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My dietary requirements - the final chapter!

I’m in a weird place.  Before I explain, let me back up a bit. On Wednesday morning, I jumped on the
Eclectically Curious
My dietary requirements - the final chapter!
By Clay Lowe • Issue #31 • View online
I’m in a weird place. 
Before I explain, let me back up a bit. On Wednesday morning, I jumped on the red-eye train to London.
I arrived there just in time for rush hour on the Underground. I’d forgotten how mad the trains can be at that time of the day - people packed into the carriages like sardines. I know that sounds cliched, but it’s the only real way to describe the experience of being crammed in a carriage with not even enough room to raise your arms to read the book you brought along to read on the 47 minute journey from Marylebone to the Excel centre which is where I was headed to attend a workplace learning conference, Europe’s largest according to the massive billboard outside of the place.
I come to these things with no real expectations other than just wandering around on the off chance I might stumble upon a new idea i can use in my own training practice. I also get to meet interesting people in my industry, which is a bonus. Oh and the freebies are pretty cool.
It’s a lot to absorb in one go. There are over 200 exhibitors and about 150 seminars you can attend. I have to say though, by late afternoon I was spent. Done. Brain fried. I headed over to the nearest Costa for a coffee and some decompression. At this point, I was really looking forward to dinner with two of my friends I don’t get to see in person that often, so it’s always an epic night when we do get together.
An aside: I ran into an old colleague at Costa. I was walking in, he was walking out (sounds like a Prince song). A massive case of serendipity. I’d been trying to get ahold of this guy (Sean is his name) for about two weeks. I hadn’t spoken to him in like 15 years. I was in the midst of sourcing a company to a deliver a new manager’s skills course, when I came across Sean and his company. Long story short - I had no contact with him for 15 years and then suddenly I run into him at the Excel Center amongst 8, 500 other people.
The day was good.
But unbeknownst to me, the night was about take a downward spiral to angry-ville, which I haven’t really fully recovered from yet!. 
After the expo, we drove to our AirBnB for a quick freshening up before hoping in an Uber to take us to The Spread Eagle, which according to me friend was a really cool restaurant. Me, being a food loving guy, was really excited.
And then the menu came.
Mexican! Nice. I quickly scanned the menu looking for the beef enchiladas or beef burritos, or even tacos. I couldn’t find any beef on the menu. I had one of those Wendys moments.
OK. No beef. No big deal. I’ll go for the chicken. The menu said chicken. Or at least I thought it said chicken. There was the Mexican Fried Chick ’n wings and the Mexican Fried Chickend burger
I was a bit confused, and then I saw it.
Written along the side of the menu, London’s first 100% Vegan pub.
My friends were trying to trick me into eating a vegan meal. When I refused to order anything, they tried to coerce me with their twisted vegan logic that only has one conclusion - their conclusion. Well, being the freedom loving, non-conformist that I am, I had only one response. If I didn’t hate vegans before, I really f ing hate them now!
I suddenly found myself behind enemy lines surrounded by a restaurant full of dirty rotten vegans. I had to fight the urge to stand up and say f-k you all.
I’m generally a live and let live kind of guy, but even I have my limits and my two knuckled headed friends pushed me over that limit. I’ve never felt compelled to be an activist of any kind, but now I have half a mind to go pubic and become an anti-vegan and fight this cause head on. But I won’t. It’s not worth my time or effort. It’s not my business what other people eat.
Listen - being a vegan is choice. If you’re a vegan, you’ve made your choice and I’m happy for you. Now extend me the same courtesy and respect my choice. As Immortal Technique said: “I’ll be damned if I let somebody else push their agenda on me.” So in case my message isn’t clear, I’ll let Ice-T sum it for me.
So back to the beginning. I’m in a weird mental space right now still steaming from the set-up. I’m sure it’ll blow over soon, but fair warning to my friends and family who are vegans, don’t bother me with this stuff.
I. Don’t. Care. You do your thing, let me do mine.
Peace and Love to you,
Clay

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Clay Lowe

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