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Posts Tagged ‘Labels’

I’m not a writer

I have always resisted calling myself a writer. In the most basic sense, you could argue that a child with the ability to write his own name is a writer. I may be a writer by this standard, for I can certainly write my own name, but this is a bit too broad for my taste.

If one were particularly pretentious, he could insist that only those who write well are writers; by writing well, he would of course, imply those who write well by his own standards. There is this fuzzy line from those who cannot write, those who can write, and those who are writers. I can write, but that does not make me a writer. When I think of a writer I think of someone whose principal occupation is writing. By this criterion, I am not yet a writer, although I should hope that I could consider myself one someday. Dreams are not reality, but they can become it. For now, I am merely a student of writing.

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My roommate actually reminded me that I’m a vegetarian the other day. It’s not like I forget things very easily. And it’s not exactly a new thing either; I’ve been a “vegetarian” for two years now. It’s such an ingrained habit that I no longer remember that most people consider my idea of normal food as slightly unusual.

I place “vegetarian” in quotes, because I’m not strict about it. I eat fish occasionally, which technically puts me in the category of pescatarian (a vegetarian who also eats fish). And I can remember at least twice in the past two years that I’ve eaten meat: my mom’s meatloaf and my boyfriend’s Thanksgiving turkey.

I used to say that I “try to maintain a plant-based diet.” People invariably responded by saying, “Oh, you’re a vegetarian!” I inwardly rolled my eyes as they verbalized the exact label I was trying to avoid, thinking about how I can simply agree with them and be done with it, or give them a detail explanation about how that is not perfectly accurate. I don’t ever bother to say that I’m a pescatarian, knowing that also begs for explanation. After two years, I think that I’ve given up, and accepted defeat. Whether I say it or not, I am apparently a “vegetarian.”

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