Vegan's Chronicles + [vegan politics]

Vent

I'm frustrated.

Today I was reminded once again how veg*ans are always handed the short end of the stick in this world dominated by meat-eaters. This Friday, my department is having a company-sponsored dinner. In the past, they picked places that at least had a couple vegetarian options (intentionally or not). However, this time, they chose a restaurant that primarily serves BBQ meat. Let me tell you something about Korean BBQ restaurants: Not only do they have very few, if any, vegetarian dishes, the restaurant is set up so that the customer cooks their own meat, on a bbq grill/pan in front of them, turning over the chunks of carcasses, and cutting them up into bitesize pieces with a pair of scissors. So as a vegan, I would have to sit there and watch people gorging on animal flesh, all while being fogged-out by the smoke and smell of burning flesh.

In the 2 years that I have been working at this company, I have never missed a single company dinner/outing. This Friday will be my first nonattendance. I simply cannot, in good conscience, support this kind of restaurant. I'm disappointed that the company chose a place that I find politically offensive. I even talked to management about the reasons for my decision, and I asked that next time, they choose a more inclusive restaurant. And what I found particularly interesting was that they said that they asked people for suggestions and requests, and that "most people" wanted a 'Gogi' (meat) restaurant. Well, how come neither myself nor Chris, my fellow veg*an, were ever asked for our opinions? Were we just conveniently left out of the conversation?? I know management probably had good intentions and was trying their best to accommodate the majority's tastes. I also realize that the two veg*ans in this department would not have much power in the decision making process, but it would have been nice to at least be asked.

I'm actually kinda sad that I won't be attending, because I haven't hung out with my coworkers as a group in a while. I'm also annoyed because I realize this is one of those sticky situations that can make the veg*an lifestyle look difficult and boring, as if we don't get to have fun because we're too concerned about saying 'no' to everything. That's really the last impression I want to give, because my life is really abundant in so many ways. If I wanted, I could just go, close my eyes, and not eat anything, but I think the cons outweigh the pros in this case. Plus, I'm taking a stand by boycotting this restaurant. Hopefully all my protests will make management more aware and thoughtful next time. I mean, don't the veg*ans also deserve dinner and drinks on the company's dime?

Thanks for letting me vent.