what is vegan? what is not vegan?

words wtage

26th August 2018

i do not mean to write a list of things that are vegan and non-vegan.

there are loads of websites telling you what veganism is.

here is my thought on veganism.


i have been vegan for many years, though i do not know precisely how many years i have been.

since i was younger i ate fruit and vegetables a lot and ate less meat and fish as this was my family’s preference, or our faith.

i had school meals which contained animal products but there was always plenty of vegetables.


i was allowed not to eat i do not like at school, whilst many schools in japan do not allow their pupils to leave food, and this was perfect for me as i was a very much conservative fussy eater (and so am i still).

i remember i had an interview before i entered primary school and my mother next to me told the school headteacher that i did not eat rice.

it is unusual especially for people in japan, but i disliked rice.

the school headteacher told me that i should ‘practise’ eating rice.

i could not eat a lot when i was younger as i was too weak and too skinny, so there was no room for rice in my stomach.

i tried a mouthful and that was a huge first step.

i do not like the smell and taste of rice, also the texture of it.

i still do not like rice.


one summer, when i was around 3 years old, it was too hot and i could not eat what i call ‘normal’ food so i ate peaches a lot.

there were many peaches in the kitchen in that summer for some reason.

i basically grew up by eating peaches at that time.

since then i often eat fruit as a meal (a fruitarian!).

i still love peaches.


it was easy for me to become a vegan.

often people have a period of being vegetarian, then they go vegan afterwards.

i was not.

from the beginning i was a vegan.

i do not eat cheese, eggs, seitan or fake meat.

it would not make difference between being a vegetarian and vegan to me.

i have never tried vegan sausages.

i am a very very conservative fussy eater.


but veganism is not just about food, but my lifestyle.

i am an ethical vegan.

and i sometime choose gluten-free vegan food but this is not fundamental.


i do not drink alcohol, i do not smoke. but this is not about veganism, just my preference.

i do not have sugar even if it is brown. i have maple syrup or golden syrup. this is, again, my preference.


i do not wear leather or fur.

i do not own those in my wardrobe.


so am i completely a vegan myself?

this is questionable.


i use mobile phones, tablet, computer which have batteries and lcd screens. they are not vegan.

i have medication if necessary. they are not always vegan.

i have vaccines if necessary. i have had a few since i was younger certainly. they are not vegan.


are truffles vegan? very much questionable.

truffles themselves are indeed vegan but the process by which truffles are obtained is not.


do vegans eat ‘may contain’ food?

is it really vegan?


should i not have new fivers and tenners in my wallet as they are not vegan?

i love money.

but on a serious note, i do not use cash as much as possible.

99% of my transactions are made by card.

i know new bank notes are not vegan so i do not want them.


is working or socialising with non-vegans vegan? ludicrous.


is living with pets vegan?


would i die from hunger because i cannot have vegan food but there are non-vegan food in front of me?

i would, perhaps.


being an ethical vegan is sceptical yet it surely is possible to me.

i do not have to be perfect but i try to be a vegan as much as possible and practicable, therefore i am a vegan.

who wrote this?

wtage, an english-japanese bilingual linguist based in london, uk.

i am curious about human communication in which language plays a crucial role.

i am an avid writer with a creative mind.