Stock Photo

Every Wednesday, I consider becoming a vegetarian.

It is all because of a parking situation.


Stock Photo. Of course.

I attend a weekly open-air Farmer’s Market/Flea Market just north of my home that features a cattle auction.

The paved parking lot spots fill up early in the morning. By the time I arrive, I head to the grass lot in a field just behind the cattle barns.

That’s where I see them.

Cattle trucks line up to unload the featured livestock in time for the noon auction.

I can catch a glimpse of the prized bovines as they are being tagged and walked into the huge, century-old barn.

They are very vocal. It is hard not to notice.

When I catch their eye, I cannot buy beef that day.

I might be shamed into living a vegetarian lifestyle.

At the very least, I’ll be heading to the seafood counter, where my meal choice will not feature eyes, or voices.

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88 Responses to Stock Photo

  1. Ritu says:

    That is sure a tough situation!!

  2. AmyRose🌹 says:

    Van, my stomach fell out from under me. That’s my dilemma right there about eating meat. I avoid red meat as much as possible. And yet, there are those chickens … I understand completely. ❤

    • I was raised in a meat and potatoes kind of family, Amy. As I get older (mature☺), it is harder to digest and I’ve turned to fish, poultry, veggies. Still…a good burger or steak calls to me. But never on Wednesday ! ☺

      • AmyRose🌹 says:

        We too have been getting away from meat and potatoes, the same kind of meal we were raised on. Fish, poultry, and sometimes just veggies are what we eat now. Like you, an occasional burger here and there. We’ve tried to go vegetarian but both of our bodies just need that meat protein. So we do the best we can. Sounds to me you are too. 🙂 ❤

      • My husband, raised in an area where there is not as much fresh fish, is still a bit of a carnivore. But, as you say, we are doing the best we can.☺We share a lot of shellfish, and a variety of chicken dishes !

      • AmyRose🌹 says:

        My hubby is allergic to shellfish so we have to be careful. *sighs* It is so challenging to eat healthy in today’s reality. As with your hubby my hubby eats more red meat then I do. I’ll be on the lookout for those shares, Van!!! 🙂 ❤

  3. Prior-2001 says:

    Wow – that was so well said in such succinct words – argh!
    And being the blood type that does well with red meat – (some – not a lot$ I am super glad I am not a vegan/vegetarian! And in one of Ann-Louise’s books she talks about her vegetarian year was the hungriest phase of her life! Ha!
    howver- I have recently found that my body likes soy (think it sometimes gets an incorrect rep from agenda folks) and the soy protein from trader joe’s is inexpensive – mixes easy – satisfies and tastes good…..

    Anyhow – for such a shirt little post you gave us a bit of a haunting image / and important tho!

    • I was there yesterday, and it came to me this a.m. like a flash. The short, spontaneous posts are so much better for me than the planned ones. Thanks for noticing. ☺ I love tofu dishes, but I rarely cook them at home. Not sure why ? Thanks for your thoughtful comment. 🐮

      • Prior-2001 says:

        Well that is probably because it is hard to cook tofu in the van by the river – just kidding – ha!
        And I prefer the unplanned posts for my blog as well- I actually find that blogging in real time is more in sync with my life more – hmmmm – I have a scheduled post sitting now (for a challenge) and it is ok sometimes – but love the spontaneity like this –
        Oh and your post reminds me of the cows on the chick-fil-a ads….
        “Eat more chicken”

      • Ha…yep…those ads speak to me as well. 🐮

      • Prior-2001 says:

        But grass fed beef – oh my – two bites and and I am a new woman ! Ha!
        I just need to get this post out of mind – denial kick in – jk

      • Thanks, Yvette. Hope I didn’t ruin dinner plans. ☺

      • Prior-2001 says:

        Ha! No ma’am – actually have a couple of quiches on the menu (with a tad bit of chicken) – my son is home this week and it is one of his favs –
        Hope you have s good weekend

  4. I don’t eat anything that once had four legs (to clarify I don’t eat humans either). It’s not an ethical choice with me. I just didn’t grow up eating enough meat to be able to tolerate the flavour or texture. I was actually vegetarian for several years. Consequently my kids and I eat a mostly vegetarian diet with a little chicken breast or fish now and then – and sometimes they join my husband in eating red meat but not often. My youngest son, who is 7, is considering becoming fully vegetarian because he’s not sure he likes the idea of eating living things. I need him to be eating a wider variety of vegetables and pulses before I can allow him to go fully vegetarian but I’m supportive. We’ve, therefore, been having many dinner table conversations lately about the impact of meat eating on the environment, ethical consumption, responsible farming, animal welfare and just that whole situation you’ve described of needing to be comfortable with the fact that what you are eating was once a living, breathing creature.

    • Nice to note that our upbringing has such an effect on the way we think about food. I never went fully vegetarian, Laura, but when the fruit and vegetable choices dominate the plate, I always feel better. Thanks for sharing your experience. ☺

  5. Fortunately for me, I only eat chicken and fish anyway. When Cordelia and I went to the “Meet A Cow” event (/ [hint hint]), they showed a video of commercial dairy farming that was meant to put everyone off meat and dairy (including chickens and eggs). Being as I’m a tough old broad, however, Cordelia and I went to dinner immediately after. I prefer to just not think about what I’m eating – and I’m sure some of your readers will have something to say about that!

    • sometimes there’s a lot to be said for thinking our meat comes in little plastic cellophaned trays…………..

    • We lived very close to dairy farms, poultry producers, etc. And we often went to the source. The first time I saw that “chicken dancing with its head cut off”, which really happens, I was sure I’d never eat chicken again. But, I did. ☺ Seeing/smelling the pigs did turn me against pork for a bit, but oddly enough, never against bacon ??? Thanks, CM. ☺

      • Um, bacon doesn’t really come from pigs. It’s a product created in a secret government lab as a way to force people into addiction so they will continue to support the meat industry by ordering bacon burgers. Soon there’s going to be a bacon tax.

      • I’d almost be willing to pay ! Thanks for the laugh, CM. ☺☺☺

  6. I know exactly where you’re coming from, and you might be interested in my post from March 2014
    Since then, we have had steak once, and that was for our silver anniversary celebration in May.

  7. I can totally relate to this!

  8. kingmidget says:

    Simply for health reasons, I want to eat less meat, but it’s a hard habit to break.

  9. Oh, Van. I can so relate. I watch these FB clips showing animals of all kinds playing, caring, helping, protecting, mourning, cajoling, expressing humor! I think about how much more intelligent and sentient they are than we give them credit. How inconvenient it would be to recognize them as more than dumb meat. We only eat organic, pasture raised, local meat now, but less and less with each passing month. I just got an idea for a short story! Thanks. 😀

  10. joey says:

    I’m just not big on meat, especially red meat. If I eat meat several days in a row, I feel unwell. This tells me I shouldn’t eat much meat, so I don’t. The complications of buying ethical meat enhance this for me.
    Seafood and I, well, we get along, but I’m landlocked, so that’s not always a delicious choice.
    For protein, I eat a lot of beans and greens, and it is nice they don’t have eyes.
    Dairy and I must never part ways. ❤ Dairy ❤

    • Hubby raised in Pittsburgh. For them, fish was mostly canned tuna. He has come around over the years. ☺ And I can pass off a meatless meal pretty well, but we both still crave that burger once in a while. Dairy…yes !

      • joey says:

        Yes, we eat red meat now and again. Culver’s burgers are chosen at least once a month. I had a steak last month. Nearly ate all 6 ounces, lol! I hadn’t had one in two years, but then the urge struck, and it was delicious 🙂

      • Family enjoys Texas Roadhouse. I order fish or chicken-fried steak. Say, what ???☺

      • joey says:

        Oh mine too! I order grilled shrimp, and more importantly, Vodka Peach Tea!!! 😀

      • ☺ I have a great story about my first Vodka experience, first hangover, etc. I’ll have to share that some day. (Not a Vodka fan since. ) I’m on board with Peach tea, though. Thanks, Joey.

  11. Erika Kind says:

    That was exactly the reason why I was vegetarian for many years! And still I rather skip meat!

    • Many try, but there is the allure of meat for so many of us, Erika.💕 We eat much less of it now.

      • Erika Kind says:

        Yes, there is. My son is a cat of prey. And it is funny that his girlfriend is vegetarian! But he started eating a lot more vegetables and other meat-free food too over the past years. So there is hope… lol!

  12. This is something that I have been struggling with. My husband love’s red meat more than poultry and the cow looks as if it’s mooing in accusation.

  13. Val Boyko says:

    When we face the reality, it can be a wake up call. Is it shame we feel … or a higher integrity wanting to be honored…
    I feel the same Van!

  14. LaVagabonde says:

    I haven’t eaten red meat for 26 years, and poultry for 19. If I was starving and there was no other option, I could probably eat poultry, but the idea of eating a mammal is so disgusting to me now. At least you buy your beef from a place where they’re treated relatively humanely.

  15. Those faces…….. hard to ignore.

  16. Bradley says:

    Cows for auction? That must be one huge farmers market.

  17. Nurse Kelly says:

    I feel the same way. And I always hate to pass the transport trucks with all the holes on the sides that are full of animals heading to the slaughter house… especially in the winter time. We eat more meat during the summer grilling season it seems, but only locally sourced. I won’t go into my wacky diet, which I don’t make my family follow, but it’s all based on what I know through my job. As long as you are consuming good protein sources, you don’t need to eat meat, as I’m sure you know. Great post, Van. xo

  18. George says:

    On occasion, and not very often, I have a burger but aside from that I don’t eat beef at all. Fish and sometimes chicken for me. That’s why I don’t stare at them..:)

  19. I totally get this…I would be ashamed too…

  20. Or shamed (damn autocorrect)

  21. Meat tastes nice – still, I couldn’t face a chicken or an egg after seeing a couple of videos where they toss live male chicks into a grinder, and then the other creatures followed after reading Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs and Wear Cows by Melanie Joy. It’s fun experimenting with things like Aquafaba and nutritional yeast, but there is no substitute for the taste – it’s all in the personal decision though – nobody’s forced to do much really, so I don’t partake anymore. 🙂

    • I’ll have to check out the Melanie Joy book. (And I’ll Google “Aquafaba”..a new term to me.) It is a personal choice, and in the U.S., seems to be defined by region. Living in the Midwest and western states for a while, all of the best restaurants were steak houses. I grew up on the east coast, where fresh seafood was in abundance. Thanks for your input, Jo. ☺

  22. amommasview says:

    Every time I see them (cows, pigs, sheep and so on) in the trucks, knowing where they are most probably heading… I consider going vegetarian. But then… I do enjoy eating meat…

    • There was an abandoned slaughter house in the woods near my home, right along the railroad tracks. Strange-looking iron fixtures remained on the walls and ceiling. As a child, never gave it much attention. (from the 1700’s, we were told).

  23. lbeth1950 says:

    I’ve always loved cows.

  24. AMEN! It’s hard when you see those big eyes, their only crime is the meat on their bones.
    Thinking of you.

  25. Laura says:

    Oh, that photo….my niece is a vegan. I’ve often wanted to ask her why she made that decision, but I’m secretly afraid she’ll make so much sense I’ll be forced to find a way to live that lifestyle!

  26. Pingback: Featured Posts 114 – Share your posts. | a cooking pot and twistedtales

  27. Eugenia says:

    I came over from Jackie’s blog. It is good to meet you. Cows look so sad – hmmm – I wonder why.

  28. så sant som det är sagt! får vi kopiera inlägget och länka till dig på vår bloggis? kram på dig bästa hanna!!!!!!!!!

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