Howdie, Beth Allison!

The Wrangler sat down with senior Beth Allison to talk to her about her vegan lifestyle and what it consists of, and how her life revolves around being a vegan.

JB: What made you want to switch from being a vegetarian to a vegan?

BA: It’s because I watched these documentaries that were about, like, not just eating meat but the dairy industry too. A lot of people think that when you stop eating meat you’re not killing anything, so I  went through all the things about how when a dairy cow is supposed to get milk it has to be pregnant first so it can get milk for its baby. So they make [the cow] pregnant and then within 48 hours of the cow giving birth to the baby they take the baby away and they kill it. So after I went through all of that I was like, “Oh my god! I don’t want to kill anything!” So then I went vegan.

JB: How long has it been since you went vegan?

BA: I went vegetarian Thanksgiving morning last Thanksgiving [2012]. I had a big plate of bacon, and I have never eaten meat since then. And then I went vegan February 1st.

JB: What are the main things you cannot eat?

BA: No meat, no dairy, no eggs, nothing that comes from an animal, […] like a plant based diet. But vegan literally means you don’t use anything that comes from an animal; you don’t use wool, you don’t use leather, and yeah my car has leather, but it’s not like I could stop that.

JB: Did you have any vegan friends beforehand that helped you make the decision or have you met any now close friends from becoming vegan? Has it hurt any friendships?

BA: Nope no vegan friends. It’s weird— not friendship wise but dating wise. Because we go to a restaurant […] I can literally only order  a plate of lettuce maybe, depending on where it is. I can’t go on normal people dates. Like you can come to my house, and I can cook for you but that’s a really awkward first date. So my dating choices are limited.

JB: That’s why vegans can only date vegans?

BA: Yeah, and it’s an ethical thing too, like you don’t eat these things, so you want someone that supports you. I had a boyfriend while I was vegan, and he was like, “Why are you eating like this?” He didn’t understand it at all and thought I was the weirdest person, and it just didn’t work. And I had a boyfriend that would  literally eat a steak in front of me and wave it in my face. I don’t think that’s funny. It really just bothered me.

JB: Has it interfered with you being in the school’s practicum program?

BA: Not really. She doesn’t make me cook meat anymore, or she tries not to, because I don’t like to. But I still cook meat if I have to because we don’t really make much vegan stuff.

JB: Do you think you will be vegan for the rest of your life? Why?

BA: I hope so! That’d be great.

JB: Do you believe being vegan is healthier or has made you healthier?

BA: It has made me healthier, but then I go and eat things like vegan pizza and bad stuff. So there is a healthy way to do it, and there is an unhealthy way to do it, and I’m kind of like in the middle. So yeah, it kind of did make me healthier.

JB: Does your track coach agree with it?

BA: That’s a good question because I told her I was a vegan the second week I was in track and she was like, “Oh, good for you!” and then we never talked about it again. So I don’t really know what she thinks about it. But she doesn’t disagree with it, so that’s a good thing.

JB: Are you a part of any associations or groups? Tell me about them.

BA: There is this co-op called Rawfully Organic; it’s in Houston they do it on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. You can go volunteer.  They survive off volunteers—it’s a non-profit. We put together these big boxes of fruits and vegetables. They are all organic and most of them are sourced locally, and it’s really interesting and fun.

JB: What does Rawfully Organic do?

BA: I can’t go on Tuesdays and Thursdays because it’s during school, but Saturdays you get there at like nine and put up all the tents, and we take all the boxes from the fruit that had been from the week before and lay them out. So we have a fruit share (which is all fruit) and then a half share (which is fruits and mostly vegetables) and then a full share which is double of what the half share is. And then this truck comes, and we unload tons of fruits and vegetables— like tons! There is so much. And then we will put like 18 oranges in the fruit share, and apples, and maybe like one pineapple. And then people will come at 11 o’clock and they will either reserve the box the night before or come and get it that day, and they pick it up, and that’s pretty much it.