Vegan Like Me aims to profile fellow vegans, from all walks of life from everywhere in the world! We’ve all been beginners and I think its important for folks to hear people’s stories in order to motivate themselves to keep going. This feature is intended to do just that. If you are vegan and would like to participate, get in touch with me and I’ll be sure to send our questionnaire along to you.
Name: Bud Burdick
Where do you live? Brooklyn, NY
How long have you been vegan? ”Almost 6 years”
What inspired you to take on a plant-based (vegan/vegetarian) diet? ”My move toward a plant-based diet began a little over eight years ago. I was at a hardcore show and the Syracuse Animal Rights Organization was tabling, offering pamphlets and leaflets, and showing videos portraying the plight of animals. I later watched the film Meet Your Meat by PETA and was convinced that I needed to change. I immediately stopped consuming most animal products with exception to “cage free”, organic eggs and shrimp. Two and a half years later, after having eaten shrimp that smelled like bleach at a restaurant and looking more into the “cage free” industry, I decided to become vegan.”
What do you love most about being vegan? ”I love knowing that I do no harm to others. I love trying new foods, exploring those I am familiar with, and being part of an awesome community of caring, thoughtful individuals. I love the fast recovery I experience after exercising, and the fast recovery following my chemotherapy treatments as I am currently battling leukemia.”
What three items do you always have in your pantry?
“1) Peanut Butter – a staple for sandwiches and smoothies.
2) Oatmeal – often used in smoothies as well, or eaten hot or cold with dried fruit
3) Whole Wheat Pita – great with hummus, I buy the varieties with the fewest ingredients.”
What is your favorite vegan comfort food? “Foodswings” (Vegan restaurant in Brooklyn)
What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about taking on a plant-based (vegan) diet? “It is important to be open to try new things. Many vegan foods are different from the standard American diet. Explore the produce aisle, the internet, and local book stores for more options and ideas. Seek out like-minded people through Meetup.com groups or local vegetarian groups, and be prepared to answer questions. This means knowing why you are making this decision, and speaking on things that you know to be true. You will be questioned by friends, family, and many people you meet as to why you made the change. If you ever end up in a situation in which you feel “outnumbered” and are being lambasted with questions from non-vegans, offer to take down emails and send information at a later time.”
Do you find anything difficult about being vegan? “I do not.”
Any other comments you or words of wisdom you would like to add? “I have recently experienced life changing events and have documented much of my journey into veganism and through these times in my blog. I feel I have some good things to say and this is my outlet. Check it out: budburdick.com “Those who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it” -Chinese Proverb”
Thank you so much, Bud, for sharing your story. I highly suggest visiting his website, as I believe he offers a unique outlook as a vegan, and someone who has been dealt some pretty serious challenges… best of all, he does it with a smile. It can serve as inspiration to anyone – vegan or otherwise – to truly love and experience your life to the fullest. Thank you for such an inspirational perspective, Bud! Let’s high-five at the next Vegan Drinks, ok?