This is the story of a bull called Blackie. Officially his name was 78662, which was the number printed on his earmark. But for simplicity we shall call him Blackie, because he was black, like all of his fellow Angus bulls.
Blackie died and came to beef heaven. From there, he watched the earth and observed the fate of his earthly remains. A big chunk of them reached, in the form of frozen hamburgers, a group of young people. They were many, and they were hungry, and so the burgers were quickly eaten. Blackie did not approve of being barbecued, but at least it was expertly done and the humans seemed to enjoy it.
Two lonely burgers remained as the evening turned into night and people started to leave. One was taken by a man and quickly devoured. The other… Blackie watched in anguish as a lady grabbed it and started to approach… would she really dare to… — “This is part of my body!” Blackie screamed, “I died for this!” — But his voice wasn’t heard.
Promptly, everything was cleaned up and disposed of. The man biked home and pondered what had just happened. It was there on his bike that he decided to write down Blackie’s story.
This is the end of the story. For the man, it is the end of a cognitive dissonance. He’d remember that burger, the last meat he ate before becoming a vegetarian.
I hope the name “Blackie” would not be offensive to an American audience. It certainly isn’t intended to. There was once an animal called Blackie who was dear to my heart and ended up being eaten, so I thought the name fit.
This is an emotional text, and so the conclusion might come across as a rushed decision. Yet I’ve read the text again the next day, and it still seemed good to me. The trashed hamburger might have been the drop that caused a bucket to overflow. There are many other people who influenced me, like my guitar teacher, the people behind veganaut.net, or the girls who kept track of food waste in a spreadsheet taped to their fridge.