"You cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will. War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out." - William Tecumseh Sherman

Name: The General
Location: Sacramento, California, United States


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Tuesday, March 15, 2005
  My Knife and Steel (or, What I Do To Pay the Bills)
In honor of Meryl Yourish's International Eat an Animal for PETA Day, I thought I would blog about my modest contribution to the day. I probably won't be eating beef or pork on IEAPD, maybe some salmon or meatballs though. But in the real world (as opposed to the Blogosphere) I play a much more pivotal role in this wonderful "holiday".

I am one of the men who makes International Eat an Animal for PETA Day possible. Five (sometimes six!) days a week, I strap on my scabbard with my three knives (6", 8" and 12"), my handy steel (for keeping an "edge" on the blade) and my chain-mesh glove. In the wee hours of the morning, while most of you are starting to shave, I enter a cold room, and begin to work my magic.

Cutting meat today is a very different profession from the old days. In olden times (say, 30 years ago), most stores received the whole carcass of a cow, and had to engage in the age old process of "breaking" the beef. Thankfully, this tough and strenuous job is now parceled out to various companies, and I get to deal with "block-ready" beef (or pork, or lamb); essentially, all I have to do is trim off undesirable tissue, and gracefully cut a presentable steak or roast. Much easier on the body than moving a 150-350 pound carcass.

It isn't the most glamorous line of work, but it is fun. Each piece of meat presents a unique challenge - how to process it, and end up with a beautiful package that I would proudly stamp my name upon. One of the most fulfilling things about this line of work is the pride I take in it, and the compliments I receive from my customers. Many of them buy meat exclusively from the company I work for.

And thus I have a particularly rancorous antipathy for the animal rights crowd, and their most conspicuous member, PETA. I proudly declare my endorsement of this tasty day.

As a culinary expert and overall meat aficionado, my recommendation for the day for steak lovers is a boneless ribeye steak - my personal favorite, tender and full of flavor. For pork lovers, try a nice center cut bone-in loin chop; be sure not to cook it too long, pork can dry out quite easily! And for the truly cruel and savage (i.e., lovers of lamb), lamb chops are always nice, maybe a nice rack of lamb.

Lastly, for those of you with a slight tinge of guilty feelings, forget about it! If you don't buy the steak, someone else will. Trust me, the amount of meat I sell in one day would boggle your mind. At best, you're a drop in the bucket. Besides, they're only animals.

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