Thursday, 17 November 2011


Brawn, what does it mean? Solid, well defined pecs or guns, or describe Formula One. Engines that grunt with muscular strength and power. In actual fact, it could be all of the above, as well as a term used for flesh boiled or pickled. Put simply, the word signifies meat and muscle.

A great word if used to described ripped muscles. A human physique built up and developed. Used to identify meat in its animal form, this word is considered grotesque. Tearing into edible flesh is a ritual dating back to our earliest ancestors. This enjoyable act, (we are assured by TV chefs), continues to be popular. Do the public fully understand its origins? That the meat we eat shares the same basic anatomy? Acceptable to consume muscle and tissue, the same as us, when it's from a non-human being. Is any of this given a thought when it comes to eating?

Meat-eating has become a thrice-daily event for many people. A Western plus. An expectation. Meal deals and offers have made it so cheap, we no longer think it a luxury. Whereas before, we used to give thanks, now we take it for granted. Saying grace was part of the act. Gathered round a table, with heads bowed and holding hands, people would murmur in unison: For what we are about to receive, may the Lord make us truly thankful. I can't say I've personally done this many times in my life due to lack of patience. I normally cannot wait to tuck in. Agonizing to pause with a meal in front of you. Staring with intent, hands twitching to pick up the fork. My thanks for the food given instead by a full-bellied growl of satisfaction. I may not give thanks in the most appropriate way, but I echo this sentiment throughout the day. Breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Blessing food is undergoing a revival. A minute's silence to remove the taint that meat was once living. Is this enough or is it just a cover-up? A cover-up for guilt. Giving thanks is a brawn affirmation. A statement which reminds me of Sebastian, the crab, from The Little Mermaid. A character who flexes his skills with authority. Blessing meat may not be enough, but it's a muscle carnivores should strengthen and use.