Category Archives: Zen

A shawl per ball of yarn

I’ve decided to use only vegan yarn from now on and that has meant mostly cotton, linen and bamboo. However, there have been many sales on at various yarn outlets and I saw some nice-looking acrylic yarn on offer at £1.89 so I thought, why not. I bought it, it looks acrylic and I can’t say I love it much at all. But there’s lots of it so I’m committing myself to getting one shawl pattern (not necessarily a usable shawl) out of each one.

I’m committing in writing because otherwise I keep suffering through various iterations of ‘switch to a nicer yarn’, ‘bind off and use it for a swatch’, ‘stop knitting because you’ll never knit the whole thing again with lovely yarn that you can use for a pattern’. But I’m enjoying my knitting and I am getting a pattern out of the first ball already. With a commitment I can tell all those voices to go away.

The colours look like a combination of a dish cloth and a granny dressing gown.

A perfect day for vegan fish

Picture it, Colchester 2004.

My then-boyfriend Graeme and I were visiting a pet store with friends who wanted to buy an aquarium, possibly even a clown fish after just having seen Finding Nemo.

There were tanks of tropical fish. That is to say, there were little creatures of dark crimson and royal blue who flickered and swam and propelled themselves with voluntary movements of their muscles and fins. They filtered water through their gills as they swam, extracting oxygen from the water. Miracles of creation no bigger than a 50p coin, a colourful reflection of the miracle of nature.

As I watched them slightly mesmerised, a voice piped up with “I wonder how that tastes?” about a particular dark blue fish. I was horrified. “Whoa there!” horrible carniverous voice. Here I am reflecting on the miracle of creation and you pipe up with your petty, low-life stomach urges? How could I pretend to admire and love the other beings on earth when my basest desire was to gobble them up with sliced and fried fish and a bit of lemon?

That wasn’t the moment I decided to be vegetarian but it was one of the many moments scattered around my life that made me decide to stop eating other animals.

My following and practise of Buddhism has also convinced me to have my actions in harmony with my thoughts and feelings. So here it goes.

2014 is my year of not eating other creatures. Reviews and explorations of food on this blog will not contain meat products.

So far it has been a bit of a challenge and instead of it being a problem, it reminded me that I like puzzles and thinking about things and analysing.

There will be more to follow but I wanted to publish this while I had the chance.