Inside Doug's Head

I am not a number, I am… What's that stuff they make glue out of? I'm that. Forever swirling, forwards and upwards, but always sticky. Sometimes, a little sad.

About 100,000 years ago, probably on a Saturday, some smart monkey discovered that if you leave a soggy bowl of grain sitting out in the open, yeast, the magical fairy dust that pervasively floats around in the air, will land on it and turn it in into alcohol. Drinking that alcohol subsequently led to numerous agricultural innovations and bar fights over monkey chicks. Nature did that. Today, also a Saturday, drinking Russian vodka is a natural extension of what happens when humans nurture a monkey’s natural alcohol fueled tendencies.

Sometimes, though, our creativity gives us inspiration that is far bigger than our capability to deliver. Thog, the ancient French cave artist, was inspired to paint his mind’s view of the majestic landscape that surrounded him. Lacking sufficient talent to make his vision a reality, Thog was forced to settle for a crude, blobby representation of a wooly mammoth being stuck in the face by a pointy stick held by Grog (no relation). Similarly, I am going to have to settle for a crudely written blunt-force-trauma version of what is floating around in my head right now. Liquor only gets me so far, and then I have to rely on talent, a resource I am sadly lacking.

Something to consider: as it turns out, there is no animal a human cannot eat, and I have done some research on this point. If it walks, flies, swims, crawls, wriggles, or slithers upon the face of the earth, we can take a stick, bash it a good one, cook it and eat it. The protein that these creatures provide, while full of caloric energy, is so useful to us that, rather than converting it to fuel, our digestive system uses it directly to make us bigger and stronger. While you may find that a meal of monitor lizard gives you gas, or bald eagle tastes gamey and a little unpleasant, your personal preferences do not counter the fact, regardless of its source, a small amount of meat contains a lot of vitamins and protein that a thinking and drinking monkey needs to survive.

Plants, on the other hand, have been trying to kill us ever since we slithered out of the ocean, and I am not talking about choking on broccoli. Thousands of plant species contain toxins fatally poisonous to humans. Some plants will even kill us just for looking at them. By all means, take your chances: forage naked in the wilderness all day long for your next meal. I hope you enjoy your death. If given the chance, carrots would kill you and everyone you care about.

One farmer says to me, “You cannot live on vegetable food solely, for it furnishes nothing to make bones with”; and so he religiously devotes a part of his day to supplying his system with the raw material of bones; walking all the while he talks behind his oxen, which, with vegetable-made bones, jerk him and his lumbering plow along in spite of every obstacle.

Henry David Thoreau—History’s first douchebag

What bags of dirt and douche like Thoreau don’t seem to get is, just because you don’t understand Biology and Physiology, doesn’t make them less relevant to reality. Cows weigh around 1200 – 1500 pounds, and more than half of that weight is a massive digestive system for breaking down plant and vegetable matter. Cows have four stomachs (ruminant chambers) for digesting grass. The small intestine of a human is about 10 feet long, that of a cow’s is 90-180 feet. Cows don’t need to read a book to tell them which plants are poisonous; they just seem to know. Also, cows never learned to read. They were too busy digesting. There’s a joke in there about Readers Digest, but it isn’t happening for me right now.

One fine evening a long time ago, Thog, looked woefully upon his plate of kale and radishes, and asked himself, What if I gave the salad to the cow, and then ate the cow? With that epiphany, humans climbed out of the evolutionary cesspool we had fallen into. Now, for some reason, there are those who want to climb back in and wallow around.

This post is dedicated to Thog, the unsung hero and benefactor of human kind. Remember, vegetables should be enjoyed safely and in moderation.


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