A re-post from 2007.
The following is one of my all-time favorite quotes ('cept the hog bit). In mentioning it to a friend yesterday, I had intended to just post it on this blog without much comment:
"A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." ---Lazarus Long in "Time Enough For Love," by Robert Heinlein.
However, upon reflection, I thought maybe I could write a quick "vegan" version. Normally I'd wait a day or more to review and re-edit, but we're having an extended harvest due to warm weather and I've too much else "on my plate" (actually, the 50lbs. of tomatoes are in boxes on the floor). So, here it is as it is for now:
"A vegan should be able to: press a block of tofu, roast vegetables, sprout beans, grains, and seeds, grow vegetables and herbs from seed, harvest lettuce or greens, water or pressure can produce, bake homemade bread, create a stir-fry from scratch in a friend's kitchen, boil three kinds of grains successfully without a recipe, make seitan, saute stuff without using oil, use rice or soy milk to make a thickened sauce, own a crockpot, blend a good pesto, eat a variety of colors every day, wash salad greens, mix an ad-hoc low-fat salad dressing, cook more than two kinds beans and grain dishes, know three types of "egg replacers" for recipes, use nutritional yeast, list plant sources of Omega 3 and calcium, suggest alternatives to ingredients on a restaurant's menu, answer the question "why are you vegan?" or correct the protein myths in 30 seconds or less, identify trans-fats and "hidden" dairy products on labels, comprehend what "calores from fat" means and why that's important, cite some environmental statistics regarding factory farming and modern food production when asked in line at the supermarket, remember at least three websites to recommend for aspiring vegans or vegetarians, vocalize the problems with dairy and cheese if asked to, have listened to or seen at least one talk by Howard Lyman, summarize Dr. Cauldwell Esselstyn's research and McDougall's Diet recommendations, have read a NotMilk column by Robert Cohen, have attended a Veg'n'-related Conference, design a flyer, write a convincing "letter to the editor," laugh often and for the right reasons, stop and smell some flowers, listen gracefully, be non-judgemental as much as possible, encourage all healthy eating habits, never stop learning, do volunteer work for a worthy cause, help build relationships in the veg'n community where you live, make love often, be polite to your carnivorous friends and family members, place a small footprint in the environment, then ultimately die peacefully with the knowledge that you made a difference..." --- Mark Sutton
Feel free to pass it around, but please include @2007 by Mark Sutton, and the address of this blog with the quote. Thanks!