Let’s face it — Thanksgiving was not created for vegetarians. It’s a well-known fact that pulling that shiny Butterball from the oven is, indeed two-fifths of the fun of Thanksgiving (Grandma’s antics provide the other three-fifths). When you take away the turkey, a herbivore’s delight are the mashed potatoes, the cranberry relish, and the cold pizza that your brother brought home from work last night.
Due to working conflictions of other family members, we’ve not eaten our dinner yet. This is kind of a problem, because aside from the bowl of oatmeal I ate for breakfast/lunch, I’ve been gnawing on cold pizza all afternoon. I’m not blaming this on anyone. Clearly I could run to my refrigerator right now and shove a package of deli meat in my mouth if I so pleased, but in keeping with my desire to remain veg, I’ve restrained myself. Next week marks one year without meat, and I intend to reach that mark and then some. (Note: This is the longest I’ve stuck with anything, ever. Not even my longest relationship, or consecutive months of not shaving my legs beat this.)
I made a grocery store run this afternoon with the intention of buying a bag of potatoes, and a side intention of finding a turkey substitute. In a city where 0.5% of residents claim vegetarianism, and the other 99.5% are on a strict meat and potato diet, I found nothing but buffalo sausage and birds. I was actually skeptical to ask where the tofu was, for fear of that look…you know, the look, the one that reminds you that tofu was not eaten by pilgrims at any national celebration of citizenship and/or discovery. The look that says, “You and your vegetable-eating psycho environmentalist inconveniences of friends are the exact reason why my faith in humanity is waning.” The look that says, “Substitute? Why not just eat potatoes and cold pizza?” I walked out of the store with a sack of potatoes.
On second thought, an orchestra of awkward stares at the questionable turkey substitute on my plate would, in fact, not be worth the trouble. Dodging the questions to follow could prove tricky (“That looks like…what is that?”), and aside from being nutritional, I can’t think of any reason why it would beat cold pizza and potatoes.
One thing to be thankful for: Pumpkin pie. No meat in that.
Happy day, all.