A healthy dose of vegetarian perspective for supper

from "Everything is Illuminated"

I can relate well to this scene. You don't have to miss the subtitles to know what is going on...

The author of the book for this movie, Jonathan Safran Foer (a Jewish vegetarian), portrayed this scene excellently...for rural Ukraine can also be...New Rockford, North Dakota...where my husband and I had only a potato as the family chomped on beef ribs, sans dog (I was never allowed to have, or even touch a dog...they don't let the good angels in, apparently).

My deer hunting, fishing, sheep ranching, halal meat-marketing family must have thought I was joking when I asked, "Hey, Aaron and I don't eat meat, can you make sure there is a vegetable of some sort, we would so appreciate it."

They probably thought, "Oh, what a funny daughter we have...such she'll try to convince us again that she is not a Muslim anymore...some good, way too-rare halal beef ribs will cheer her up!" And I'm being honest, for my special-education teacher mother told me growing up that, "Meat and milk has all the happy chemicals you need, that is why everyone is happy during the holidays!"

Well, I shouldn't complain, I guess a potato is like a vegetable, in an unhealthy way.

And my mother must be right about the happy chemicals, because Buddhists do seem to be the saddest people ever, being all tranquil and pacifist

...Meat and Milk don't seem to make my gun-toting, uber-Arab pride, Saudi Islamic world-view family very sad and reflective about life...I think Meat and Milk make them quite a zealot group. In fact, with that group of demographics, Meat and Milk consumption may be harmful to our society.

That situation puts you in a nice, awkward, reflective position on life, similar to my ever-closer-to-senile, but lovingly wonderful grandmother, who forgets that five minutes earlier I told her "That's okay, I'm good with the salad and vegetables, I don't eat meat" and exclaims loudly, "goodness, Nadia, I forgot to give you some roast, hand that plate over here!"