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Confessions of a Reformed Vegetarian

Maybe this post is going to be of no interest to anyone else, but I have to share it anyway.

Throughout my college years, I was a die-hard Blur fan (Damon Albarn of Gorillaz fame's other band) and I am no stranger to bassist Alex James' wacky wits. He's now living the country life in England and has recently published a story on why, after 17 years, he's "given vegetarianism the chop."

Chopping up my first lamb stayed vividly on my mind for a few days. The anatomy of a sheep is pretty similar to our own, really. I couldn't scratch my ribs without the image of that immaculate carcass springing to mind. I thought about it involuntarily as I lay in bed at night. But, boy, those chump chops were good.

I was a vegetarian for about 17 years. Now here I am, butchering and eating one of my own lambs.

How could a vegetarian of 17 years talk so effortlessly about slaughtering lambs? To find out,

Turns out he bought a farm, rented the land out to sheep farmers, had a problem with birds taking over and was forced to do something about it.

Killing rooks [crow like birds] is not nice at all. There are no neat boxes for exterminating them; shotguns are the only thing that work and it's a pretty medieval and messy business, which I don't enjoy.

But I felt I was acting for the greater good. It was a hard decision for a vegetarian to make, and the moment I made that decision was the moment I became a farmer.

So there you have it, 17 years of vegetarianism can be undone by a gang of wild birds.

James' entire essay is lengthy, but goes into a lot of detail about his own country house experiences, as well as UK agriculture and farming practices. Even if you don't know (or care) who Alex James is, it's still a pretty interesting read.

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