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Vegan Fan Mail

by Dear Jon
April 15, 2008

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Dear Jon,

It's been three years since you went to Germany and I didn't know you were a Vegan.

Vegan Canadian

Dear Can,

I didn't know I was a Vegan either. That article, published April First, was written as an April Fool's joke. I'm still a gun-loving, meat-eating midwestern Yankee. But I dig Canadians, having spent a few years in Saskatchewan about two hundred miles (300 kilometers) north of the "now it's too stupid cold" zone. I can even dig vegetarian Canadians. If we ever meet let's agree to a popcorn party!

When I was inspired to write the April First hoax article, I debated bringing Jon Deer out of the cold. Jon Deer had surfaced on the Partial Observer before Dear Jon went to Germany. I decided to leave Jon Deer in the cold. But if the Partial Observer readership begins to demand Jon Deer's signature venue, the "Tragic Limerick," I will see if I can track him down.

If you're not sure what a "Tragic Limerick" is, here is an example of one I received from him in a birthday card dropped off at my home without a return address.

On His Arrival at the Age of 39

On that birthday I turned 39,
I thought of how aging fine wine
is left in the cellar--
how much like this fellar!
Collecting dust, I contemplate the grave.


Dear Jon,

Do you limitedly define Vegan as one who does not eat venison, organ meat, or octopus? or will you also release the occupants of all of those turkey barns that are important to the Indianhead's livelihood?
How soon will you extend your campaign to the beef slaughterers of Nebraska?

Dear Unsigned,

I unlimitedly define my Veganism as one who declares myself meat-free on April First, and everyone else who believes me I limitedly define as gullible. Open that article again and try reading the first letter of every paragraph going down the left side of the screen.

There are actually some meats I do not eat. "Organ meat" would be, I take it, like chilled monkey brains, or cow's tongue, or liver. Those are not on my menu. And I am not interested in sea-food of the squid variety.

I am not all that adventuresome as a gourmet. I ate a rabbit once; it tastes like beef with little bones. To my knowledge I have not eaten squirrels, possums, or dogs. By the way, out of political sensitivity to meat-lovers like myself, please do not refer to "beef slaughterers" but to "beef ranchers."

I am not an adventuresome hunter either. It's not that I dislike guns. In fact, I love guns. I love guns a little too much, which is why I don't own any. When I have a rifle I am very impatient to shoot something. Hunting is about patience. Hunting is also about being up early and, in some seasons, being very cold and staying very patient while being very cold.

In warmer climates, there are snakes that might not like you crouching behind their bush waiting for game. I hate snakes and I hate bugs and I hate miserably cold weather. Generally  the "outdoors" are better left to themselves, as far as I'm concerned. I like to stay inside. I satisfy my hunting instincts at the Super Market, where I purchase the meat already cleaned and cut.

I love guns the way I love motorcycles. I really want to have one, but I know that owning one means needing to know a lot of stuff about proper maintenence, and it also means spending more time outdoors than I really care to. When it comes to maintenence manuals and patience on a hunting trip and waiting under an overpass with my bike while the rain blows over, I have to admit I'm happier reading a good novel.

I want guns and motorcycles as toys, not as responsibilities. My dream is that after Dear Jon books top the best-sellers I will be able to hire a valet who will manage all those things for me.

"Pembrose, I've fired the .44 today. Please clean it and lock it away, and then look on-line for a new lawn gargoyle. Oh, and I heard a funny noise as I was idling the Honda this morning. Look into that, will you? By the way, my wife was expecting me to have the dishes done before she got home this afternoon."

"I will see to it, sir. These socks on the floor, sir, shall I return them to the chest of drawers or drop them in the hamper?"

"The hamper please. Where is my blasted remote?"

"It's next to your knee, sir. It's labeled ‘TV.'"

"Pembrose, I was lost without you."

"You're very kind, sir. And by the way, my name is Ed Carlson."

What kind of life would that be without any meat?  Miserable. You might be able to shoot lawn gargoyles, but you can't very well EAT them, can you?

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