Author Topic: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians  (Read 21936 times)

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Sharnita

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #60 on: October 02, 2013, 11:54:07 AM »
The thing is, the vast number of dishes that could be eaten by vegetarians are not made or ordered for vegetarians at the gatherings I go to.

Teenyweeny

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #61 on: October 02, 2013, 11:55:21 AM »
Ok, so let's change it up a bit because I think the buffet aspect of the thing is becoming a red herring, because some people are mentioning that in their experience they would expect a food that had run out would be replenished.

Say you are eating 'family style' or 'potluck-style', (i.e. there is a buffet of sorts but no expectation that the food will be replenished, what you see on the table is what is available), is it still ok to take from a 'special' dish that clearly will not serve everybody there?


You can come up with 101 scenarios but the results are the same.  People in general aren't trying to deprive others of certain foods on purpose.  They aren't rude for preferring the "special" dish over the main dish being offered.  The only way they will be rude if the hostess makes the entire room silent and announces, "Please do NOT take from this platter if you aren't (insert type here)."   Or if there is a clearly marked sign, "DO NOT TAKE IF YOU AREN"T THIS TYPE".

It's not rude to prefer veggie burgers, but if there are clearly 5 veggie burgers and 25 guests, I think it's more considerate for the meat eaters to take from other dishes until the veggies have had a chance to take their first serving.

ETA: I'm not saying don't take from the 'special' dishes, just to hang back from taking from them until the crowd that can only eat those dishes has had an opportunity to serve themselves.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2013, 11:57:38 AM by Teenyweeny »



WillyNilly

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #62 on: October 02, 2013, 11:55:36 AM »
Let's express it in a different way, and I think we'll get more buy-in. If you know there are vegetarians in the group, it is considerate to avoid the vegetarian options until you are sure that they have had enough (at least one serving).

If you are unaware that a specific dish is there because it's all one person can eat, and no one tells you that until you've eaten most of it, it's not really your fault, but the fault of the organizer.

That's what I'm saying. If it is known that there are vegetarians at this party (and in every circle that I move in, it's a near certainty that there will be at least a handful), then it would be nicer if people avoided the more limited veggie options until everybody had had a chance to take their first serving.

Certainly at this particular party, it was known that there were at least 4-5 veggies.

But the point others are making is just because one choice is nicer, doesn't mean the other choice is rude.

If I get to "seat yourself" performance first and choose the best seat in the house, and then someone comes later and is shorter then me, it would be nice for me to move and give them my spot, but its not rude for me not to.
If I bring my lunch to work and pack a bunch of awesome home made cookies for myself as dessert its nice for me to share but not rude if I eat my lunch and don't share.
Etc.
Being nice is great, but its not the exact same thing as being polite.

Zilla

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #63 on: October 02, 2013, 11:55:51 AM »
Let's express it in a different way, and I think we'll get more buy-in. If you know there are vegetarians in the group, it is considerate to avoid the vegetarian options until you are sure that they have had enough (at least one serving).

If you are unaware that a specific dish is there because it's all one person can eat, and no one tells you that until you've eaten most of it, it's not really your fault, but the fault of the organizer.

That's what I'm saying. If it is known that there are vegetarians at this party (and in every circle that I move in, it's a near certainty that there will be at least a handful), then it would be nicer if people avoided the more limited veggie options until everybody had had a chance to take their first serving.

Certainly at this particular party, it was known that there were at least 4-5 veggies.


Then it would be well known that people tend to prefer the veggie options despite it not being for them.  As a hostess you have two options, have more of the veggie options OR place the veggie option in the kitchen and tell the well known veggies where it is.  After they are done with it, then bring it out.


These are the politest two ways of doing it without trying to make a spectacle of themselves by announcing it's only for X group or hoping that people will go and find the well known 4 or 5 veggies and ask if they are done.  In fact as a veggie, I would feel uncomfortable and even if I was NOT done, I would tell them of course go ahead.  So it's a moot point really.

Knitterly

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #64 on: October 02, 2013, 11:57:09 AM »
I'm an omnivore. I eat meat. But I'm by no means a "meat lover". I love vegetables. And I prefer cheese or spinach pizza to any other types of pizza. Just because I do eat meat doesn't mean I want every dish, or even every meal to have meat in it. And I get pretty insulted when vegetarians assume that because I do eat meat it means I always eat tons of meat to the exclusion of other foods.

As i said in the other thread, when at a buffet party people should do a quick scan of the number of people of at the event and at the number of servings of each food and only take one portion. But if all foods are presented to all the guests, every guest has equal rights to try any of the foods.

I absolutely agree. I'm talking specifically about cases where it's clear that one dish won't stretch to give everybody present a reasonable helping (e.g. 10 veggie burgers and 25 guests). Then, if you aren't veggie, I think it's rude to take a veggie burger.

So its rude for me to take the food I prefer because I'm not strict about never eating meat? Because I choose to be flexible in life I should not get my preferred foods at parties but rather should be relegated to eat what I don't want? That doesn't sound very polite.

Most vegetarians are so by choice not by necessity. And most vegetarians despite the rumors won't in fact get sick if they suddenly consume meat. So I really don't see why if someone chooses to not ever meat they should be granted things they like while the person who chooses to simply eat less meat should not get what they prefer because they are willing to compromise.

Ok, let's say there are two people, and two burgers. One is a veggie burger, one is a beef burger. Ann is a vegetarian, Bob is not, although Bob actually prefers veggie burgers to beef burgers, and doesn't really eat that much meat anyway.

Does Bob get to take the veggie burger, leaving Ann hungry? I think we'd all say that Bob was at least being inconsiderate, if not rude.

Similarly, when I eat with vegan friends I make sure that I let them have the lion's share of the vegan-friendly food, even if the tofu looks super yummy (and I do love me some tofu  ;) ), because it would be inconsiderate of me to place my tastes above their need to eat a decent meal.

Bob wouldn't be the inconsiderate one. The host would be.

You are saying omnivores don't deserve to get what they prefer and should suffer for their choice to not be picky. That is not fair or polite or considerate of omnivores, it just isn't. Not being picky should be rewarded not punished. Why should Bob not get what he prefers? Why should Bob always have to suck it up and take the least desirable thing simply because Ann refuses to compromise and occasionally eat meat like Bob does even though Bob does not prefer meat?
If Bob chooses to defer to Ann that's him being extra nice and he should be thanked and recognized, but he should not be forced to take the less desirable item simply because Ann refuses to budge.

Your post equates vegetarianism with pickiness.  That actually upsets me a bit as a vegetarian.

It's not pickiness.  It's a lifestyle choice which is comprised of many factors.  For me, it is a combination of health and ethical reasons.  It's not pickiness.  I'm not a pain in the butt about my vegetarianism.  I cook meat for my husband and daughter.  I abstain from eating it.  I suffer from several health problems and abstaining from meat helps control those problems as an unintended side effect of what was initially purely an ethical choice for myself.  For some people, the ethics of vegetarianism is such a strong motivator as to be religious.  Some choose vegetarianism for religious reasons (many hindus and buddhists, for example, choose to eat vegetarian).  Some choose it out of such a strong moral objection to the meat industry that it becomes a spiritual or religious-like motivation. 

Pickiness is very different.  Pickiness is "I won't eat meat because it's gross.".  Meat isn't gross.  It's very very tasty.  Most of the vegetarians I know recognize that it looks and smells and tastes yummy.  Sometimes I miss it.  Most vegetarians do it for a combination of health and ethical reasons (watch Food Inc if you wonder what I mean by "ethical reasons").  They don't do it to be snobby, a pain in the bum, or picky.  There are some who are vegetarians because it's cool and trendy.  I know lots of vegetarians and (thankfully) don't know anyone who does it to be trendy.  It's actually a pretty significant lifestyle choice and takes a lot of commitment and motivation to stick to.  Because, frankly, meat is yummy and smells really good!!

Let's pretend that we're not talking about tofu.  Let's pretend that we're talking about halal or kosher chicken dogs in a room where there are 3 people who cannot eat beef for religious reasons.  There is a big plate of beef hotdogs and a small plate of 6 chicken hotdogs.  There are enough for 2 hotdogs for everyone.  The beef-eaters choose the chicken dogs because they are super yummy.  This leaves one hotdog each for the 3 people who abstain from beef for religious reasons.

Two of the beefeaters who took a chicken dog know that there are people who choose to abstain from beef in attendance.  One of the beefeaters does not know.

The beefeaters who know about the non-beefeaters may nto be outright rude, but they are definitely being extremely inconsiderate.  The one who does NOT know why there are chicken dogs is being neither rude nor inconsiderate.

However, in an ideal, polite society, everyone at the party (whether they know about the non-beefeaters or not) would look at the big plate of beef dogs and the small plate of chicken dogs and make the logical, thoughtful conclusion that those chicken dogs are probably for someone specific.  In their uncertainty, perfectly polite folks would ask.

Of course, the solution is to host as you do, and have enough veggie options available that everybody can make a decent meal out of them if they so choose, but that often isn't the case.

Now, this, I agree with, especially the bolded.  In those situations, however, the responsibility lies with the host, not the guests.

It has been my experience that if you're hosting for 20 people and only 5 are vegetarians, offering enough veggie options for 20 people to make a decent meal out of them virtually guarantees a HUGE quantity of leftovers.

I often make the mistake of doing this and always end up with a fridge full of leftovers that start to spoil before I can finish it all.

It's certainly ideal to do so, but if previous experience has taught a host that "this is how much vegetarian food typically gets eaten", providing slightly more than that amount ought to be sufficient.  If providing slightly more than usually gets eaten ends up not being enough, the host/ess hasn't been a bad host/ess or shirked their responsibility to the guests.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2013, 11:59:03 AM by Knitterly »

audrey1962

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #65 on: October 02, 2013, 11:58:01 AM »
Ok, so let's change it up a bit because I think the buffet aspect of the thing is becoming a red herring, because some people are mentioning that in their experience they would expect a food that had run out would be replenished.

Say you are eating 'family style' or 'potluck-style', (i.e. there is a buffet of sorts but no expectation that the food will be replenished, what you see on the table is what is available), is it still ok to take from a 'special' dish that clearly will not serve everybody there?

Yes.

audrey1962

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #66 on: October 02, 2013, 12:01:41 PM »
That's what I'm saying. If it is known that there are vegetarians at this party (and in every circle that I move in, it's a near certainty that there will be at least a handful), then it would be nicer if people avoided the more limited veggie options until everybody had had a chance to take their first serving.

Certainly at this particular party, it was known that there were at least 4-5 veggies.

Teenyweeny, you seem quite insistent that the other guests were rude. Are you just seeking validation?

Teenyweeny

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #67 on: October 02, 2013, 12:02:09 PM »
Let's express it in a different way, and I think we'll get more buy-in. If you know there are vegetarians in the group, it is considerate to avoid the vegetarian options until you are sure that they have had enough (at least one serving).

If you are unaware that a specific dish is there because it's all one person can eat, and no one tells you that until you've eaten most of it, it's not really your fault, but the fault of the organizer.

That's what I'm saying. If it is known that there are vegetarians at this party (and in every circle that I move in, it's a near certainty that there will be at least a handful), then it would be nicer if people avoided the more limited veggie options until everybody had had a chance to take their first serving.

Certainly at this particular party, it was known that there were at least 4-5 veggies.

But the point others are making is just because one choice is nicer, doesn't mean the other choice is rude.

If I get to "seat yourself" performance first and choose the best seat in the house, and then someone comes later and is shorter then me, it would be nice for me to move and give them my spot, but its not rude for me not to.
If I bring my lunch to work and pack a bunch of awesome home made cookies for myself as dessert its nice for me to share but not rude if I eat my lunch and don't share.
Etc.
Being nice is great, but its not the exact same thing as being polite.

Well, in the theatre example, you've paid for the seat and gone out of your way to get there early. It's a business transaction, not a hosted event, so I think your obligations to others become different. Like, it's not rude for me to buy the last iPhone in the shop, because I'm buying it, with my money, fair and square.

Similarly, there's no expectation (by most reasonable people) that you would share your packed lunch. In a communal eating situation, the whole point is that the food is shared. The whole nature of the scenario is different.



Library Dragon

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #68 on: October 02, 2013, 12:03:44 PM »
The obligation is still on the host, not the guests.  When I host dinner knowing there are vegetarians I don't make a smaller amount of food for the vegetarians.  I make a large amount of a dish they can eat.  Spinach risotto is often my favorite option.  A guest may have never had risotto before and say, "Oh, I want to try that."  It is on me as the hostess to plan enough for everyone, not chance that a guest won't have enough food. 

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GreenHall

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #69 on: October 02, 2013, 12:03:51 PM »
When I was vegetarian, and our office ordered a bazillion meat pizzas and one veggie one, I'd watch in dismay as people went, "Oh, good, veggies!  Something lighter!" It simply never entered their mind that the vegetarian would be left with nothing to eat.

I feel bad knowing I haven't gotten to the end of the thread, but I keep seeing Pizza stories pop up here.  The above is one situation, but from what I've seen with my vegetarian relatives, even more common is - each person/family orders the pizza(s) they want, but the serving winds up buffet-ish.  And many of the people who ordered meat pizzas for themselves, decide the cheese or veggie looks good too.  And take some.  And have leftover meat pizza, while the vegetarians may or may not even get a meal's worth.  I try to be mindful of this when I'm in groups ordering, and suggest any extra pizzas be either veggie, or plain cheese.

Teenyweeny

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #70 on: October 02, 2013, 12:04:32 PM »
That's what I'm saying. If it is known that there are vegetarians at this party (and in every circle that I move in, it's a near certainty that there will be at least a handful), then it would be nicer if people avoided the more limited veggie options until everybody had had a chance to take their first serving.

Certainly at this particular party, it was known that there were at least 4-5 veggies.

Teenyweeny, you seem quite insistent that the other guests were rude. Are you just seeking validation?

No, I just wanted viewpoints. I actually have moved from thinking them rude to thinking them inconsiderate, because now I see how much people just don't think of these things.



Teenyweeny

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #71 on: October 02, 2013, 12:05:52 PM »
The obligation is still on the host, not the guests.  When I host dinner knowing there are vegetarians I don't make a smaller amount of food for the vegetarians.  I make a large amount of a dish they can eat.  Spinach risotto is often my favorite option.  A guest may have never had risotto before and say, "Oh, I want to try that."  It is on me as the hostess to plan enough for everyone, not chance that a guest won't have enough food.

Oh, absolutely, having plentiful food is the ideal solution. But where this is not the case....?



redboothe

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #72 on: October 02, 2013, 12:06:07 PM »
Again, I think the problem is with the self-identification. Ann calls herself a vegetarian, Bob eats very little meat but doesn't call himself one. But what if he only eats meat that is raised in a certain way that meets his ethical guidelines? what if he only eats certain types of meat? What if he has a health problem that prevents him from eating meat most of the time but he "cheats" once and a while when it's something so delicious he is willing to deal with the side-effects?

I think the rude thing in this scenario is judging other people's actions and food choices without knowing their reasoning and assuming the worst of them because of it.

People have lots of their own rules and reasons about what they eat and why - no one's needs should be placed above anyone else's. If there is a food available in a limited quantity for a specific group - this should be announced and respected. If it's not announced? Fair game

Library Dragon

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #73 on: October 02, 2013, 12:07:40 PM »
The obligation is still on the host, not the guests.  When I host dinner knowing there are vegetarians I don't make a smaller amount of food for the vegetarians.  I make a large amount of a dish they can eat.  Spinach risotto is often my favorite option.  A guest may have never had risotto before and say, "Oh, I want to try that."  It is on me as the hostess to plan enough for everyone, not chance that a guest won't have enough food.

Oh, absolutely, having plentiful food is the ideal solution. But where this is not the case....?

Then in it's still on the host to announce/serve in a manner that allows those with food restrictions to have a chance to eat.  Not the other guests.

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audrey1962

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Re: S/0 taking food for kids: taking food for vegetarians
« Reply #74 on: October 02, 2013, 12:08:00 PM »
That's what I'm saying. If it is known that there are vegetarians at this party (and in every circle that I move in, it's a near certainty that there will be at least a handful), then it would be nicer if people avoided the more limited veggie options until everybody had had a chance to take their first serving.

Certainly at this particular party, it was known that there were at least 4-5 veggies.

Teenyweeny, you seem quite insistent that the other guests were rude. Are you just seeking validation?

No, I just wanted viewpoints. I actually have moved from thinking them rude to thinking them inconsiderate, because now I see how much people just don't think of these things.

Ah, now I understand. Thank you for explaining.