Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance

The Eye of the Red Snapper


Redsnapper.jpg by Paulk via Wikimedia Commons

Lent – the forty days between Mardi Gras and, Easter – is the only time, so far, I’ve been able to be a true vegetarian. Not vegan (I still eat cheese – still working on that) but vegetarian – no beef, no pork (the easy part for me) and no chicken or fish (the harder part.)

My husband respects my goals on this so much, that he voluntarily doesn’t eat “red meat” at home and doesn’t eat much meat in my presence, besides chicken and fish. A few weeks before lent, he asked me if I minded if he brought home some red snapper someone at work had offered him. Since I’ve occasionally indulged in seafood (except during lent) I said okay. As a tomboyish youth, I took pride in cleaning fish myself, but this time, I was happy to leave that job up to my husband. The night being cold, he scaled the fish and cut off the heads in the kitchen. The smell was not pleasant.

Then I saw it – The eye of the red snapper, staring at me, from my own kitchen sink. The eye’s blank look confirmed that it was dead. But it was still shiny. The fish had been frozen until it thawed in my sink. Could the eye possibly still see me?

I think I’m going to get better at this vegetarian thing. It’s about time. I’ve been working on it for about 40 years. Not eating cows and pigs has been easy. And after watching enough videos of what happens to baby chicks on factory farms….. well… I think I’m done with chicken. Now the eye of the red snapper has given me an extra push toward being a true vegetarian. Even though the taste of its well prepared flesh was flaky and mild, I didn’t enjoy it as much as I would have, if I had not seen the eye.

On the eve of lent, during my church’s annual Shrove (aka Fat) Tuesday oyster roast, I only ate three oysters – well done and dry, not slurpy. Oysters don’t have eyes, but I wonder: Are they still alive when the heat of the roasting fire forces their shells open?

Sometimes I wish I didn’t think about such things.

Now, for a somewhat humorous, yet honest, look at this issue:


It’s about progress, not perfection.

(The red snapper image is by “Paulk” via Wikimedia Commons)


Author: JoAnna

An open minded, tree-hugging Jesus follower, former counselor, and life-long lover of animals, I'm returning to my creative roots and have published my first book: Trust the Timing, A Memoir of Finding Love Again as well as the short version: From Loneliness to Love.

14 thoughts on “The Eye of the Red Snapper

  1. Hear, hear… it is when we think about “these things” that we heighten our awareness. And make conscious choices.

    I have always found it fascinating that some people choose to cease eating fish during Lent yet it was fish and loaves that fed the masses.

    To progress. πŸ™‚

    • Hi, Eric! It’s nice to see you back on WP! About the fish and loves, I’m thinking they didn’t have anywhere near as many options as most of us do today. I’m so thankful for those options!

  2. that is a Vermillion Snapper

  3. Fair enough and I wish you all the best! I have been a vegetarian by choice almost all my life (I guess I was 4 when I “gave up” meat) and I have never regretted it. Apparently I am missing out a lot as per my non-vegeterian friends but I am perfectly happy in my milk and cakes. Good luck!

  4. I’m sure glad my hamburger doesn’t have eyes. Thanks for sharing.

  5. Yeah, I have a hard time with how animals are treated. I was a vegetarian for 12 years, until I married my husband who really is a meat and potatoes kind of guy. We at least get our meat from a farm that we know, and they are treated well. Still…I swim with really cool fish, so they are my friends and I can’t eat many kinds because they are over-fished, and so eating becomes an issue (I would put that in italics, but can’t do that on comments…which is too bad) Sometimes it’s fun to just go on and on.
    You are very funny, JoAnna, as well as interesting and good hearted. The video was hilarious.
    Have a great weekend!

    • Getting your meat from a farm where you know the animals are treated well is commendable, because killing an animal that’s lived close to a natural life, is way better than contributing to the suffering on factory farms. On a lighter note: Thank you for such a warm compliment, Mary. I’m glad you enjoyed the video and that you get my attempts at humor – something I’ve been wanting to cultivate.

  6. Pingback: How Not to Waste Food: Eat Leftovers, Compost, Share with Dogs – Anything is Possible!

  7. I like the last part of it’s about progress and not perfection. Enjoyed the post. We call Saturdays at our house salmon Saturdays because after singing at church, we come home to a quick and healthy meal of broiled salmon. I like it plain with lemon. While I seldom have red meat these days, we do eat lots of fish and poultry. I love my vegetables but not enough to eat them only with no meat. Happy writing!

Feel free to comment!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s