Oh great, a sudden and unexpected crisis of conscience. Just what I needed.
There I was pushing my trolley around a supermarket as big as an aircraft hangar. Just another bovine shopper, grazing my way along the aisles being serenaded by bland pop music and heading for the refrigerated section where food that has been knocked down in price as it is going out of date resides. I noticed the shelves in this section were almost empty.
Then I looked at the bottom shelf and there is was. A corpse.
It was a whole salmon lying on it's own and looking totally out of place. There was a small amount of blood pooled around it's head in the shrink wrapping and I knew that no-one would buy this fish and that it would be dumped without ceremony in the bins around the back of the store. On the white shelf and under the glare of the electric lighting it just looked sad.
Don't get me wrong, I eat meat and fish and I don't go around assuming animals have the same emotions as people but it just seemed wrong all of a sudden. This fish had been taken from whatever waters it had lived in, left to gasp it's life out in the open air only for it to end up on the bottom shelf of the knock-down bin where no-one wanted it.
I don't now why this feeling suddenly hit me when I saw this poor dead fish but I remembered many years ago when I worked in a car polish factory with a bloke who had a part time job in a slaughterhouse. He used to come out with stories of using dead cow's udders like water pistols and spraying milk on his colleagues.
Or how sometimes pigs were still alive when they went into the flame jets that seared the bristles off their backs, or cows dropped alive into boiling vats because workers couldn't be bothered stunning them properly.
Now because of this fish I find myself considering vegetarianism. My wife has been vegetarian for 20 years and as such I eat plenty of vegetarian food so it shouldn't be too difficult. Then a little voice in my head starts whining about how nice pork pies are or needing animal protein for my weight training in the gym or that my stopping eating meat won't stop cruel morons tormenting animals out of boredom before they kill them.
But we all sort of know this stuff goes on and we choose to ignore it because we like the taste, I just don't know if I can carry on being complicit in this. So maybe I will give up meat, I mean I smoked for 25 years and managed to quit so meat should be a doddle.
What do you think.
Oh and if anyone thinks I am some sort of liberal, over-sensitive hippy they can fuck right off.