Friday, January 13, 2012

Fortuitous Fridays: Vegetarians, Polar Bears and Paris

Right, so I guess someone has to say it. Vegetarians: in addition to annoying everyone around you with your morally superior attitude to, well, everything, you're evolving yourself into extinction. Just look at the Polar Bear. Don't see the connection? Okay, lets back up as my brain has, perhaps, jumped the rails a bit here.

Several years ago I had the good fortune to go to Paris with a friend who had a family flat very near the Champs-Élysées. It was, in fact, just behind the American Embassy. Well, not directly behind, of course, as the poxy Americans are always keen on keeping their embassies secure and such, but very close.

The A is the Embassy, and the circle is the flat... yes, I do hope you're jealous 'cause it was fab.

It's just up and on the left.
We had been here a couple times, and with the flights from Ireland costing $50.00 it was a great place to meet friends and have a good time. As the accommodation was paid for, the flights cheap, and the wine and food half of what it cost in Ireland it was a situation! On one of these get-togethers we had with us that most dreaded of dinner partners...... the vegetarian. In Paris.....where they think that eating an animal's intestine is perfectly reasonable. It's basically the land of cheese and meat (and wine) so, really, a vegetarian is pretty much shit-out-of-luck.

I remember one night we were tromping around, hungry as all hell, looking for a restaurant that had vegetarian options. We reached one, and our friend looked at the menu and said: "Ahh, pasta, you know, I don't really feel like pasta, I had that yesterday."

Really Sherlock? Had pasta yesterday? Of course you did, for feck sake, you're a vegetarian! There isn't a lot of shit you can eat, and especially not in Paris (even fish was forbidden to him apparently). I wanted to beat him to death with one of the giant (delicious looking) salamis I could see hanging in a nearby shop. But I didn't, of course- it was just the irrational thoughts of a very hungry man tired of walking.

Come good does that look? Yummy.

I was thinking of that episode the other day while I was enjoying the +8 Celcius day we had which broke a record set in 1920 for the warmest day in our city. Last year I was posting pictures of the temperature at -56 Celcius (with wind chill) and this year it's so warm we hardly have any snow left. I've never (in 30 years) seen anything like this. It really does prove that the earth is getting warmer, despite a large percentage of my American neighbors thinking otherwise. I remember my dad saying (in between puffs of his cigarette) that if destroying the ozone layer would make it warmer here in Saskatchewan then he was going to go out and buy a load of aerosol cans and start spraying. NASA has confirmed that we'll be seeing big changes where I live.

The warmer temperatures, of course, are melting the ice-caps, increasing the sea-level, and destroying the habitats of many of the animals who have adapted to cold climates. Now I love animals (even Manatees) but a part of me can't help but think that if some animals were just a little brighter they wouldn't be in trouble. Look at the Polar Bear. A lovely looking creature, I admit, and the recent BBC special Frozen Planet narrated by the wonderful David Attenborough (that's Sir David to us) provided us with a truly breathtaking and intimate look at these mighty creatures. It made me feel really, really bad that they're all going to be dead very, very soon.

Taken From The BBC website linked above.
But then, let's face it- it's their own fault. Well, except for the whole humans destroying their habitat by increasing the temperature of an entire planet thing of course. Look at Grizzly Bears- thought to be part of the same group of bears that the Polar evolved from- they seem to have fared a bit better..... oh wait, bad example I guess, since they too are endangered. Hmmmm.....My point is, they haven't specialized nearly to the extent of Polar Bears and in the end, that may save them.

Even he would be okay in Paris.
In the end, I guess, the animals who are not specialized to the point of ridiculousness are going to fare better during sudden changes to their environment or habitat. Thus, I submit to you, that the vegetarian is specializing him, or her, self into a corner and may one day find themselves on a program narrated by Sir David Attenborough with sad music playing in the background:

We see here the elusive and rare North American Vegetarian desperately searching for edible algae on the underside of these rocks. Once plentiful, and prosperous here in North America, a changing climate saw all the vegetation die off. In it's place a new species of cow evolved which was able to sustain itself soley on water which was good news for those that liked their steaks rare. Not so, sadly, for the vegetarian.

The endangered, babmoo-eating Panda. Do I really have to say anything else?

Happy Friday Everyone!

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