Sorry I've been off the grid the last few days -- I've been sick and that's thrown a bit of a wrench into my plans. I'm on the path to recovery now; enough, at least, that I can get out of bed and bring Ye Olde Laptop to Starbucks for a blog update. :)
So, let's get back on track with Day Two: Know The Basics.
One can't very well adopt a vegan diet and lifestyle unless they know what exactly it means to "be vegan". A vegan diet, per Sarah in "Vegan in 30 Days", is
"one that does not include any flesh from animals or any animal products." If one plans on expanding this to an entire lifestyle change, then this will also include using up or giving away any leather clothing items or accessories, and checking surprising household items like make-up, shampoo, soap, and even your medicine cabinet for sneaky animal-tested or animal ingredients.
Anyway, we're just focusing on the diet aspect right now. Back in 2009 I developed a real interest in the vegan lifestyle, thanks to that at-the-time famous book (whose title I have censored for Muslim-friendliness, lol), "Skinny B****". You guys can figure out what the "B" stands for.
"SB" became famous, largely for its "no-nonsense tough talk". It contained some good information, but was one of those books marketed as a diet book, when it was actually one of those hardline vegan books that shoved the "meat is murder" slogan down your throat while telling you that meat, milk, and cheese were the reason your butt (not their word) was the size of a small country. Like Guam. Or Cuba.
Not the most pleasant book, but the vegan lifestyle got a lot of attention because of it. I read it, then went looking for other books. Among the ones I read was "Vegan Freak 2.0", which had a bunch of good info, but the authors' attitudes clouded the message. Basically, they dictated what the "right" reasons were to be vegan, and if you didn't fit their criteria, you were a poser.
I also did a lot of reading up online back then. For extra help, I also have a "Vegetarian Times: Vegetarian Beginner's Guide" from when Borders was going out of business and I was working to adopt a vegetarian lifestyle. I've been pretty successful with that - I eat far more veggie food than meat - and I figure, via the power of the magical Interwebs, I can fill in the gaps.
Did you know that Hormel's Vegetarian Chili is vegan? It's also made of awesome with some saltines on the side when you're sick and have no money to go grocery shopping.