Thursday, September 15, 2005

Shrimp, yes. Dolphins, no.

"Mmmmmm. I can't wait to eat dolphins!"

This is what Fiona said after she and I were "talking" to Sophia...imitating her gleeful, high pitched squeals and babble. I mentioned that Sophia sounded like a dolphin, which prompted Fiona to think of eating them...hey, it was just before lunch time.

So, I say, well, we don't eat dolphins. (Obviously, this is really confusing.) Of course, she asks me why. Why don't we eat dolphins? Well, honey, besides the fact that talking about eating dolphins makes mommy uncomfortable, it opens up that whole "Why do we eat some animals and not others?" It's not socially acceptable, for good reason, in my humble opinion, to eat dolphins. They are intelligent and sort of like pets. We don't eat cats and dogs (ok, I mean the USA, ok?). So, then, we only eat animals that aren't smart? Hm, I don't think that's right either. Maybe dolphins just don't taste good. This is all going through my head very quickly while I try to think of an answer.

We had just pulled into the parking lot (for lunch) and I was tired and it was raining, so I think I said something succinct like, "We just don't eat dolphins".

Oh well.


Lone Star Ma said...

Yes, that's kind of a toughie (laughing maniacally).

Veloute said...

Ha ha! I knew you would like that.

Alex said...

Hee hee. Never underestimate the power of the occasional "Just Because" answer. ;)

Oh, man. I want to see squealing-dolphin Sophia! And her cunning older sister.

Walter Jeffries said...

*grin* I think your final answer, basically it is a convention, is the best answer. We have a farm. Most of the animals are food animals. We also have a cat and eight dogs (livestock guardians, herding, etc) and those don't get eaten. Our daughter Hope, who is two, understands the difference. In fact, as young as a year old she would sign "silly" at the mention of eating a dog or cat where she understood and loved the idea of eating pigs and chickens (yum! bacon & eggs & meat!) We dont' raise vegetarians! :-) The interesting thing was we had not sat down and explained it but she had just picked up the difference. Now, she has asked the question about "are those eat animals or no eat?" for things that are unfamiliar to our environment, like Sophia and her dolphins. :)
West Topsham, Vermont

Veloute said...

Hey Walter, thanks for your comment! Growing up on a farm, I guess Hope will naturally "get" where her food comes from. I think that is important, and we do the best we can regarding that...I am :) at Hope signing "silly"... Fiona used to sign when she was younger and we are currently trying to perk her interest in that again as we try to teach Sophia about signing...