Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Huntin’, Fishin’, Gatherin’.

I speak from a vantage point of many years of vegetarianism.

I returned to carnivorism, with emphasis on mainly fish, nearly always organic meat, several years back.

I have blood type “O” positive, which apparently means that we don’t do well on a vegetarian diet. I agree from personal experience. My body simply wasn’t getting enough protein.

For a city woman living in an outport in Newfoundland this means actually seeing
your protein before you actually eat it. This takes some getting used to. Like last week, this rabbit was snared on my Back Seven And A Half. I took this shot, with much queasiness, before the rabbit was ‘dressed’. (Shouldn’t that term be ‘undressed’?)

The extraordinary part of this is that one of my first distinct memories is at the age of about four, going with my grandfather to check on his rabbit snares in the early morning dew and watching him tie their legs to a long stick to throw over his shoulder before we headed back down the meadow with our supper.

My life has come around in a complete circle.


  1. That's better than eating a rabbit reared by the biological industry, kept in a little cage until it was time for him to be slaughtered. I much prefer this way, WWW. Somehow it seems more natural. Next, you'll have to dress the rabbit yourself.

  2. Funny, I'm O Rhesus Positive but I've never heard anything about that being incompatible with vegetarianism.

    I certainly wouldn't fancy seeing my dinner being killed and stripped in front of me. Must take some getting used to as you say.

  3. What The Green Stone Woman said. With knobs on!

  4. Oldtimers here told me that during the Great Depression many a rabbit augmented by the odd deer shot when the game warden looked the other way kept some families from starvation.

  5. In the UK a headmistress of a junior school has been hounded out of her job by an internet campaign organsied by animal rights activists.

    Her crime was to set up a "farm" so that the children could see how animals are born and grow, essentially to teach them where their food comes from. The school is in a rural area so there are farms all around them. it is a fact of life.

    This was not a "petting" farm and the animals were not given names. However when the decision was taken by the school's council that one of the sheep should be slaughtered and the meat sold so they could raise money to buy some piglets, all hell let loose.

    Some parents objected and while they are entitled to their views, other parents were quite happy with what the school was doing. The story made the local, then the national media. Unfortunately what this did was attract the attention to those who object to anyone who "kills" animals for food. A Facebook campaign was set up and it got completely out of hand resulting in death threats to the headmistress and her family. The pressure got too much and this week she left the school.

    The worst aspect of this story was that most of the objections came not from the parents but from complete outsiders, most not even in the UK. Rather than allowing the school authorities to resolve any issues it became a witch hunt and now "they" have their scalp.

    I find this sort of thing very sad and the only losers in this are the children and how do you explain the cruelty of the people who did this to the headmistress they were fond of. Killing animals in some circumstances is certainly cruel but this is just too barbaric when it's human on human. Mental abuse can be just as injurious as physical and in some places on the internet this has become very pernicious.

  6. My belief is that lots of people don't enough protein. I was never a vegetarian but gave up red meat many years ago. I went back to it -- just grass-fed meat -- last year.

  7. I'm not a card-carrying vegetarian, but I simply don't like meat. I couldn't eat something I'd seen killed, or the wee rabbit in your photo, WWW. Can't face a piece of steak under any circumstances. I'll eat meat if it's heavily disguised, minced, or in a sauce, or if I'm absolutely forced to eat it for courtesy's sake,(or from sheer hunger, I guess.)

    I'm blood-type A Positive - somewhere, ages ago, I recall reading that this blood type stems from early grain eating tribes - so maybe that's my problem.

  8. @GSW:
    Absolutely. I find this total disconnect from our food sources disconcerting to say the least. I admit to queasiness when I see my predressed meat but the agribusinessed antibiotic and hormone laced so-called 'meat' is so very much worse.
    Same as me and you are not feeling the downside of lack of protein at all? You probably don't 'do' as many grains as I did and manage your protein a lot better.
    And we of course have the moose and caribou as well in NL
    Not to mention the excellent quality of the protein itself!
    Yes, I read that and couldn't believe it, we are living in an insane world of chicken fingers (which have nothing to do with actual chickens aocording to my granddaughter with fingers in her ears to shut me out).
    Yes, you would be better off on legumes and grains apparently according to that study. Interesting you have an aversion!
    I really could live on just fish but the odd foray into healthy organic red meat is good.

  9. Reminds me of some hippies I knew way back when in the interior of BC, they bought a piglet with the intention of raising it up to eat. Well, they named it Blue and when winter came they brought Blue into their home to keep warm! (they didn't have a barn) By springtime there was no way they could butcher Blue, but she had grown into a humongous sow so they couldn't keep her in their house anymore either. They built her a piggery and had her bred, and raised up her piglets without naming them. The piglets were not so lucky as their Mom.

  10. Oh that is such a good story Annie, how on earth can one kill and eat a friend?
    I'm glad I didn't know Herr Rabbit.

  11. Funny, one of my earliest memories is watching my grandmother (in Spain) slaughter and "undress" one of her (domestic) rabbits.

    I'm a devotee of Laurie's blog, and that is how I found yours. I'm so glad.

  12. This is a very good post!! I think the world would be a much better place if people knew where their food came from and had greater involvement in the process. That's a very sad story about the UK headmistress being hounded out of her job. CHildren should learn how food gets on their tables.

    I am so glad we now have our own hens for eggs, and although I don't eat a lot of meat, when I do I buy organic, preferably from local farmers. I have respect for people who hunt their own meat in a ethical way. To me that seems much smarter than buying, say, factory-farmed pork, or eggs from battery hens. If you're going to eat meat, you can at least ensure the animals had a decent life beforehand. And if you say it's too expensive to buy organic/free-range/grass-fed, I say, eat less meat. Off my soapbox!

    Our hens are never going into the stewpot. The local farmers no doubt think we're nuts, but the hens are quite charming and have become pets. :) I feel guilty when I have chicken for dinner, then go out to the coop to visit the girls.


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