I am a vegetarian. So, no, I do not eat fish, I do not eat chicken, I do not even occasionally eat red meat.
(I may however make an exception and bite someone’s head off if I am asked the red meat question one more time.)
For the record, the dictionary defines a vegetarian as a person who refrains from eating any meat, fish, or fowl.
Common sense defines it as such as well.
People often ask me, “If you’re a vegetarian, why don’t you eat fish?”
To which I feel like responding, “If you’re able to speak English, why don’t you understand it?”
I suppose however, that I shouldn’t be upset with everyone who thinks that vegetarianism includes fish and poultry (and moo-meat from time to time). Part of the problem stems from the two-faced-face-eaters. Self-righteous, faux-vegetarians, who eat fish and chicken; yet, still claim to be veg.
If it has - or had - a face, a true vegetarian won’t eat it.
Eggs and dairy? They never had faces, and are just droppings and juices so to speak. These by-products are like the rent the face-filled animals pay, in hopes that they’ll extend their exciting lives.
Now, some vegetarians may get a little snooty, and add prefixes to the title.
A lacto-ova-vegetarian almost seems like a title that would have originated in the corporate world. It is just the extra fancy way to say, vegetarian, someone who eats dairy products, eggs, and follows a plant-based diet.
Then there are the less pretentious, but very specific, lacto-vegetarians, and ova-vegetarians, who are one animal by-product away from being vegan.
Vegans will not eat any animal or animal by-products.
So, yes, some prefixes work. Just don’t start prefixing “vegetarian” to death, because then you’ll merely have another dead carcass that I will refuse to eat.
I have heard people call themselves lacto-ova-pesca-pollo-vegetarians, which is just as convoluted as me saying I am five-foot-nine-minus-six-inches-plus-three-inches-minus-seven-inches-plus-one-inch. Simply say you eat everything but red meat, and I’ll say I’m five-feet-tall (and maybe add in an extra half an inch to make it 5' ½" for good measure).
And to those who define themselves as flexitarians or semi-vegetarians – that is like saying you are Jewish, but practise Catholicism from time to time. I don’t understand why some people feel the need to somehow label themselves as vegetarians. We are not cooler or smarter or even more Arian than anybody. We are just people who pay way too much money for soy beverages, typically get less choices in restaurants, and still pay full price for the meal when we ask to omit its most expensive item - the chicken.
Nonetheless, I am happy with my plant-based lifestyle. It was my choice and has been all I have known for over half my life. I eat a great variety of foods - more than when I ate meat. And yes, I get my protein (so please stop asking if I do). Most important, through my diet and lifestyle, I have fended off serious health problems, which doctors thought would be nearly impossible.
Look, I don’t care what you are. Whether you are a vegan, a vegetarian, a meatatarian (100 per cent carnivore), a classic omnivore (And why do most people think they're carnivores when they're omnivores?), or even a McAtarian – that is between you and your colon. Do what makes you happy.
I will never impose my dietary ideology upon anybody. That said, I will impose my vocabulary.
Mmm, find out how chicken nuggets are made.
For instance, as I’ve mentioned previously, the plural for penis should not be penises; rather, it should be peni [peen’eye].
Although, peni is my concoction, and I can understand your unwillingness to accept it, vegetarian is in the dictionary.
So eat that!