Look! These look tasty. They are not your enemies.
Look! These look tasty. They are not your enemies.

INFOGRAPH: Are You a Vegetarian?

Apparently, the stars have aligned and it's Vegetarian Weekend here in the United States of Where's-The-Beef.

Today is Hug-A-Vegetarian Day, sponsored by those lovable but disturbed whackjobs over at PETA. Not content with trying to get fish renamed "sea kittens" and actually driving more business to a Santa Ana McDonald's by being completely indistinguishable from the usual sign-twirlers, they've designated an entire day dedicated to really uncomfortable greetings with total strangers.

("Hello! I noticed you ordered a Boca Burger, sir. May I give you a hug on this auspicious Hug-A-Vegetarian Day?")

Tomorrow is World Vegetarian Day, a holiday concocted by the North American Vegetarian Society. It kicks off the month of October, designated by that august association as Vegetarian Awareness Month.

The question is, what's a vegetarian? If you sneak fish now and then, are you still a vegetarian? (Answer: no.) If you just hate the taste of beef and lamb but have no problem with a quick stop for the Colonel's original recipe, are you a vegetarian? (Hint: no.)

We've devised a handy guide to whether you're a vegetarian or not:

Click for a larger version.
Click for a larger version.
Dave Lieberman

All snark aside, vegetarianism's not a bad thing. All of us could stand to eat a great deal less meat--though I will give up my steak when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers. Meatless Monday is a good start--just don't eat meat on Monday. It's not too hard to do, actually, especially in the peak of the harvest that we're in right now. I don't have trouble finding vegetarian and even vegan recipes to cook, and I refuse to resort to rubbery crap such as seitan and texturized vegetable protein.

Maybe don't go around hugging a vegetarian today. Maybe just consider dropping meat out of your meals once in a while.

Follow Stick a Fork In It on Twitter @ocweeklyfood or on Facebook!


All-access pass to the top stories, events and offers around town.

  • Top Stories


All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >