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Monday, September 18, 2006

Bummer! I've been feeling all good about eating more veggie and vegan, fewer meat-based meals. Better for the Earth, healthier for us. Let's get smug. But I'm reading this amazing book, The Omnivore's Dilemma, by Michael Pollan. It's about asking ourselves, What Should We Eat? He writes about all the ethical and ecological reasons to eat more tofu and less beef. That decision's easy enough. Then he got to chicken. I was telling my son I read that the chickens raised for meat have a crappy life, but it's much better for them than for the hens that lay eggs. He said, Duh, Mom, didn't you see Napolean Dynamite? Touche, my son. Tonight he made a cake with 3 eggs. Mom, he said, the hens that laid these were free-range, that's good, right? Hmmm, maybe. I read somewhere else that the only requirement for saying your chickens are "free-range" is that you leave the hen house door open for 5 minutes once a day.

To tell the truth, I've never really thought about chicken happiness, never weighed the suffering of animals against my desire to have whatever I want for dinner. To be consistent with the 7th UU principle (the inter-dependent web of all existence), I need to at least acknowledge my responsibility in helping to maintain current factory farm and slaughter practices.

On the brighter side, I learned about a new diet GUARANTEED to take off weight and keep it off. It's so simple and healthy. Eat 10 servings of veggies and fruits every day. Most servings are 1/2 cup, so it's not that hard (they say). Today I had 5 servings before I had some cake. Yum.

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