Thursday, August 21, 2008

Shark's Fin and Moral Ambiguity

I remember a particularly vivid image in a documentary I saw ten or so years ago where a fisherman catches a shark, slices off its fin and throws the shark back to sink, rudderless, to the bottom of the deep black sea. I vowed, after seeing this troubling image, to do my part for the sharks and to avoid eating their fins.  I was successful, until last night. 

Behold, shark's fin soup, in all its glory.

The venue to test my shark loving integrity was a food court somewhere in Happy Valley, which was said to have really good seafood (or so proclaimed by the locals and Anthony Bourdain). I was hungry, the shark's fin soup came first, and perhaps in my slightly sentimental state of mind (we are leaving Hong Kong in a week and will be gone for at least a year), I sampled the delicious local delicacy. 

After dinner, I went through a minor moral crisis - do I lack integrity when it comes to food choices? Am I a food opportunist with flexible principles? 

Then I remembered foie gras, blue fin tuna, kobe beef. 

I am carnivore, hear me roar.

(FYI though, I don't think I'll be eating shark's fin anytime soon. Aside from the fact that we'll be in Europe, where I can safely assume they don't sell shark's fin at local markets, I don't get the flavor of shark's fin. Maybe its just me.)

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