Yesterday I read an article called "25 things chefs never tell you," compiled from responses to a survey conducted by Food Network Magazine. Most of it, of course, is not actually surprising. For example: Unfinished bread baskets get recycled (I'm glad they don't waste it actually) and "vegetarian" food might not be 100% vegetarian. I can understand that some people would be pissed about the latter, but I generally don't bother to ask if something that appears vegetarian, like soup or risotto, contains any chicken stock; my food options are limited enough as it is. This makes things easier on the chef, right? Who "hate picky eaters"?
Well guess what, chefs hate that too: "Some of their biggest pet peeves: When customers pretend to be allergic to an ingredient, and when vegetarians make up rules, like 'a little chicken stock is OK.'" I thought it was maybe just one crazy chef who said that, but when I commented about it on Twitter, a chef named Brandon Chavannes responded "because you're not vegetarian, you're just difficult," suggesting that this really is a common annoyance.
So on the one hand, the vegetarian food may not be vegetarian. But if we say we're OK with that, then it's "Fuck you, you fucking hypocrite." Does this make sense to anyone? Also, I really don't see the hypocrisy in not wanting to order a hunk of meat, but not caring if a little meat juice from someone else's order dribbles on your fries. Most vegetarians do it for ethical reasons, not because they can't stand the taste or smell of meat. A little cross-contamination is inevitable in restaurants, but at the end of the week/month/life, you've eaten a lot fewer dead animals.
Even when I ate meat freely, 5+ years ago, I disliked this contemptuous attitude that some meat-eaters cop toward vegetarians. The very existence of vegetarians doesn't prevent you from eating meat. (If their existence prevents you from enjoying meat, you might have some unexamined hangups.) It's like being pissed about pacifism.