That Tofu Crap
Both of my boys are conflicted on the subject of tofu. While routinely denouncing "that tofu crap," calling instead for meat, they wolf down tofu with unconcern for logical consistency whenever I cook it. What they don't like, apparently, is the idea of tofu.
Food is a very political subject. Food habits are divided on lines of race, sex, class, and age. While statistics on vegetarianism and veganism are spotty and untrustworthy, it seems that the v's are more likely to be female, more likely to be youngish, and more likely to be from either coast than from the south or midwest. As income and education rises, so does the likelihood of v'ism.
One Tuesday when Amir was perhaps eight years old, he announced that he was going to be a vegetarian on Tuesdays. He eschewed meat that day, and again a week later. Soon he decided to be a vegetarian full-time. He was pretty consistent, turning down pepperoni pizza at birthday parties and asking bemused McDonald's clerks for the breakdown of the frying oils. When he hit puberty, he reverted to carnivorism, angrily accusing his animal-rights-activist sister of having imbued him with guilt.
I love food--eating it, cooking it, reading and talking about it. I find disturbing the current climate of fear in this country surrounding what we eat. Food isn't merely sustenance, but the source of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes, carrier of deadly viruses and allergens.
I'm a vegetarian, not for health reasons, but because I don't want to kill anything, and having someone else kill things for me is just passing the buck, imho. But I don't think I have a negative attitude about food. There are so many dishes out there, I will never get to try them all. I don't think about the ones I don't choose to eat, but, rather, happily anticipate the rest. Raspberries and cream, stuffed baby artichokes, asparagus with béarnaise sauce, sundried tomato soup. And, of course, all that tofu crap.