It’s My Birthday and So It Begins

This is Blog 1 in a 365 day series!

January 11, 2016

Its my birthday. 7:22pm on a Monday night and I am trying to figure out how to start a blog. . . A newly inspired blogger with writers block. What a joke.


My name is Erica and today I am 29.


I started this journey (todays journey, the 7:22pm on January 11th journey) googling the best way to introduce yourself in a blog. The suggestions are bland. “Who are you? What are you about? Why your blog?”. . . Why my blog? Being asked this question feels assumptive. Answering it feels narcissistic. And for this reason, I provide none. No answer, that is. What I can do, however, is explain my relationship with words. Bear with me.


Writing was once an instrument of melodramatic release in my life- a ravine with no end, just an infinite exploration of the mind and soul. No end was necessary because writing was my mechanism of choice, used to feed my teen angst and help me feel connected to the world’s emotions or, perhaps, it was just my emotions that needed connecting. I was, after all, as self-absorbed in my agony as any other stereotype of a 14 year old dressed in all black. Eventually, the general foreboding of my juvenility passed and I entered a world where the artistic brain was throttled into hibernation and a life of analytics took the reins. What are the psychosocial implications of physical versus emotional abuse in childhood? How does power and privilege color worldview? Discuss the social psychology of sexuality in regards to gender-based inequality. . . I could write about these things for days. Actually, I have written about these things for days. Did I mention that I’m a social worker? Well, I’m a social worker.


But now, now, I just want to blog about food. So, while an end remains unnecessary, depth may remain unnecessary, as well. Then, why the struggle? I have been toiling with the idea of even starting a blog for exactly 7 days (…though, in all honesty, a slightly less intense version of blog toiling has been happening for years, the thought just never advanced beyond fleet. . . so, 7 days it is). Anyway, now that I finally begin, I feel somewhat blank. Somewhat disoriented. Somewhat like I am rambling. Have I introduced myself, yet? My name is Erica and today I am 29.


Today I am 29. Today I am 29. Today I am 29.


* * * *


It’s now 9:31pm on January 11th. A lot has happened since my eventually-soon-to-be husband talked me into taking a break so that I may go at [this] with fresh eyes. And I do feel inclined to note that this phrase I like to use, my-eventually-soon-to-be, is not arrogance. Though it does have an air of arrogance. . . and assumption. . . Assumptive arrogance, if you will the best kind of arrogance. The kind of arrogance that lacks any reasonable acknowledgment of curve balls. Oh, does life like to throw curve balls. At any rate, this phrase represents fact should nothing unforeseen disrupt our plan. We are 5.5 years strong and I couldn’t be happier.


Anyway, What happened? you may find yourself asking.


I almost accidentally ate a beef samosa, I may find myself answering.


Let me explain.


Tonight I purchased a vegetable samosa from the local grocery store. It reveled in its own deep-friend, golden beauty from behind the deli glass. I was excited to eat this as a late night indulgence on my birthday. But at 8:21pm, upon baking and carefully cutting this flakey slice of heaven in two (because sharing is caring), my heart sank. My heart sank because inside lay beef. . . beef! Vegetable samosa my ass. On any other day of the week I would have rejoiced, What wonderful thing did I do to deserve this beefy surprise? I would have asked myself. But not today. And this is why:


Sometime in November I very randomly decided to go vegan. Don’t ask me why. I got bored. But this lasted all of one college football Saturday to which I bought a ton of tofu in a ton of variation and then failed miserably thereafter (because fake meat, no matter how seasoned or dressed, tastes awful to a through-and-through carnivore with unrefined dietary morals). A couple of weeks later, in the early days of December, my eventually-soon-to-be watched a documentary titled, Racing Extinction. He was enthralled, so I was intrigued. I only caught the final 30 minutes but I must admit it was eye-opening in its brevity. What’s your thing? I liked that ending. It spoke to me we then decided as a collective of two to turn our table into a primarily vegetarian spread. Minor fails with good intentions.


Soon following, the Big C crept into the background, and then into the foreground, of our reality. Friends and family were finding themselves ill. Quickly. Fatally. And at a movie-like pace as if the universe were saying specifically to us Wake the $%&# up. My eventually-soon-to-be became particularly afraid of this fate as research had been glaring us all in the face alongside surgeries and funerals. We talked. We agreed. We need to eat less beef. . . after Christmas, of course (you know, those damn unrefined morals like to cloak themselves in immoderacy). But then, THEN, on January 4, 2016 we finally watched “Cowspiracy” and both felt struck in the heart and in the conscious. We are done eating beef. And if possible, we are done eating factory farmed meat. We are done.


More minor fails, but those are for later.


For now I will say No, you did not stumble upon a vegan blog, nor a vegetarian cookbook. I am a normal ass person that enjoys good ass food that has made a tough ass decision to make a change for a healthier and more environmentally conscious lifestyle. . . but to not fault myself for taking it slow. This is a blog about my journey and these are the recipes that make to my table.