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'meat' the word obfuscators

by Steven W Rodgers

Anyone still remember the good ol' days, when vegetarians, as the name aptly implies, is one who eats only food derived from plants? Makes sense. But then, someone, somewhere along the way—obviously a vegetarian wannabe—thought:

“Is eschewing all animal byproducts a realistic and viable means of expression? After all, who doesn't want to indulge in the sinful delights of ice cream, bagels with cream cheese, deep dish pizza?”

As a result, some genius apparently said "I know! Let's invent a new word to replace the word ‘vegetarian.’ We'll call it 'vegan.'

Now, a vegan can mean what a vegetarian meant all along—one who only eats plants. No cheese, no milk, no sour cream, no eggs…. And the pseudo vegetarians can retain the cache of the title, without having to forgo the delights of animal derivatives.

Ah, but the word obfuscators were not finished obfuscating. Some of them thought:

"But...but... I like fish! Surely salmon is not really an 'animal.' Surely I can get away with having some lake trout, fried up fresh and served with a chilled glass of chianti, and still call myself a …. Vegan? No? Vegetarian? No? Fish are actually animals????”

No problem, we'll just invent another unnecessary word, and push this ridiculously euphemistic game to even greater heights. Pescatarian! Yes! That sounds right! A pescatarian henceforth shall be one who only eats plants.... and cheese, eggs and butter .... and FISH …. Oh maybe on rare occasions a bite of shrimp or chicken cordon bleu!

What are these strange words except reminders that one's will power has failed them? I don't blame them for succumbing to the temptation of melted butter on oven-fresh bread. Just please don't condone these absurd non-words to legitimize this abhorrent practice.

Now excuse me as I indulge in a dinner of prime rib, to be topped off with chocolate mousse smothered in whipped cream.

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