Welcome to This Vegan Life, home of loud and proud vegan Kim Willis.
I've been blogging about my every day adventures for a decade over on The Lunacy Of Ink, ramblings for which I won awards, thank you very much.
In January 2016 I was happily omnivorous, head in sand, ham in hand, when I settled down to watch the film 'Dairy Is Scary' and boom - hello veganism.
As I like to write about what I do, it was only a matter of time before I began to chronicle my reveries here at This Vegan Life.
Kim Vs Kim
My About Me page - who better to write about me, than me? Just ask me.
My dad has developed a curious habit of asking the questions he thinks the conversation requires in order to flow in the direction of which he has the answers.
For example, he’ll say: ‘How was bridge last night?’ and then he’ll answer his own question, for it is he who has played bridge, not I. Yoga is my thing, but he’s more likely to ask himself how bridge was, than ask me how yoga was. I could slink away and he’d just carry on asking himself questions he can answer. ‘Would you like another drink?’ ‘Is it bedtime?’
Thus, I will take inspiration and hereby interview myself with the questions I would like me to ask me about my little vegan journey.
Hey Kim! It’s your old chicken eating, cheese loving, leather wearing self here. Thought I’d check in.
Oh hi old Kim! How lovely to hear from you. I haven’t missed you.
Cheers then. Before we get started, may I say how fine you are looking. Have you lost weight?
I have! Remember that stubborn half stone? Turns out it’s a doddle to lose. It must have been half a stone of burgers and cheese and pudding, which was kept in your big fat meat storage facility, mostly located in the tummy area but with satellite storage in the bum and thigh zones. I even coined a phrase: ‘Came for the animals - stayed for the body!’ which my husband tells me is funny.
You used to hate vegans. What happened? I feel like I don’t know you anymore.
It's true, I've had a major personality transplant. I always thought vegans were boring and meat was brilliant and I didn’t know or care about what the animals had gone through to get to my plate, or what the consequences to the environment were, because loving burgers and hating salad was all part of Brand Kim. Then I started watching documentaries, reading articles and books and suddenly I wanted to care. I wanted every penny I spent and every meal I ate to say THIS IS NOT OKAY to the old ways. I couldn’t be a quiet vegan, I had to start a website just to think my thoughts out loud. I don’t think you'd like the new me, but I love the new me, so it doesn’t matter what you think.
You’re right. I'm turning in my meaty little grave. Just because you’ve changed doesn’t mean anyone else has to. Can’t you just shut up about it?
No, no I can't. It needs to be talked about. It needs to be the new normal. The planet is buckling under the burden of animal agriculture. If you don't care about animals, what about future generations of humans, your own flesh and blood? I don't even have kids and I still want to leave the planet in a better state than I found it. It makes me sad that so many farmed animals lead miserable lives and suffer horrific deaths for our greedy sake. Why is that okay? Why don’t more people care? The more of us there are, the better hope there is for the future, the more lives are saved and the healthier we'll all be. Did I mention you'd lose weight? "Come for the animals, stay for the body!" - intellectual property of Kim Willis.
Whatever, sucker! Mmmm, bacon.
Don’t tell me, it’s ‘high-welfare’ bacon. It’s free range. It's all the good marketing terminology. It's humanely slaughtered - whatever the shit that means. You have been fooled, Old Kim.
You thought your Tesco sausages came from pigs raised on the bucolic sounding Woodside Farm. You were duped. Doesn’t exist.
You thought free-range eggs came from chickens roaming around a field pecking little treats from the ground? Wrong.
Stop ruining my dinner, killjoy! Let me eat my bacon in ignorant bliss! Your friends must think you are annoying now. Banging on about veganism like you’re some kind of plant-powered revolutionist.
I am the revolution! I am on the right side of history! I am the future! I am saving the planet! Yes, they probably do.
But, protein though!
But, B12 though!
But, canine teeth though!
But, our ancestors though!
But, plants have feelings though!
But, even growing crops kills animals though!
Old Kim, I am embarrassed to be associated with you. Can we pretend you never existed? Let's just say I was smart enough to be vegan from birth and never disassociated the animals I loved from the animals I ate. The vegan in me was always strong, but stifled. At eight years old I wrote to Japan to tell them off for their mistreatment of dolphins. (Literally just addressed the envelope to Japan - not sure it got to the right people considering the Cove came out twenty years later.) As you can see in the picture above, I loved Guinea pigs so much I was on the verge of tears at the prospect of anyone taking them away from me. It just took 33 years to make the connection.
Remember what you were like about five minutes ago when you loved burgers and cheese? Why do you have to go about your veganism with such militant and mouthy gusto?
Er, you do remember who you're talking to don't you? I was a militant and mouthy meat eater too. All that’s changed is which side of the hamburger fence I’m shouting about.
Well, this has been fun. Bye Kim.
Bye. Stay vegan, stay classy. Don't tell anyone but I actually wish I'd turned into you a long time ago.
Yes! I win!
Well, what do you know, my dad is onto something. If you pose your own questions, you can have a great chat. Who needs interaction with other human beans! I’ve got me!