A somewhat humorously tinged Facebook post from an Irish restaurant that took a swipe at vegan customers has led to a social media backlash from vegans all over the world, eventually leading the café to ban vegans entirely.
Back on August 13, Dublin’s The White Moose Café posted on Facebook, “ATTENTION VEGANS. Please do not waltz into our café with no advance notice and look at us as if we have ten heads when you realise that there aren't 50,000 items on our menu that suit your idiosyncratic dietary requirements. Our chef will be more than happy to prepare a number of dishes for you, but a little heads up in advance of your visit would be appreciated. Fair is fair like.” True, it was probably not the most sensitive post, or one that’s going to win you any international awards, but to be fair, the restaurant did offer to accommodate these customers, albeit in a bit of a backhanded way.
However, one riled-up vegan decided to take The White Moose’s post and run with it. “Absolutely disgusting manners and behavior,” she wrote. “[The restaurant thinks] it’s okay to call [vegans’] beliefs idiotic and belittle them online.” Whether she misread“idiosyncratic” as “idiotic,” doesn’t know the meaning of the original word, or simply swapped one for the other to help fuel her rage is unknown, but she had no trouble getting others behind her anti-Moose sentiment.
Soon, vegans everywhere were going after the café’s Facebook page, leaving negative comments and one-star reviews. Fed up with all the negative feedback, the owner, Paul Stenson, decided to do vegans one better, banning them entirely from his restaurant and making a tasteless joke that vegans who tried to enter would “be shot dead at point blank range” because “meat is murder, so it’s fair game if we murder humans as well as animals.”
Needless to say, that post from last week didn’t do much to quell the feud—in fact, it even encouraged some physical protests outside the café. Stenson’s continued attempts at humor however, have earned him plenty of carnivore supporters as well, who have helped The White Moose Café rack up over 13,000 five-star reviews, raising their overall rating on Facebook to a pretty solid 4.9 out of 5.
Over the weekend, Stenson followed up with a new post looking at the whole ordeal from the bright side: “I would like to thank the hundreds and thousands of vegans across the world for all the hard work they have been doing to promote our café over the past couple of days. Thanks to you guys, our café has gone viral in countries as far as New Zealand, Australia, America and Germany (to name but a few). It has made it onto the front page of sites such as Imgur, Reddit and Yahoo, and there are already at least 8 different Facebook pages (that I know of) dedicated to our café. If you were to put a monetary value on this kind of publicity, you would easily be talking a six-figure sum.”
See, vegans aren’t all bad, even if they are a little bit idiosyncratic—which, for the record, was never a bad thing to begin with. Interestingly, The White Moose Café just opened back on July 31. Whether all this coverage in such a short time speaks to Stenson’s genius or simply his talent for pissing people off around the world is up for debate.
[h/t The Daily Mail]