm not vegan or even vegetarian.
Because change is hard, that's why.
Remember my mom? She created my template for food.
Yet I'm excited about the 21-Day Vegan Kickoff because it makes my life simpler. It lays out some meal ideas and recipes that are well within my scope to create and enjoy.
Luckily, I've had a few decades of experience with beans – my roommate at university was vegetarian and I spent some time travelling around Mexico, which is bean heaven, and even my mom used to make fabulous baked beans. So cooking beans and eating them is not a hardship for me; it's doing more of it that'll take some getting used to.
And the Vegan Kickoff makes it easy, with recipes that look appetizing and do-able. I'm not thinking that I'll never touch another rasher of bacon or Rice Krispie square, but I am thinking that I can do myself, my bank account and my local barnyard animals a favour. It's worth a shot anyway.
Please note that being vegan does not mean eating beans all day every day. I think I'm focusing on them because I'm in the mood for, what else? Mom's baked beans.