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How to stay popular despite going vegan

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Going vegan for the animals is the right thing to do, but being unpopular is not an option. So when it comes to sharing your activism with friends and family members, some tactics are going to make you the hipster-darling of your squad, and some are going to make sure you aren’t included on Facebook event invites. Read on for ways you can stay vegan without imposing your strict lifestyle on others.

1) If someone tells you going vegan is so hard, agree. Feel free to list off how impossible it is for you to find a vegan tinted lip chap that’s your perfect shade, or about how few vegan options there are at McDonald’s. People aren’t interested in understanding how accessible veganism is, because it’ll make them question their choices. Just support their position and pretend the struggle is real.

2) When someone begins describing the succulence of the steak they’re eating, say “mmm” or “yummy.” You’ll frequently dine alongside people eating animal products, but there’s no reason to wince, explain their origin, or express your morals at any opportunity. Poking at your steamed carrots is proof enough that what you’re eating is just as good.

3) Omg, you have to laugh when someone makes a vegan joke! You’re easy going and laid back, so when someone slings an insult your way, be the loudest one to laugh at it. Taking the exploitation of animals seriously means you’re no fun. Show them you’re a hoot instead by telling this classic joke: How can you tell if someone’s vegan? Don’t worry, they’ll tell you! Follow up by telling them you’re vegan and asking if they get it.

4) Always let other people choose where you go out to eat. You know that no matter what, there’ll be fries or cucumber where they want to go anyway. Eating vegan isn’t inclusive for people who like to eat meat, so suggesting a juice bar is like telling them they’re wrong. Just always ask what they’re craving first, and put your needs and subsequently the needs of animals second.

5) It’s definitely a no-no to make any vegan inquiries in public. You wouldn’t want to make anyone uncomfortable by asking for ingredient lists or anything. When someone offers you a sample or any other sort of freebie (hello, makeovers at makeup counters), you’re allowed to not care if it’s vegan because you’re not buying it. Someone came up with “freegan” so we could all stay vegan without having to turn down the handouts of others, or embarrass our friends.

6) If you want to be a really good friend, you have to still like, comment, and retweet posts that include your friend’s purebred puppy, new fur lined winter coat, or wedding reception meat carving station. Look, they’re your friend and they’re never going to change, so you have to change to stay friends with them. Duh.

7) Never think too much about someone bringing non-vegan things into your home. When they bring in a slice of pepperoni pizza or a baggy of pre-cooked chicken, they’re not inconveniencing you. You want your home to be a welcoming space for social get-togethers, so welcome the things your friends care about, okay?

8) If you’ve got a vegan child or companion animal, stay loose on what they can and can’t have. People will bring gifts and treats for them and who are you to get in the way of the bond they’re trying to build with that person. Just turn around and let them share these special non-vegan moments regardless of how it contradicts your raising of them.

9) Eventually, your friends are going to tell you about the vegan things they get up to. Surprising, I know! So make sure you clap excessively when they buy a vegan bag over a leather one, or eat a salad once. Positive encouragement for not using animals once and awhile will help them go vegan in the long run. You can even consider rewarding them with non-vegan treats.

10) You might want to consider not going vegan at all if you want to be popular. I mean, you can still be an animal lover and be flexitarian so people have more opportunities to bond over using animals with you. Ricky Gervais is a pretty popular dude, so there’s no arguing with that.

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In our ongoing attempt to use parody to point out the obvious, we’d like to remind you that you shouldn’t skirt veganism for the approval of others. If the people around you don’t appreciate your morals, ethics, and choices, it might be a good time to find some new people to spend your energy on. After all, the growing popularity of vegan items from cheese to motorcycle jackets means it’s easier than ever to go vegan no matter what you enjoy, without sacrifice. And being a doormat for the unjust standards of society works against the change you’re making through your choices. Go vegan and help those around you go vegan.

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