When you think of people who won’t shut up about something, one of the first types of people who come to mind are vegans. It brings to mind mental images of malnourished white people roaming around farmers markets while loudly screaming about animal rights at anyone in shrieking range.
Honestly though…the vegans I know don’t really fit the stereotype. I mean, they love farmers markets, but a lot of them are white so what do you expect? Even a friend of mine who legally changed her name to reflect her vegan values doesn’t really talk about being vegan much in person. I know that all of my evidence here is circumstantial and just reflective of the specific people I know, but I honestly haven’t encountered an aggressively vocal vegan…
…with one exception.
My mother started to phase meat out of her diet when I was around ten. Totally fine, your diet is nobody’s business except yours and your doctor’s. When we went out to restaurants though, she would often interrupt the server to tell them that she’s a vegetarian and ask what on the menu she could eat. Over the years, that evolved into interrupting the server as they introduced themselves and tried to take a drink order to announce, “I don’t eat animals; is there anything I can eat?” This immediately let the server know two things:
- My mother thought she was a superior human and deserved praise.
- She was about to be a major fucking problem for the server.
In retrospect, this interaction wasn’t really about being vegan as it was about being a dick to servers. My mother was absolutely the kind of person that servers talked shit about in the kitchen. One time, my husband, Jon, and I were out to dinner with her and our server accidentally spilled a small splash of Jon’s beer due to a wobbly table. No big deal, we wiped up the table, Jon enjoyed his beer, and we all moved on–well, almost all of us moved on. Each time the waiter returned, my mother continued to make passive aggressive comments about spilling things and how “sticky” the table was (it wasn’t). Needless to say, Jon “forgot” something at the table as we were leaving and we apologized to the server with some extra cash.
Moral of the story? Eat whatever you want and remember that your servers are people just trying their best to do their job so they can pay rent because capitalism sucks.