Tuesday, 12 May 2020

Prejudices in meat

(Vegetarians should move on to the next blog now.) A discussion which started on VE-Day on Facebook led to my discovery that I was not alone in my aversion to rabbit. To one of the many posts about Vera Lynn's ubiquitous rendition of "We'll meet again" I had added that in the days of meat rationing, the song title had been adapted by wags as "Whale meat again?". (On the only occasion that our mother had brought whale meat to the table, the family found it too tough to eat, exactly as this BBC respondent did, and we had great teeth in those days.) A further comment alluded to the fact that rabbit was not on the ration either, to which I replied that to this day I cannot eat rabbit, however nicely it is prepared, to which the other Facebooker responded that it was the same with her husband, clearly of the same generation as myself.

This psychological effect has little to do with the source of the meat, but more with the circumstances of having to eat it. I enjoy eating lamb - even more slow-cooked mutton when one can get it - but it was a different story for the late John Diamond. He could not stand sheep meat because it reminded him of his impoverished East End childhood when the smell of cheap lamb stewing was all pervasive.

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