Friday, March 9, 2012

To Meet the Meat

I have a confession.

I quit eating bacon. I just had to put that out there so there wasn't any confusion. I buy it. I cook it. I don't eat it, however. I don't eat bacon anymore. There I said it. (a big sigh of relief)

If we're being honest here, I can tell you, too, that it has been a few months. Although the other day, I did have a BLT but then felt horrible about it! The guilt over the calories wasn't worth it.

I'm pretty sure I'll be required to check my "Texan" card at the door. Bacon is big business. It's pseudo-chic now.

They even have chocolate-covered bacon and bacon-scented candles just in case you needed some "meat" aroma circulating through your adobe. Romantic, huh?
Bacon Man Candle

I can see this making an appearance in a white-trash love scene.

"Honey, hold my beer. I gots ta light the candles."

She smiles and squeals with delight. Eagerly holds his bottle of Old Milwaukee and blurts, "Candles? How romantic, Bubba!"

"Oh yeah, got 'em down at the bait store. They remind me of my favorite thing."

"The vacation we keep talking about taking to the islands?"

"Hell no, woman! I'm talking about bacon!"


><><> SLAM ><><>

"Lorene???? Lorene????"

And he snuggles down with his beer and his man scent.


Or, for the man that has everything? How about a bacon wallet? Raw Bacon Weave ID Holder
Just what I want in my back pocket. A weaving of fat and listeria-laden salmonella strips. Sounds appetizing, no?!

And if you cut your finger? You just might need... oh yes... Bacon bandaids!
Bacon Bandages

I understand the whole idea of a novelty gift but I think GaGa's meat dress must haven some dork a meat erection and he went to a whole new freakish level with the whole bacon thing. Yuck.

I could always bring up Biblical talk, too, since I have been known to do that on occasion -- it says in the Bible you're not supposed to eat pork. Deuteronomy I think. I could go look it up but frankly, I'm going to just go on a hunch here and say, if you want to fact check my blog. Go ahead -- waste your own time.

But it's not about the Biblical direction on dietary consumption (for me) that led me astray, it's about the nutrition (or rather lack thereof) from eating a crispy piece of fat. The risk doesn't seem worth the reward. I don't feel guilty about much -- just the way I tick -- but I am my own worst enemy when it comes to consumption-guilt. It's a weight thing. If I knew how to break the cycle, I would. We are our own worst enemies, I've found.

Ok, well, that's not entirely true, the media is the devil and everyone's worst enemy but second to that, it's ourselves.

But, I tangent... (I know, shocker, right?) So, no bacon!

When you're looking to clean up not only your diet, but your body, you start taking a second look at a lot of things. Reassessment, if you will.

Now, the fact remains that most of my grocery shopping has and is done around the perimeter of the grocery store like it's "supposed" to be. Ask the experts, they'll tell you. You know: lean meats, diary, produce, yadda, yadda, yadda.

However, I have children.

I have active children.

And, believe it or not (and I know this will be a shocker for you), I am NOT superwoman. (I know, it was really hard to admit that just now. Don't say it again so that I don't have to believe it.)

I mean, when I have time, yes, I will bake my own bread. I like to bake (and cook) from scratch because I simply don't like not being able to pronounce what is on the side of a package. But seeing that I am neither SuperWoman (shut UP I can't stand hearing that) nor a miracle worker, I don't always have time to bake from scratch, I do resort to pre-packaged baked goodness. Granted, it's typically whole wheat, whole grain sugar-free loaves purchased in a store wrapped in a plastic bag. And, I'm totally okay with that.

Furthermore, the thought that someone can add something to prepackaged food that leaves it shelf stable for YEARS... that just really oogies me out. I'm sorry, but things are SUPPOSED to go bad. Buy what you need and then go back and buy more! Duh!

When my kids are grown, they can buy whatever kind of bread they want. Until then, mama shops so you eat what is put in front of you. Period.

The big contention in this house (for me) is meat. Big meat eaters. I'm not. I could easily lose red meat and pork from my diet and be pretty content. I didn't say COMPLETELY but I don't feel I would miss much.

I do like chicken, fish and seafood, though... so I couldn't go complete tree-huggin-granola-head-Earth-lovin'-don't-eat-anything-with-eyes-I'm-going-to-throw-red-paint-on-your-fur-and-burn-your-leather-boots. That's not me. Extremists annoy me. Seriously. Plus, I want a pair of Old Gringos! Yeah, PETA scum -- bite my boot!

You see, not too terribly long ago, I was just sitting in bed one night and a thought popped into my head.


Yes, self?

You worked for the meat industry. You're aware of what they do, just now how they did it.

Hmm... you're right. Let's research.

And so I did.

In short, I was aware that cattle were grown, transported to a processor, processed, packaged, and then sold. It's a neat clean little "idea" that the majority of us live with.

However, I can't get over the idea of how they're killed. I wanted to know what exactly they do to kill the animals. Morbid, yes, I know. But they're my thoughts and it's my head!

I think could totally deal if I knew that processors shot every animal and they (the animals, obviously) died immediately and were then processed. Seriously, that -- I think I could deal with. It's the thought that they're slaughtering animals who are NOT dead yet and that DO feel pain.

It's haunting.

And you know, that the people that work in these places don't feel the same about animals that... well, people like me feel or they'd be hugging them all, giving them blankets when it's cold, providing them shelter, feeding them green grass and running them a bubble bath scented with lavender oil... providing each with a personalized collar and a bell, too. Don't forget the bell. I mean, they're called "cow bells" for goodness' sake!

Yes, I'm that bad. My DOGS have electric blankets for Pete's sake! I am an animal lover, through and through. Animals (dogs, especially) are the only unconditional love you will get here on Earth... ever. We could learn something from them.

Those people that work at processing plants have to have some complete detachment to the fragility and preciousness of life and living creatures. I seriously think they could all become serial killers and go on dismembering sprees throughout the countryside without a second thought. I don't know how you could do that for a living and still have compassion for any animals' suffering.

I've seen the undercover videos on the internet shot of animals that are not deceased hanging from their back legs squealing in the most agonizing pain I could imagine... it's filmed because it obviously DOES happen. I would like to think that it never would but I'm human and know if there is a human element -- the design is automatically flawed.

So, in some twisted train of thought -- it's continue to consume knowing that I potentially caused suffering or wipe that image out of my head by not. Right now, I'm pretty much choosing "not." Yes, I have a vivid imagination and those are thoughts that haunt me. Bite me.

I mean, I've hunted. My family -- growing up -- were hunters. Our entire front room was covered in dead things and skins and stuffed critters and fish. They hunted dove, quail, deer... whatever. They hunted. Well... they "hunted." I put it in quotes because it's hardly "hunting" if you're in a warm, heated blind playing target practice to your pet deer that have learned to come visit your electric feeder at certain times of the day. You're shooting wild pets at that point -- that's NOT hunting -- just so we're clear about that.

And, I have no problem WITH hunting, if you're going to eat it. I don't like the killing just to kill type thing. But that's another rant for another day.

So, although I did shoot a deer on my own, I wasn't a hunter.

I cried.

I never shot another one.

Don't get me wrong, I totally get the whole "beast of burden" thing but the idea that they are suffering because of me... it haunts me.

I love animals.

I want a cow (for a pet). You've seen Elise at the State Fair of Texas. She's got a sweet gig! All cows should be so lucky!

I also want a bear... but we're not talking about bears.

As an aside, Josh wants an alpaca or a llama. I'm not sure if he was just being funny, but at least you can realize that strangeness is apparently genetic. We're all doomed. It may be advantageous for us to join the circus and just care for their critters but then I'd be struggling to not throat punch the PETA protesters at the shows. I'd certainly have some assault charges laid against me if I were to join the circus.

Any-who, I tangent... yes... me...tangent...again. It's my blog....

So, I've slowly been cutting back on my consumption of red meat and have completely wiped out bacon and pork. Amazing that it took this long just to say that, but...

You know... it's my blog... and I like words... and tangents... and overuse of the ellipsis.


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