Posted by: Antonia Ciccolo | September 23, 2010

Vegan Challenge: Questions and Reactions

The past three months have definitely been more rewarding and exciting than challenging. I’ve really enjoyed my experience as a vegan, even if I was labeled “difficult” or “of concern” at times. I have definitely gotten some very funny questions and reactions over the months which I will share.

When I first told people about the challenge and my reasons for doing it (and I don’t think my reasoning was entirely consistent to everyone I spoke to), I got some very different reactions. When I told my Bostonian mother, her immediate reaction was, “does this mean you’re not going to eat lobster for the rest of the summer?” I’ve definitely missed Portsmouth lobster and the amazing $16 lobster rolls. When I told my Dad, his reaction was, “that’s fine, but you’re going to have to learn how to cook some good vegan meals.” This was a pretty typical response since my Italian father takes cooking to a whole new level.

When I told one of my consulting colleagues, his comical reaction was, “Vegan? Wait, is there a cure for that?” Another consulting colleague asked, “How do you handle all the amazing food smells?” Some of my friends had some lifestyle questions: Can you smoke hookah? Are condoms vegan? Can you drink alcohol?

I think my favorite reaction was from one of my co-workers/good friend on my consulting project in Houston who said, “That’s cool, I’m going to try to be vegan too.” Then each morning he would tell me that he woke up vegan and tried it out, but then broke it at some point in the day.

After reflecting on some of the reactions – most of which have been positive – I have a very big decision to make: should I stay vegan? I really do love being vegan and feel much better because of it but is it worth the hassle, planning, and explaining? I have one more week of the challenge to decide…


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