“Largely Carnivorous”

I remember during a Friday Lunch a few years ago, a coworker asked about how I came to be such a picky eater, and didn’t my parents force me to eat foods? It’s true that my diet probably gives health-conscious people the fantods, although I don’t see why, really. My theory on eating is to eat what you want, don’t overeat, and take a multivitamin every day. It’s not like I don’t eat any fruits and vegetables. I just dislike most of them.

Anyway, the way I recounted the story was:

You know how at some point in your childhood, when you refused to eat your peas or carrots, your parents would force you to stay at the dining table until you finished your plate? Most kids would eventually relinquish after a while and eat the damn things. Well, I won that battle.

I don’t recall all the details, but I do remember that this was a rather protracted campaign. There were nights when I sat at the table for two hours before my mom would give up. Headstrong runs in the family.

It’s practically the job of little kids to make their parents’ lives difficult. I don’t think I was too badly behaved a child, but I’m sure cases like these made my parents doubt for a minute. There’s always that power struggle, and someone must bend in the end.

In retrospect, the independence gained from such an act was probably not as great as it seemed then. After all, if a person is the product of nature and nurture, then her desires will never stray too far from her parents’, who contribute on both accounts. They may be rebellious, but those kids are rebellious in exactly their parents’ ways.

Nowadays, I’m introduced as the guy who “only eats meat,” a categorization I abhor only because it is a categorization. It’s like introducing someone as black, or Jewish, or gay, or something. As though some single characteristic can largely define a person. I’m not so foolish to think that stereotyping doesn’t derive from a useful attribute; after all, the ability to group things together and tell things apart proffers us the positive definition of discriminate as well. But of course, when brought to the forefront, that which is easy to see overwhelms the rest.

I was going to segue into an exposition of who I am (besides totally lost), but I am tired now (tiredness being part of what I am). Perhaps another time, soon.