The biggest passion of my life is practicing martial arts and I am very fond of the whole philosophy which gravitates around it. I am keen and dedicated but I can’t consider myself an activist. Yes I would love to help more and more people finding out and start practicing martial arts but I hope I am not too pushy about it. This post describes activism I experienced in (non) drinking, vegetarianism and veganism.
I occasionally like to have a drink, particularly with friends when socialising, but I have no problem whatsoever if anybody is on soft drinks. When I am buying a round I will buy for people drinking anything reasonable they like. I experienced people who would buy a round and buy drinks just for people on soft drinks; perhaps it’s because alcoholic drinks are more expensive but, in many cases I was told it’s because they don’t promote or encourage drinking alcohol, they are actually against it and behave actively against it.
Food and diets have changed substantially over the last 20 years or so; a more generalised circulation of people around the world, together with Internet, have exposed us all to a range of very different diets and new foods. In my approach I tend to be moderated and respect other people likes and needs, as long as they don’t interfere with my own wellbeing. I recently told an activist vegan to bring his own food at a party I was organising simply because I just had no idea where to start shopping for a vegan. In Italy where I am from I never met a vegetarian; until the nineties when I move to the UK we just had very few of them and none of my friends or relatives is. Over the years I got used to provide the so called “vegetarian option” when cooking for many people as, at most parties and dinners, there are always a few which will not eat meat and that’s fine and kidn of given for granted. The discrimination I feel against myself is the fact that no vegetarian would provide a meat or fish option when cooking for a party that, most likely, will include not vegetarians.
An interesting story is about Steve Jobs (former founder and CEO of Apple) who was once in Cambridge and having dinner at a pub run by a friend of mine; Jobs was the kind of activist I describe in this post, activist about non drinking and vegetarianism to the point that he told my friends to put on his tab anything his table would order which was alcohol free drinks and vegetarian food. People ordering meat of fish meals and alcoholic drinks had to pay their own.