The Token Hippie Friend


I should start by confessing that I am not actually a hippie.  While I am all for peace love and understanding I wear Dolce and Gabana sunglasses, shop at Target and have never ridden my bike to work.

I was surprised to hear myself introduced as the “token hippie friend.”  Sure, I was a strict organic vegan, kept my given family name, and our baby sleeps in bed with us, but come on, I stopped wearing flannel shirts in college and bathe almost every day.  My husband is a prep, I shop at Pottery Barn Kids, Janie and Jack and Nordstrom.  How much more mainstream can you get?  All right, all right, I know the answer to that.

The realization that I had a specific role in this group came when a girlfriend said “Well Jen, as I told my friend you’re our token Hippie friend.” I am confident enough to recognize that I contribute more to our friendship than what constitutes the label of token anything but it forced some self- reflection.

Ok, so I have a tendency toward disagreeing with the establishment, have let it slip after a couple of glasses of wine that deep down I am a conspiracy theorist and I have met my shaman.   I buy mostly organic, believe that the meat and dairy industries have insulted our intelligence by forcing their products on us and know that we have abused our environment so much that we have to supplement with vitamin D because we are fearful of exposing our skin to the sun.

But here is my struggle:  where does it end?  I have been a strict vegetarian for over 20 years.  I have never been a milk drinker and adopted a strict vegan diet over a year ago.  After my son was born I started buying only organic products.  The only knowing exception that I made was clothing.  My days became filled with almost obsessively seeking out and preparing items that would not “poison” my son.  It was a full time commitment- and I’m not kidding.   Life became such a chore.  Waking up in the morning left me feeling overwhelmed with the choices I would need to make for my family that day.   My husband is supportive of these choices though he is a meat eating, Walmart shopping, Advil-popping American.  He loves the grill and anything that can be put on it, swigs water from his 12 oz Poland Springs bottle after a run and  would have fed our son babyfood consisting of jarred meat.  So, this all-vegan, all-organic lifestyle is all-my responsibility.

I have no answers but I have lots and lots of opinions- mostly self taught and naïve.   And you lucky reader can bare witness to them all.  Welcome to my blog.

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