Thursday, June 24, 2010

"We Believed In Our Grandmother's Cooking More Fervently Than We Believed In God"

-Jonathan Safran Foer, from his book Eating Animals.

Honestly, not since Kurt Vonnegut have I been so taken with a writer's style. My sister let me borrow her copy of Eating Animals because she's a passionate vegan, and she knew how much I loved Everything Is Illuminated and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, the author's other two books.

I have to admit, I'm not so curious about the arguments around the 'to meat or not to meat' issue. I've seen PETA's Meet Your Meat Video. I've heard a lot about the ugliness of factory farming. I have benefited from a year or so of vegetarian eating (it expanded my dining horizons immensely, and gave me a taste for healthier stuff). I love to eat fish. I like to eat red meat when I am frustrated or when I have triumphed in some small way (I know, I am deeply primitive in some ways. The amount of hair on my body is further testament of this). I feel okay about eating meat right now.

But in spite of this non-curiosity, I'm reading Eating Animals, and loving it. This guy can fucking write. I feel like I could read a refrigerator repair manual by this author and come away from it a better person. I'm a comfortable omnivore these days, but three of the most important and impressive people in the world to me (my wife, my son, and my sister) are vegetarians or vegans, and joining their ranks in any way would only be an honor. And as I'm always telling religious folks, I'll be the easiest convert you'll ever make. Just sing a compelling song.


Lodo Grdzak said...

I always see someone on the subway reading one of this guy's books, but have never read anything by him. Thanks for recommendation.

Willie Y said...

I think I am a partial vegetarian because I will alway have lettuce on my burger.

There was a point in my life when I tryed not eating meat but it was the hamburger that drew back in to the carnivore world. And now I can't pass a field of cows without salivating. Ummmmmm belted galloways.

Spencer Troxell said...

He's a treat to read, Lodo.

The hamburger is a tough one, Willie. For me, it was various kinds of fishies, and chinese food.

You've been all about Belted Galloways lately, haven't you? First with that Candy Samples pic on your blog, and now this (ba-dump ching!).

You're a man who knows what he likes.