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  1. Respect Thy Food

    February 17, 2013 by betaman

    It’s been quite a few years now since I first realized the importance of quality over quantity when it comes to liquor. The times of consuming mass quantities just for the drunk are long gone. I know now that life is way too short for cheap gin.

    The same is true when it comes to eating meat, though it’s only been a couple years since I first started focusing quality over quantity. I haven’t eaten meat just for meat’s sake in a long time. Movies like Food, Inc. and Baraka helped me become mindful about my meat consumption, but I still enjoyed an organic lamb chop or the occasional local grass fed beef from a farmers market.

    I understand why the wife made me eat the whole shank of lamb I was given one day while working at the ranch last summer. It took me a few days, but to not finish it would be disrespectful to the animal. I respected every last savory bite, believe me.

    Having been vegetarian now for only a week, I’m already developing a new found respect for my food and where it comes from. After watching Dive!: Living off America’s Waste, I am also growing more dumbfounded at how much food Americans throw out every day. Meanwhile those pork chops still lie buried in the fridge, though they are no longer calling my name.


  2. My Flexitarian Diet Logistics

    February 14, 2013 by betaman

    First, don’t call it a diet. Diets don’t work, ask Dr. Jenn. This is a lifestyle choice for better health and nutrition.

    Second, I’m sure there are hard core vegan types who would laugh or call me a hypocrite. Well I’m not going there. I’ve enjoyed plenty of tasty vegan meals, but it’s better we just not go there.

    Third, I am not nor am I sure I ever could be a strict vegetarian. I am now one of those lacto-ovo-pesce types. I am an omnivore and I like my cheese, eggs, and fish.

    What I have done is given up consuming land animal meats, for now. That means no more chicken. No more steak, pork chops, or hamburgers, and no more lamb, mmm… lamb.

    I Am:


    This semi-vegetarianism is defined by various sources as one who eats a primarily plant-based diet with the occasional inclusion of meat products. For this little project of mine, however, my only meat product shall either swim, crawl, or attach themselves to the ocean floor. Any questions?

    Recommended Reading:

    The Flexitarian Diet: The Mostly Vegetarian Way to Lose Weight, Be Healthier, Prevent Disease, and Add Years to Your Life

    Spice Up Your Life: The Flexitarian Way

    The Part-Time Vegan: 201 Yummy Recipes that Put the Fun in Flexitarian

    The Healthy Hedonist: More Than 200 Delectable Flexitarian Recipes for Relaxed Daily Feasts

    Almost Meatless: Recipes That Are Better for Your Health and the Planet

  3. Challenges Need not Be So Challenging

    February 13, 2013 by betaman

    So, why go vegetarian? I mean, aside from the health benefits and positive impact on our planet. Why me, when I’m relatively healthy and love a good piece of meat so much!

    Someone near and dear to my heart, who wishes to keep such matters private, will be undergoing painful treatments for the next 24 weeks or so. Others I love have vowed to make their own personal sacrifices during this time to show their support. I considered a few different ways to do the same but nothing felt just right. Then I decided to give up meat.

    Nobody has challenged me to do this but myself. I am my own coach, judge and scorekeeper. And rather than look at it as a sacrifice with challenges to overcome everyday, I have decided to make this a game I can enjoy.

    Yesterday I could’ve had a hot pastrami sandwich, an all time personal favorite. Yes, I may have enjoyed eating it at the time, with my new goal clearly in my mind I felt even better saying no. Besides, I enjoyed some of the best Dim Sum I’ve had in a very long time instead. And the proud feeling I had after picking out and tossing the succulent center of my steamed pork bun has lasted much longer than the temporary bliss I would have surely enjoyed by tasting it.

    I would much rather reign triumphant over these tiny things than feel like a failure for a moment of physical pleasure. So I play this game to win. And every time I pass on the tasty meat dish, I score.

    Challenge? Bring it!

  4. The Epiphany

    February 8, 2013 by betaman

    We all must make sacrifices.

    People in third world countries sacrifice basic necessities like clean water without even having a choice. Cancer patients sacrifice quality of life for more time with their loved ones. Diabetics will give up an appendage, or sometimes two, for the lifestyle choices they make.

    I have my own personal reasons for giving up something I enjoy so much. Meat.

    fresh organic grass fed lamb chops

    Organic Grass Fed Lamby Chops

    One would think that after living with a vegetarian for 17+ years, this would be easy. But don’t underestimate my love of a tender charbroiled pink chop from a grass fed lamb I knew by name.

    This journey of better health and dietary contentment may not last forever, that is not my goal. But we shall see what happens over the next 25 weeks as a vegetarian.

    These are the chronicles of a meat lover gone veg.