I cheat sometimes.
Not on purpose. I cheat when necessity overcomes integrity. Necessity: to fuel myself when there is a lack there of. Necessity: to not offend or just when no one is looking. Necessity: because someone is looking. The thought process here abandons integrity and honor like a mother bird abandoning her offspring in the time the chick needs her the most simply because I ventured too close to the bush she had fashioned as a makeshift home among the foliage of my yard.
It is clearly shameful, regrettable, and (regrettably enough) satisfying in the moment of need. How could I bade disrespect to my butcher father when presented the pickled succulence of traditional St. Patrick’s Day corned brisket? That is his life’s work after all. Or, most recently, today in fact, decline the generous offer of a co-worker who was given two extra chicken tenders in her chicken tender basket meal from the cafeteria. The offer came with fries as well.
The abandonment of integrity through my partaking in carnivorous consumption is not necessarily despicable in itself, but considering I have been a vegetarian for a year and three months without cheating is where my conscious finds turmoil. If it were not for artificial cheese tasting like coagulated moisturizing lotion then both my girlfriend and I would be practicing vegans. My honor to her, for whom I have pledged my abstinence for sustenance of the living variety, has now fleeted. Then, presumably, the newly presented guilt of knowing the innocent chicken that is now giving me nourishment becomes self-evident through truly acknowledging familial foul abandonment. A perspective manifested subconsciously: either through her offspring being stolen from her or her offspring feeling abandoned as the white-gloved capitalist comes to snatch up soon-to-be capital leaving the chick without a mother, all whilst I made the conscious decision to abandon my integrity, much akin to the course of the life of poultry.
I could have mentioned to my co-worker that I was a vegetarian and that I was grateful for the offer, but necessity presented itself at the time in the form of not having eaten since the small peanut butter and jelly sandwich I had consumed six hours before.