Allie and I watched Fast Food Nation a week or so ago. With the exception of a thin slice of Canadian bacon I had in California, I haven't eaten any meat other than fish since.
I know, it's a little odd. I'm married to a vegan. Been with her for seven years. I've heard a lot of her arguments against eating meat. Not only that, I actually toured a meat processing plant back in 2000, after which I wrote probably the most gruesome lead of my writing career, and I still had steak that night. Yet I've kept eating meat, with only the faintest bit of guilt and disgust.
ThenI watch a DVD and suddenly I'm averse to meat.
Guess it was powerful movie.
Or maybe I was just ready for a switch.
What got me was the climax of the movie, when its most sympathetic character was led across the floor to her own symbolic death: a job pulling kidneys from stench ridden intestines. As she moves slowly along she watches the cows killed with a single jolt between the eyes, drained of their blood and dismembered. It's one of the most masterful montages I've ever seen in a film, balletic almost.
In the nearly two hours leading to this scene, we're given a top to bottom view of that fast food chain, from the Big One burger wrapped in waxy paper to the illegal immigrants making the dangerous passage across the border to fill jobs in the meat plant. It reminded me of that movie Traffic because it revealed a secret world few can deny being a part of, and it showed the many ways in which it worsens society.
And since watching it, I haven't had the stomach for beef. Or pork. Or chicken.
I'm not sure how long this will last. I think I will eat meat again, but for now m sense is it'll more than likely be from local, grass-fed, humanely raised animals.
I think Allie's pleased with this recent turn. And I don't think she's the least bit jealous that it was a movie, of all things, that ultimately persuaded me.