The vampire's been mining my veins again, so I wasn't surprised yesterday when I was dizzy, tired, and thirsty for blood. Growing desperate, I lifted my muzzle, howled at the stars, and set off on the hunt. I feel a wee bit sinful hunting in this city of vegans, but I'm very conscious and principled about my bloodthirsty, fleshcraving, bonecrunching carnivorous habits.
After several hours with my nose in the wind, I tracked and felled some grassfed hamburger. At home with my kill, I sprinkled the meat liberally with Celtic sea salt and pepper, pressed it into large, thin patties (they tighten up plenty), and threw them down on a hot #9 Wagner till browned on one side. I flipped them, topped them with sharp cheddar cheese, and let them brown on the other side in only as much time as it took the cheese to melt -- so as to get as many of those magic caramelized sugars on the surface of the burger before the juices cooked out. Because it's all about the juices, anyway.
My meat-eating boils down to having an omnivorous animal body. Back in my idyllic childhood, I ate a lot of venison, steers from our pasture, chickens I helped butcher, and the occasional stray snapping turtle. Meat-eating should be just that: personal, respectful, and nourishing. I was vegetarian for a couple of years in college, and it really took a toll on my health. I wasn't even a coke-and-french fries vegetarian -- I was the real quinoa deal, balancing my complementary proteins and eating the wholest of whole foods. But that's when the vampire started coming round, sucking up my energy and joy and ability to think.
As I composed this post, Badmas dragged up a little mouse from the basement. I think it's her first. She was so proud of herself, so excited by the chase, that she hadn't yet killed it all the way -- so I snapped its neck with my heel. I still feel guilty; I've always been fond of mice (even when they colonized my garret room and ate all my sweaters and pooped on the tatters). I killed the mouse for the least selfish of reasons, but that doesn't mean I don't ache for it. That's what I mean when I say meat-eating should be personal. I injure lots of lives in complete ignorance -- so much of my food and fuel is stained with blood from far away -- but the more I feel the damage I've done, the less damage I will do. And I will not damage myself.