Day 35/365 - On eating out
Eating out has become a source of stress for people that are health and environmentally conscious. The task of choosing a place to eat is now an enormous headache, especially in a metropolis like New York, where the options are endless but the quality dubious.
Even if you are up for the daunting hunt for good eats, it is not always up to you to choose the venue. What do you do when you are invited out for a social event? A friend’s birthday, a work event, or maybe a date? If you are in the minority when it comes to being a food advocate, what are you to do? Do you bail on your social life or do you conform to the majority’s ruling?
These are all valid questions that face us in the daily routine of living the “big city life.” We don’t have the luxury of knowing where our food comes from, let alone the pleasure of picking and eating fresh/local/organic produce right from our antibiotic/pesticide/hormone-free farm. We can be advocates of health and change in our personal lives, professions, hobbies, and homes, but it’s hard to take this ethic everywhere we go.
Sometimes it’s not feasible to stay within the same values as your social circles, or even your family. The question of how far you stray, is a question of your integrity and inner voice. It’s hard to compromise, but it’s also difficult to completely cut people out of your life based on different ideologies. You may feel validated by your mission, but being righteous doesn’t send the message to the choir. Leading by example of kindness and compassion is the only thing that can convince people to follow your leadership.
Ask yourself what is more important to you. If it’s keeping your old ties, then you may just have to bite the bullet and take one for the team once in awhile. Go out to that restaurant that serves food of questionable origin, and try to make the most of their menu. Or try to suggest a better option if your friends/coworkers/family are open to it. Try to educate but be kind and humble. Good luck in navigating the concrete restaurant jungle scene!