I found another one! This week’s interview is with someone I knew on Instagram (because I’m a stalker) before I knew her in real life (IRL, if you’re under 35). She’s funny, adorable, and she loves dogs so much that she’s kinda’ made them her coworkers. So, naturally, I assumed she’s vegan. But she isn’t! I was almost forced to eat crow when I found out. But I politely declined, of course.
Join me and let’s talk to this enigma about why she’s not vegan.
Please meet Courtney Byrd!
What is your name?
How long have you been a non-vegan?
I was born non-vegan, but became slightly less non-vegan in my early thirties (what?! she looks so young!) and after a few years went back to full-on non-veganism because I’m a lazy POS.
Why have you decided not to be vegan?
I stuck with pescatarianism for about two years, but realized I was replacing all of my protein sources with carbs. I felt morally superior, but physically, pretty crappy. Since starting standup, it’s been a lot tougher (for me, a lazy POS) to stick to a more strict diet. Not a lot of comedy clubs offer tasty vegan options, and what can i say, I LOVE FOOD.
If you had to take one step toward becoming vegan, what would it be and why only one?
I would stop eating beef again, no question. I mainly stopped in the first place because I know how big of an impact dairy and cattle farms have on the environment. I don’t eat it often, but I can definitely go without. Besides, Impossible Burgers are a modern day miracle, and while I don’t know what is in them to make them taste exactly like meat, I just don’t care.
Which fad diet or meat eating celebrity made you want to eat animals?
I look up to a lot of successful female comedians, like Beth Stelling, Annie Lederman, and Sarah Silverman, and they all RAVE about the chicken strips in divey comedy clubs, so that’s what I base all of my life choices on.
What vegan food do you fear you’re missing out on as a non-vegan?
I really like oat milk in my lattes and non-dairy ice cream. But I’m worried that the vegans are keeping all the really good stuff a secret because we haven’t joined their club yet.
Do you eat fish? You eat fish, right?
I would eat fish every day if cooking it didn’t stink up my entire studio apartment for a week. Fish have no feelings and you can’t convince me otherwise. If one more person tries to make me touch a live fish, I will call the authorities.
Are there any animals in your life, such as pets or funny neighborhood squirrels? Tell us a story about them.
I walk dogs and petsit for a living, so I’m always interacting with dogs throughout the day. Once I was walking my girl Izzy, a Goldendoodle (pictured), and she attempted to catch a crow. Except she actually succeeded. Dumb crow.
Izzy left the crow unharmed, but its murderous friends were NOT happy and they dive-bombed us both for an entire city block. We had birds bouncing off our heads, screeching at us from the trees. It was terrifying. We had to find a new route after that. The crows won.
What do you do for fun besides eating meat and dairy?
The majority of my spare time is spent sleeping, watching Gilmore Girls, or performing standup comedy. My dog walking adventures are referenced quite a bit (sorry, cat people!) in my act, but I also talk about murder if you’re into that sort of thing. True crime stories. Not doing the murdering.
Do you have any upcoming projects you want to plug?
I produce a monthly comedy show at Tacoma Comedy Club called Lady Bits. It’s an all-female showcase featuring local and visiting comedians. It’s a lot of fun working with all women, especially because all of the penis jokes are 100% accurate.
Make up a question of your own and answer it.
What’s your idea of the worst first date?
If one more person asks me to walk around Green Lake, their freakin body will be found bloated on the beach! Don’t ask a dog walker who, ya know, walks all day every day, to go for a nice leisurely stroll with you. I can guarantee you walk too slowly for my professional pace, and halfway around the lake we’ll wish the date was over and then you have the awkward decision of turning around the way you came or sticking it out alongside the date you just rejected to get back to your car. DON’T DO IT!! Oh, was this supposed to be a vegan-based question? My bad.
Song: “Run the World (Girls)” by Beyoncé
Recipe: Impossible BBQ Cheddar Burger (divey comedy clubs, take note!)
Photo of Courtney by: Kamryn Minch