Did you try Veganuary? Or need a hilariously realistic portrayal into veganism before taking the plunge? Scarlett Cayford gives us an insight into a day in the life of a newborn vegan.
I come from a family who are good at the whole self-sacrifice thing. We never owned a dryer growing up, because my parents are dyed in-the-wool Greenies who thought of it as a waste of power (I also spent most of my childhood with knickers of various sizes draped off the back of all the chairs). My mother has been a vegetarian my whole life. One sister is a vegan. My father lives a relatively vegetarian lifestyle until the urges overcome him, and he barbecues a butterflied lamb whole before eating it in ravenous greasy chunks on the deck, alone.
I don’t deny myself anything, really, except that tenth glass of wine on a Saturday night, or the last row of chocolate from the family-sized bar I’ve already scoffed, because balance. So this January (Veganuary, if you will, which I won’t), I became a vegan.
To see if I could, to see if it was difficult, to see if it would make my family love me more. Here is what my new vegan life looks like:
5:30am: Wake up. Eat a Nakd bar (Cashew Cookie is the best flavour, even though Cookie is a very generous name to give to a product that is made ONLY of dates and cashews). Walk to the gym.
6:00am: PT session with a Brazilian named Juliana who has more abs than I’ve had hot meals laden with cheese. She makes me do squats. I can actually see the moment when the gas that has become a part of my life since chickpeas came to make up 40% of my in-goings reaches her nose. She stops making me do squats.
8:30am: Breakfast at my desk: vegan vanilla protein powder, plus falafel covered in hummus (which seems like a normal kind of light meal before I realised that it is made up of mushed chickpeas formed into balls, covered in chickpea paste).
10am: Hungry. Stave off hunger with coffee. Thank fuck that coffee and tea are vegan, also thank fuck that I have always imbibed both black. Milk can fuck off. I don’t miss you, milk. Talk to me about your cousin, yoghurt. How is she doing? Does she talk about me?
11am: Snack time: salt and vinegar peanuts OR salt and vinegar crisps. STORYTIME: my sister warned me that I might become LESS healthy as a vegan, since I might get exhausted and resort to eating potatoes and bread all the time, covered in salt, saturated in oil, not made of bits of animals bodies, but otherwise not exactly good. Getting very close to proving her absolutely correct, which is always annoying.
12:30pm: LUNCH. For some reason, everyone in my workplace gets free burritos. This is fine, because burritos are one of those unicorn foods that are nearly as delicious vegan as they are dairy-and-flesh-saturated, thanks to the magical powers of guacamole. Still, cannot help but sigh slightly as apron-clad man asks, “Sour cream and cheese?” No. No, nice apron-man with a big moustache. No.
3pm: SLUMP. Massive slump. Resort to eating Lotus biscuit spread out of the jar with a spoon. Respond to all inquiries with snarls. Is becoming a vegan turning me into an animal? Should Kafka write a book about me?
5pm: Office manager puts a bowl full of chocolate on the table. I read the label of every chocolate bar variant, sighing and glaring around the room, shaking my head. Veganism is not helping my popularity.
7pm: Book launch. You know what is vegan? Wine (if you talk to me about fish skins, I’ll bite you, and that will be the end of Veganuary for me). All supplied food is meat-and-dairy-smeared so I just drink more wine. WINE. Are all vegans drunks? A question for another day.
9pm: Excuse self from book launch, wobble over to Whole Foods, well-known sanctuary of vegans and people who are too good for Tesco, i.e. me, now. Buy: a huge pot of dolmades, guacamole with sriracha, an edamame and shitake burger, homemade tortilla chips, buffalo cauliflower, 2 cheese substitutes + vegan sour worms.
9:10pm: Spend tube ride wondering what buffalo cauliflower is.
9:30pm: Is spicy cauliflower. Just spanked £5 on spicy cauliflower. Nice, though, and not made of chickpeas.
9:45pm: Boyfriend tries to snag some guacamole. “GO EAT MEAT!” I yell. Fuck off my expensive vegan food, meat-eater. Possibly am not totally understanding the end goal of veganism for the planet.
10:30pm: Bed. Dream of cheese. Blue cheese, stuffed inside a camembert, wrapped in mozzarella. Why has no one made this before? Am going to make millions. But not until February 1st.
Come on guys – help me out here. Leave your own divine newborn vegan guidance in the comments below.
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