“I’m a vegetarian but I eat chicken…”
This sort of ridiculous statement is demonstrative of the type of fussy eating that I abhor the most. No, you are most certainly not a vegetarian; a vegetarian does not eat meat or fish, and chicken is most definitely the flesh of an animal. That is an indisputable fact. Really, you are just a fussy eater attempting to hide under an alternative label. Saying you’re a veggie is the equivalent of holding forth about your alcohol consumption: “I’m tee-total… Well, except for the odd wee whisky, now and again”, or your views on religion “I’m an Atheist. No I don’t believe in God, no not at all, but yes I do plan to get married in a church, it’s traditional, isn’t it?” Yes perhaps it is, it’s also somewhat hypocritical, as is the flesh-eating veggie! Please don’t misunderstand; I am not any kind of animal rights activist, or indeed a vegetarian (meat is far, far too tasty for that kind of rash decision), I just cannot stand hypocrites or people who falsely attribute a label to themselves. Equally, if you are a bona fide veggie, please don’t tell me it’s for “animal welfare reasons” as you tuck smugly into your caged-hen spawned omelette, all the while looking down on me and wearing your favourite leather jacket. If you’re going to stop eating something, please be honest about the reasons behind your decision: if you don’t like the taste of certain meat, just say so! You jumping on the ethical bandwagon is offensive to those vegetarians who actually make CONSISTENT lifestyle choices on moral grounds. As for me, well i just find you irritating. Before moving on from the antagonistic topic of vegetarianism, let me touch on those ‘vegetarians’ who eat fish…I will grudgingly allow you to describe yourselves as pescetarians (because, let’s face it, that is the actual meaning of the actual word), although I always find the term a little misleading… If a vegetarian survives on solely vegetable matter, then surely it stands to reason that a pescetarian ONLY eats fish produce? A word I much prefer is VEGEQUARIAN; it’s almost worth becoming one just so that I can drop this pleasing word casually into conversation at every given opportunity! As a disclaimer, I would like to point out that I am not for one minute stating that all vegetarians are, by definition, fussy eaters; many vegetarians actually eat a far more varied diet than a lot of fussy meat-eaters, in my experience.
Throughout my childhood, my parents banned us from eating different foods for various reasons and for varying lengths of time. For a while we weren’t allowed bananas as the ones stocked locally were sourced in South Africa. The memories are a little hazy but I’m certain that my sister and I only dared to complain once about the lack of bananas gracing the fruitbowl; one lengthy lecture in Aparteid politics proving to be quite ample in disuading us from grumbling again. Then for a time, my dad insisted we only drink powdered milk, his reasoning being that the locally-available milk came from cows that may have been exposed to nuclear fallout from Chernobyl. My mum (who reads scientific literature just for fun) won the battle of the paranoid parents when she announced that we would no longer be eating beef, as research was being undertaken that suggested humans could contract a form of mad cow disease. This outright household-wide ban on the stuff lasted throughout much of the 80s and I actually tasted steak for the first time when I was 21 (and have been making up for lost time ever since). My point is that as unusual as these reasons are, they did follow a certain logic, and in my opinion, are far less ridiculous than some of the reasons the Fussy Eaters use for avoiding a certain foodstuff.
It’s too cute to eat. Often used as an excuse for not even trying delicious foodstuffs such as rabbit or venison. “Aww I could eat ickle Bambi, or a cute fluffy little rabbit.” Hmmm, but you will happily eat a cutesie wootsie little piglet or a fluffy wuffy little lamb, won’t you?
I’m intolerant. Try intolerable. I’m not suggesting that nobody has a food intolerance, but there does seem to have been a miraculous increase in the number of sufferers in recent years and people who are inconsistent in their intolerances are just plain annoying.
I just know i wouldn’t like it. How exactly do you know if you’ve never tried it?
I don’t like foreign food. Except for pizza, oh and Chinese takeaway, and I quite like a curry of a Saturday night.
I can’t eat that, I’m on a diet. Seriously, life is too short; eat what you want but in moderation!
Fresh food is too expensive. No, no it is not. It has been proven time and time again that it is possible to make healthy, tasty meals for less than the cost of a frozen ready-meal.
I feel that I am exceedingly lucky in the fact that I live in a time and place where there is an abundance of fantastic food waiting to be sampled. I’m also lucky in the fact that the vast majority of my friends are not at all fussy when it comes to devouring all kinds of tasty delights, or perhaps I subconsciously cull fussy-eaters (from my circle of friends, not literally, just in case that sounded really bad). Either way, it makes meals out, and cooking at home, a far more enjoyable experience. Basically, all you fussy eaters need to snap out of it and come round to my way of thinking pronto! I’m sick of chopping up the celery into teeny tiny pieces so you don’t know it’s in there…