Oh, Mary, that’s just lovely. Of course I’d like to come for dinner tonight. We had such a wonderful time this weekend at the farmer’s market. It got a bit warm, though, didn’t it? When I got home, my Moby wrap was so sweaty from carrying my sweet Tallula all day. Good thing I sprung for the organic cotton! I mean, can you even imagine?
At any rate, I’d love to join you and Donald for dinner. But if you don’t mind, might I ask what you’re serving?
No, I’m not picky per se, but I just have some limitations.
Well, why don’t you just tell me what you had planned on serving and I’ll let you know. I think it will probably be easier this way.
Course 1: Soup
While crab bisque does sound delicious, I am not so sure if that’s a wise idea. You see, a few years ago, I had a bad experience with some lobster ravioli. Sure, it went down just great, but then my throat closed up in anaphylaxis, and I got hives all over my body. It was just terrible. But you and Donald should go on and enjoy the crab bisque. I’ll just join in the fun after the soup course. Besides, I’ve been having trouble shedding this baby weight. I’m not going to stand here and preach, but we all could stand to skip a few courses now and then!
What’s that you say? You’re making your own baguettes! Well, that’s just divine. Knowing your cooking, Mary, I’ll bet they’re perfectly crusty and when you tear them with your two hungry mits, the steam rises and butter melts on sight, like a teenager seeing Zac Efron. He’s a doll, isn’t he?
I wish I could partake and enjoy the baguettes, Mary, really I do. But you see, when I eat gluten, I get dippy and autistic. I have trouble righting myself in a world that’s so wrong as it is. You don’t actually call someone who suffers from celiac disease a celiac. That’s really insensitive, Mary. Why does everyone want to put people into categories, into boxes? I’m a person who just happens to have trouble digesting gluten. It’s relatively common, you know. I’m not even sure people are supposed to eat gluten, really. I’m not going to stand here and preach, but you should try a world without gluten. You might think you’re low energy for a few days, but it’s all in your head. Carbohydrates are almost entirely unnecessary once you’ve unlocked the energy of navy beans.
Course 2: Appetizer
No, potatoes don’t contain gluten. They’re gluten-free. See, this isn’t so hard to accommodate. What did you have in mind? Oh. Hand-cut potato skins with cheese and home cured bacon. Mary, that’s not going to work on so many levels for me. But it’s alright! Oh, don’t be silly. We can figure something out.
Well, something I didn’t tell you but wanted to chat through tonight is that I recently got in touch with my spiritual side, and I’ve really taken a liking to what I’ve learned from the Jewish faith. So, I’m all in now. Earlier, when you said crab bisque, I didn’t want to mention because I didn’t think it would come up, but I only eat kosher now. So, there’s no shellfish and there’s no pork products of any kind. The adjustment hasn’t been too bad. I’m not going to stand here and preach, but there’s something really cleansing about removing bottom-feeders. What’s ironic about that, Mary? I’m not sure I get your joke.
Course 3: Salad
Ah, yes, the salad course. This time, with confidence, Mary! We can do this!
Oh, a wedge salad. No bells and whistles. Simple food. Hmm. No, I’m not disappointed. I’m not. Well fine, I’ll just say it. I’m pretty sick and tired of salads. It’s like, whenever I go to a restaurant or meet with friends, they’re always shoving salad on me. It’s not the only thing I’ll eat, you know. I’m not going to stand here and preach, but there’s a whole world out there beyond lettuce. Iceberg, dead ahead, indeed.
No, I don’t want to just try some other night. Let’s not count me out just yet, Mary.
Course 4: Main Course
You would go to a kosher butcher for your steak, just for me? I’m so flattered, Mary. That is so incredibly kind of you. Truly. Well, now I feel like a real killjoy, don’t I? Well, there’s something else I forgot to tell you. When you were talking about the crab and the bacon and the butter and cheese, well, I should have just said it then but I wasn’t sure it would matter. I’m vegan, Mary.
I’ve been avoiding animal products for about two weeks now, and I’ve never felt so good. Well, I guess I have felt this good before, but I’ve never felt so ethically clean and consistent. This is a lifestyle choice that I’m unwilling to compromise. I’m not going to stand here and preach, but you can’t spell righteous without right. And might doesn’t make right. So now I’m fighting for animal rights. And I’m right. And that’s what’s important.
Course 5: Dessert
Ice cream? Mary, were you listening? Well, I’m sorry to be brash, but hello, I just told you I’m vegan. Ice cream would just be introducing things to my system that my body just doesn’t need. Sorry I’m not sorry that you don’t understand. This is important Mary. There must be another something. No, I’d have trouble digesting a pie crust, remember? Sure, I’ll hang on while you check your recipe book.
Oh, well, that’s wonderful. Your peanut butter cookies don’t have flour? That’s very accommodating, but I’m afraid that just won’t work. Well, I’m deathly allergic to peanuts, Mary. Like, if you thought the shellfish allergy was bad — woof! Wait till you see me jam an epinephrine pen into my leg at the dinner table. Did you just say you’d like to see that? That isn’t funny you know. This is very serious stuff, Mary. It’s nothing to joke about. Besides, those cookies probably have eggs, don’t they? Yeah, I thought so. How many times do I have to proclaim it? Mary, I’m vegan.
You know what, you’ve been really unaccommodating and inhospitable about this whole thing. I expected a friend like you to be more understanding and supportive. I’m not going to stand here and preach, but you can just mark me down as an RSVP for no. I’ll be home eating couscous and drinking a superfood smoothie — hold the yogurt.