Facing Food

Last night I heard the distant rumblings of a cheese pizza chanting my name, making my stomach grumble and taste buds salivate. Like a sick fiend, the craving knocked me around and made everything else fade to black.

Out of the blue and in stark contrast to my recent state of conscious eating, the idea of a comforting cheese pizza became the only thing that mattered. I wanted something warm, delicious, and sinful and I wanted it right away.

Guilty as though someone was watching, I shut the front door, dialed my dealer and waited for an answer. Full-out, Intervention style (“gimme me one last hit before you send me away, goddammit, Candy Finnigan”), I had hit rock bottom!

I wanted it that bad.

Nothing could shake the image of warm cheese entering my mouth or the thought of crunchy, doughy crust swimming around my tongue. And with the recent cold, rainy weather, nothing feels like home like a cardboard box and greasy leftovers.

As I waited for someone to pick up the delivery line, I found myself between two choices: Make another healthy meal or finish this quick transaction and enjoy cheap gratification.

I hung up the phone. I just couldn’t do it. Seriously, this was the most important decision of my day, so I decided to take a walk. To weigh the pros and cons, I thought.

See, at the beginning of 2010, prompted by some family members and my general interest in becoming more green, I decided to overhaul my eating habits. To that end, I began reading Jonathan Safran Foer’s book Eating Animals, an examination about the food industry, specifically Factory Farming and its global impact on the environment. Foer’s book explains and presents reasons why we should examine our relationship with fish, chicken, cows, diary and most all animal by-products.

It’s a staggering, sobering, life changing account of how our food makes it from the “farm” to the grocery story. I won’t go into details (read it for yourself), but because of this book, I’m now considering a gradual march toward veganism. (I certainly won’t be the first person he converted.)

Now you understand my dilemma last night: the guilt, the pressure, the anxiety, the expectation. No more turning a blind eye to where the food comes from. It just doesn’t work that way with me.

In the end, I didn’t cave (totally boring, right!?!) and when I returned home, with my better judgment, I reached for a bag of dark, leafy greens and cooked them with a sense of peace and happiness on my heart and stove.

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8 thoughts on “Facing Food

  1. RYAN, A BIG WOOT ,WOOT FOR YOU. I WOULD HAVE EATEN THE PIZZA.I JUST HOPE YOU CAN MAKE IT A LIFESTYLE. I’VE TRIED MANY, MANY TIMES OVER THE YEAR ONLY TO FALL IN DEFEAT. EATING HEALTHY IS THE RIGHT WAY TO GO BUT I LEFT MY WILL POWER SOMEWHERE AND I CAN’T FIND IT. LOL

    GRANNY

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  2. Oh Ray……
    If only I had enough willpower as you do. If I did I am pretty sure I wouldn’t be a alcoholic! When I gave up eating meat(about 10yrs ago) It wasn’t hard. I just could no longer think of those poor eyes looking back at me. They(in my mind) would be begging me not to hurt them.
    I have a phobia of killing things. I know I’m weird! Now mind you I still cook meat for my family. I chose the meat free life, they didn’t.

    The other day I was going to show my daughter(14yr) the video “Meet Your Meat” but I chose not to. She’ll make her choice soon enough! Thats a pretty cut and dry video, pun intended!

    Freschetta Natural Rise 4 cheese pizza….I ADORE! It is freaking awesome!

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  3. I just have to say my mouth was watering at your description of the ever yummy cheese pizza at the beginning. I am not strong. I cave in almost every time…sigh.

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  4. I’ve been a vegetarian for 8 years. After seeing food inc. and reading The Omnivores Dilemna I am moving ever so slowly toward veganism myself. I’ve made a stop along the way in switching most of my dairy to organic. I love cheese and yogurt. This one is going to be toughy. In the meantime, I’ve stopped purchasing all of the veggie meats in the store and started making my own at home. Vegan corned beef, turkey, chicken, sausage and pot roast. I’m a vegan butcher and I’m having a ball! Who would have thought? I’ve never liked cooking.

    And I’ve lost 75 pounds since July.

    I heard about Eating Animals a while back, thanks for the gentle reminder. I’ll be sure to get it.

    Ryan, way to go on resisting that pizza.

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  5. Good job Ry. 🙂 I told you that if you read that book it would change your life. For the better of course. We can lean on each other and cook up a mean vegan pizza whenever you get another pizza craving! Have you made those cinnamon rolls yet?

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  6. Thank you for sharing the battles of moving on to new ways of thinking and living (lifestyle). I so get the “simplify” you shared in an earlier blog and having come from an area in the middle of the United States that raises pork and beef (and having a husband work in that area of agriculture for over 20 years) I have always had issues with eating meat. I realize there is so much more than that to what you are saying, and I hope you will be comfortable to share more…I think many of us are traveling the same road and would enjoy a fellow traveler in this journey (especially one can express what many of us cannot.)
    I also would like to ask who has the blog “My Own Incredible Journey” I followed the link there and loved it so very much. Thank you also for sharing that.
    Thank you seems to be the theme of my comment…and I truly mean it my friend! Bless you on your journey.

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  7. You had me crackin up so hard towards the beginning. The way you described your feelings for that pizza. Hilarious. I really enjoy your style of writing.

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