I might lose all of the people that are giving following my blog a shot when I say I read a book by Alicia Silverstone this week, but I like her. I liked her in Clueless, and I’m sure that most of you don’t like to admit you liked her too.
Anyways, Alicia is a full blown vegan. Her book is called The Kind Diet” It’s about moving from being a meat eating cheese loving vegan, step-by-step. It more so interested me because it had so many recipes in it, and being a student I still need a lot of instruction for my cooking and the titled sounded attractive.
I’m a pretty big sucker for these trendy diet-but-let’s-not-call-it-diet things. What I found more interesting was in the preface of the book all about how bad the meat “industry” is for the earth. I don’t want to get into the details, but it contributes to global warming, wastes water, among other things. I mean, I love meat, I really, really do. I love a great steak. Reading these sorts of books makes me sigh. Everything is bad for the environment, it seems. So where do we stop?
This has been an interesting experience for me. Definitely for the better, however sometimes it’s exhausting. Every corner I turn, I’m wasting this or have forgotten that or am eating meat, or a mango that took a long plane ride to reach the Safeway from a tropical country. We all feel this way, I think and sometimes when you start to talk about how different aspects of our lives have different effects on the environment your audience just rolls their eyes.
I’m not going to turn around, throw all my meat out and become vegan. At least not overnight. And nobody expects that. This time when I went to the grocery store, I bought some veggie burgers. I might as well try them. Who knows — maybe it will open up a new path for me outside of this challenge. We should not feel bad for what we have done and sometimes forget to do, and sometimes it does feel that way.
These small changes will stick with the group of us for a while. Being able to tally our stats and maybe open our eyes to the different options that are available in our own towns, as well as reading the other posts to see what other cities are doing to change their impact on the environment.
What I think the best part about the challenge has been so far is not only the opportunity to make change in my own life for the environment I live in, but share it with everybody. I’ve shared this blog on Twitter, Facebook and via e-mail to friends and family. I’ve received so many tips and recommendations to films and other options that I can change inside my home to stay warm at night. The most valuable feedback has been the support from people that reiterate that this really isn’t an easy thing to do, and that it is okay to forget sometimes.
This has turned into a little bit of a ramble, but this diet has really changed my outlook on my own life as well as the city I live in. Somethings have been challenging, as I said not feeling guilty if you eat a mango. At least you’ve stepped towards raw, un-packaged food instead of a fruit cup. It takes baby steps. Smaller changes are easier to maintain and make room for larger ones. If I’ve convinced at least one person to not drink bottled water or think about technological toxic waste, or just use a re-useable coffee cup sometimes — I’m happy.