Vegan restaurants may soon be serving up “macaroni and Gary” and “grilled Gary sandwiches.” That’s because, as Mashable reports, a group of vegans has started an online petition to rename vegan cheese “Gary.”
It all started when one cheese-loving Facebook user posted a message against what she saw as the mislabeling of vegan cheese. “If you’re going to be a vegan don’t call your vegan cheese BECAUSE IT’S NOT CHEESE!” she wrote. “[Some} ‘Vegan Cheese’ [is] made with COCONUTS. CHEESE IS NOT MADE WITH COCONUTS. Call it Gary or something don’t call it Cheese because IT’S NOT CHEESE!”
Instead of being offended by the absurd rant, vegans across the internet have embraced it, launching a tongue-in-cheek Facebook group called “It’s not Vegan Cheese, it’s Gary," and starting an official Change.org petition to rename all commercially sold vegan cheese “Gary.”
Currently, the group has more than 5000 members and the petition has received nearly 140 signatures out of a total goal of 200. For the most part, vegans seem to be gently poking fun at the original poster, embracing the idea of “Gary” as a fun and silly new name for non-dairy cheeses. The poster, meanwhile, has since apologized for the tone of her original rant (“I just really like cheese,” she explained), and expressed appreciation for all the Gary memes she inadvertently inspired.
Check out the Facebook rant that started it all, and some of our favorite “Gary” memes below.