Friday, December 26, 2008

Raw Food In St. Pete.

photo from the St. Petersburg Times

Leafy Greens Cafe is a raw food and vegan establishment in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida.

My friend Gina alerted me several weeks before my annual sojourn to St. Petersburg, Florida that a raw food restaurant had opened its doors in the downtown area.

"I don't buy it," was my response. 

St. Petersburg, deep in the heart of Florida, is not known for its celebration of healthy living. We Southerners tend to like things dead, deep-fried, gutted, battered, glazed, hickory smoked, filleted, corpuscular, and bloody. 

"It's true!" she exclaimed. "And it's fucking good!" she added excitedly. She had been down to visit her father recently, and had eaten at the restaurant every day, at least once a day. 

Now, Gina, a friend I've had since the early '90s, is one of the few people I know who shares my absolute affinity for trying the most esoteric, bizarre, costly, time-consuming, or downright perverted forms of veganism. 

She was famous back in the day for her homemade rejuvelac and her multiple jars of sprouts and nut pastes and butters, all of which she would consume happily while emitting random "mmm-MMM!"s and "God DAMN, this shit is good!"s. 

At the time, I found her raw food penchant to be a bit too strange - I was relatively new to vegetarianism and had not yet teetered over into complete and utter veganism. 

Oh, I tried vegan foods, but back then - when something said "Vegan" on it - it was pretty much guaranteed to taste either like composted coffee grounds or unwiped ass. Things have improved markedly over the past decade-plus, and now a vegan can eat things that taste absolutely amazing without putting too much effort into it. 

Over the years, I realized that veganism was for me, not just to help animals (though that was the primary reason leading to my decision), but people and the environment as well. Finally, I decided to try raw food, first at Cru in Los Angeles, then at my old New York standby joints - Westerly and Lifethyme - and finally, at Jill's in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn.

Gina had come to visit, and she wanted to try Jill's. We went there, and we tried each and every one of those God Damn desserts, sounding like hogs at a trough, yodeling out from time to time with joy - "Oh my god, this is so FUCKING GOOD!" and "Jesus, can you believe this shit is raw?!?"

But all of that is really beside the point. You expect to find weirdo shit like that in New York and Los Angeles. 

We're talking about St. Petersburg, the home of Ted Peters Smoked Fish House and more Bob Evans than you can count. We're talking about a town that prides itself on its many BBQ restaurants that use pigs in aprons and chef's hats as their mascots. 

She and I made plans in advance to go to Leafy Greens Cafe (at 409 Central Avenue) when I got home. Nestled in the downtown area next to the old Kress Department Store and in the space where the old McCrory's was (I got some Urkel-O's cereal in that McCrory's in 1994... gross), this place was about as unassuming as a place can possibly be. I was very excited. 

The owner, who came over and talked to us while we were waiting for our food, had an interesting story regarding her raw food choice:
As a Raw Foodist (that’s what we are called), I am living proof that eating a vegan diet does wondrous things to a person’s health. 

In early 2007, I was diagnosed with Systemic Lupus, which is a degenerative immune system disease. I was told that, without treatment, I could die in five years. 

This is a genuine wake-up call for anyone! I began a raw food diet the next day. I bought a small cookbook but found that the recipes were horrible—the food was pureed in a blender and had no flavor or texture. My husband, Doug, and I almost gave up but because of my health (and because I had purchased a week of food for the raw food venture), we decided to purchase another cookbook that was highly recommended online (“RAW the uncook book” by Juliano.

After one meal we were hooked! The food was wholesome and amazing! In four months, my blood was totally transformed and the doctor released me saying that he could find no sign of any illness! 

After my amazing experience, I decided that I had an obligation to introduce as many people as possible to the delicious vegan food we love and tell anyone who is willing to listen about my near-miraculous healing!
She was a lovely woman, clearly very passionate about her food and lifestyle choice. 

I ordered: 

  • mango soup - "This is my daughter Joanne's invention! Mango, coconut, lemon, and a bit of nut milk pureed and topped with chunks of mango and shredded coconut. Delish! Eat it for breakfast, lunch or dinner!"

  • The Real Deal - "The first time I had this onion bread was at the Grass Root, a raw and vegan organic restaurant in Tampa. I was blown away! Our sandwich is served on our delicious homemade raw onion bread and stuffed with raw cashew hummus, chopped lettuce, guacamole, sprouts, and halved grape tomatoes."

  • I also had a raw chocolate, peanut butter and banana smoothie. 

    Now, to say that this food was delicious is not doing it justice. It was just plain amazing. That raw onion bread - however the hell she made it - will haunt my dreams until the day I die. It was oh so good.

    So good, in fact, that I went back the next day and ordered the same thing (I tend to do that - I know I'd be a better reviewer of hippie establishments if I'd sample their supply, but I can't help it. I loved that onion bread and I wanted it again, god damn it). 

    Gina and I took a confirmed non-vegan, meat-eating friend of ours there. He got the "Not-tuna sandwich" and he exclaimed that it was completely delicious. 

    Gina, on an "all-fruit" binge for the day, decided to have the "Banana Blast" - "This absolutely delectable dish is made from bananas, chopped nuts and pure vanilla bean and topped with berry sauce garnished with fresh fruits and homemade chocolate shavings! WOW!" Wow is right... I tried that motherfucker and wished I had ordered my own!

    Basically, what I'm trying to say is two things - 1) I am baffled, proud and amazed that my hometown has gotten progressive enough that raw food restaurants can thrive in it, and 2) I am glad that this particular raw food restaurant serves really good, dazzlingly delicious food. 

    Go there and try it! You'll be very happy you did.

    (Read a full review of Leafy Greens from the St. Petersburg Times here)

    Tuesday, December 23, 2008

    Home for the Holidays.


    I'm not known for my patience, or for my tact. So how can it be possible for me to convey to my egregiously ignorant family the ins and outs of WHY I became vegan in the first place? Though they tolerate my behavior (and in some cases actually go out of their way to accommodate it) they in no way pretend to understand or care why I'm doing it. 

    Comments like, "I just wish you'd eat dairy and eggs. It would be so much easier," and "Vegetarian's fine - but why vegan?" come and go on a regular basis. 

    Now, I know my family. And I know that if I were to start to talk to them about crowded, inhumane conditions in factory farms, the fact that these farms are major contributors to Global Warming, the detrimental effects dairy and meat have on the human body, that we are the ONLY SPECIES on the face of the planet that steals other species' baby formula and consumes the nasty, foamy shit as adults, and that little tiny fact that the subjugation of species for our pleasure is just plain wrong - well, they would just tell me to shut up. 

    "I don't want to hear it," my mother has said. Or, "I don't care - when I want a hamburger, god damn it, I'm going to have a hamburger!" Another statement of wisdom. 

    This more baffling exchange happened just yesterday. I was telling my family that tuna are going to be extinct in five years due to gross overfishing and human greed (nice Holiday Talk, I know, but it came up somehow). "But tuna tastes good," my niece said. Now THAT I could handle, because she was just being sassy. But then - THEN - we went to lunch at a primarily vegetarian restaurant and what does my father order? A fucking tuna sandwich. 

    I know they're not doing this crap to be vindictive or horrible and that those who are active in progressive movements must be ready to face many roadblocks toward their goal of success, but shit. If I can't even talk to my family about this without being ridiculed, how the hell am I going to talk to anyone else? 

    People know that Global Warming is barreling down on us and is going to destroy our planet. They talk about it in dire terms. They carry their little post-consumer-waste bags and drag their groceries and other goods around in them. They wear their little green activism t-shirts and buttons and such. But they just won't give up meat and dairy - the single most meaningful and lasting act they could POSSIBLY do in order to save this planet from impending chaos, horror and doom. Saying it on a t-shirt doesn't do a DAMN thing if you don't follow it up with action.

    Then there's also the fact the grain we grow to feed our livestock in factory farms could solve the world hunger crisis many times over. But we don't care, damn it. We want those Steak-ums!

    Why is it so ingrained in our heads that eating meat is acceptable? I can guarantee that if 3/4 of the people who blithely cram hot dogs and ham and beef stick and hoagies and pepperoni down their throats were confronted with the gruesome reality of the meat industry, they would swear off meat immediately (just a little example - did you know that factory farm cows, vegetarians by nature, are forced to consume "enriched" grain that has been "enriched" with the guts of other animals, including cows?). 

    My resolution will be to gently, kindly figure a way to talk to people about why eating meat is destroying the earth. Will I be able to do it? History says "no." But I have to try.


    Sunday, December 21, 2008

    The True Face of Fur.

    Here is what people who wear fur REALLY look like:


    Animals' skins weren't meant for people to wear. It turns out most people - even those who defy logic and actually parade around in these garish shrouds of death, decay and suffering - know that.

    I have an anti-fur button on my backpack from a Friends of Animals anti-fur event at the Jivamukti Yoga School in Manhattan.

    Now, given the increasing number of shameless cunts who have decided that fur is okey-dokey, I've kept this button on my backpack as a less aggressive form of protest than, say, dumping paint on them (though I have to admit that would be much more satisfying). 

    Miraculously, I have seen many people, after peeking at my little button, attempt to obscure their fur coats, either behind their husbands, behind packages, by folding them inside out, or any other manner of ways that don't work. 

    What does this say to me? It tells me that these selfish twats are fully aware that their coats are ugly, inhumane, horrifying, and the ultimate article of greed. It says to me that they know right from wrong - they just don't care. At least not enough to actually separate themselves from their need to feel socially superior by wearing dead animals.

    Fur as fashion is dead, in more ways than one - making people who cling to this grotesque display of superficiality feel guilty is not only fun, it's just what they deserve.

    Thursday, December 18, 2008

    Second Annual Douche Alert - Elizabeth Hurley.

    Should read, "What becomes a SOULLESS WHORE most?"

    I know this isn't news to those of you in The Compassionate Set.  

    But, I didn't know about Elizabeth Hurley's inability to separate monetary paychecks from karmic ones - that is, until I looked at the website for Blackglama.

    It saddens me to see such a seemingly attractive person doing such hideously unattractive things.  It really does. But... I'm going to have to go ahead issue the following statement:

    Elizabeth Hurley is the recipient of the Second Annual Douche Alert Award.  Congratulations, Elizabeth Hurley, for proving to the world that you care more about money than compassion, the environment, and a world free of suffering for ALL living beings.

    You look like an asshole draped in all those little dead animals. No, wait. You don't look like an asshole... you ARE an asshole.

    * * *

    Blackglama's logo is, "What Becomes a Legend Most?"

    Well, shit heads - I can tell you what becomes a heartless pig most, and that's wearing one of your "world's finest natural ranch-raised mink" coats.


    The only things that look good in minks are MINKS. People who feel that it is a-okay to strip these little animals of their fur so they can satiate some ASININE need to increase their status are downright deplorable human beings. They're proving they aren't worth the air they're stealing from the rest of us.

    Fur is an antiquated, barbaric, loathsome, and heinous fashion accessory. Those who continue and approve of its use are guilty not only of murdering countless thousands of animals but also of POLLUTING THE PLANET needlessly. All so some fat cunt can "look good" at the opera.

    Given fur's recent inexplicable and grotesque increase in popularity, it looks like I'm going to have to issue a LOT of these Douche Alerts.

    Get ready, y'all. When the fur comes out of storage, Ye Olde Pompous Vegan gets PISSED THE FUCK OFF.

    Fuck you, Elizabeth Hurley. Fuck you.

    Friday, December 12, 2008

    Dirt Candy. Unless You Like Supporting Cretins, Stay Away.

    Dirt Candy. What is it, and why does it sound so thoroughly unappealing?

    Why, it's a vegetarian restaurant in the east village. Its egregiously stupid "trying too hard to be cool" name would be enough to turn anyone off, but there's more - it is owned by, from what I can gather, one of the most unpleasant and adversarial vegetarian chefs on the planet.

    Now, I like supporting vegetarian places, even if they're NOT vegan. They generally have at least one or two things on their menu that will accommodate "weirdoes." However, after reading this self-important and just downright rude shit, I am turned off.

    In several recent interviews, this woman, Amanda Cohen, has made it be known that she thinks most vegetarians are "weird" and that vegetarian restaurants are "terrible" (because, she claims, they don't have "real chefs" - they have people who are into "lifestyles").

    To top it all off, she isn't even a vegetarian. She eats fish. Why not stay true to yourself and open a restaurant that openly and honestly does what you are doing under the guise of "vegetarianism"? Instead of insulting the lifestyles and ideals of the people you're attempting to cater to, why not just serve steak and get it over with?

    Here are some questions and answers from her recent interview in The Feedbag:
    Amanda, what’s the deal with Dirt Candy? What’s the difference between it and other vegetarian restaurants? Is there one?

    Here’s the thing: these are real dishes in a real restaurant. I’m not trying to convince anybody not to eat meat. I want normal diners to come in say, you know what? I’m not missing the meat. I’m using plenty of butter, using plenty of cream. So maybe one night someone can eat without meat; it’s actually very traditional.

    The thing is, though, that vegetarian restaurants are always terrible.

    Always! They’re horrible. Horrible! And you know why? Because they don’t have real cooks. The people who cook there have no culinary background; with this kind of food, you really have to know how to cook. If you don’t, it’s going to be awful. And it is.

    They’re more ideologues than cooks, the same way the people who eat there have philosophical baggage instead of wholesome appetites. So what’s the point? Is it a health thing at Dirt Candy?

    No! Look, there are lots of vegetarians who don’t care about their health. Look at India. It’s partially religious, but mainly, it’s how they grew up. I’m not Indian, but it’s how I like to eat. I just enjoy eating it, and that’s how I cook.
    So if you go to this restaurant, you can learn to be a self-important asshole and get fat at the same time! Let's go!

    More:
    That doesn’t sound so bad! So it’s not only weirdos who come in to eat there?

    Unfortunately, I get a lot of weirdos. But we’re not a weird restaurant.

    And from another interview on Gothamist:
    So taking the premise that most vegetarian restaurants are say, making menu choices based on a lifestyle diet instead of being adventurous with food, what is it about Dirt Candy that sets it apart?

    I think there are two differences. One, we do use dairy. Cheese, dairy, eggs, all that. That’s a huge difference. And then, also, I think our food is much more focused. We have a focal point on vegetables. That’s what I’m celebrating here. Other vegetarian restaurants are much more international, all encompassing, all over the place. Their focus is vegetarian food, or I guess I would say vegan food. My focus is vegetables. I get to be a lot more eccentric because I only have this one thing I do; it gives me these parameters to work within. Whereas if I was at another vegetarian restaurant, I could be like, I’m doing some Chinese food, I’m doing Italian food and I can do anything I want with it, and it’s so much broader. It’s almost like the difference between a really good diner and a fish restaurant. The diner probably does do some fish but it’s not going to do it as well as the fish restaurant.
    I know in this time of global warming, when we've discovered that raising animals for meat, dairy and eggs contributes immensely to the destruction of our planet through climate change and grain production, it's whimsical and witty and charming to "make fun of the weirdoes" - but guess what, lady. Like it or not, you're adding to the problem with your fatty butter-and-cream-and-eggs menu. 

    Oh. And then there's that whole cute little issue of farm animals living in horrid conditions and being treated miserably for their entire lives while entitled creeps open quirky little bistros and insult those of us who are trying to do something about it...

    Dirt Candy: this is one weirdo you can count on never, ever showing up at your shame barn of a restaurant.

    Monday, December 8, 2008

    Douche Alert...


    It's our first annual Douche Alert, y'all! (They'll probably come way more frequently than that, but "first annual" sounds so fantsy, we just couldn't resist).

    Douche Alert #1 goes to Kid Rock. He's a dipshit, he's ugly, he's stupid, he's a brawler, he's entered Pamela Anderson, and he loves to wear fur.

    How much does he love it?

    Well, to quote an article posted by our friends at Ecorazzi - the Green Gossip Site, "My biggest extravagance is fur coats - I’ve got every kind of animal in my wardrobe."

    What does that tell Ye Old Pompous Vegan about Kid Rock? It tells us that Kid Rock is bereft of moral value, a cum dumpster of selfishness and vanity.

    Kid Cock goes on to state that he wants a "war" with PeTA. Just try it, moron. If you think you'll be able to defeat an organization KNOWN for its psychotic, rabid devotion to animal rights, you're just plain wrong. I don't defend PeTA's often infantile ways, but I'm going to enjoy watching this shit unfold.

    How Pamela Anderson, PeTA spokesperson and vehement animal rights activist, let this braindead douchedrip into her velveteen netherfolds is beyond us here at Ye Olde Pompous Vegan. Perhaps she hadn't tapped into this particular tragic hobby of his at that point.

    Whatever the case, Kid Rock - and those like him who insist on wearing the skins of animals that were raised in horrible conditions, neglected, possibly actively tortured, and then put to a horrible death just so some materialistic, status-seeking assholes could "feel better" about themselves - just plain old needs to fuck off, like his career did years ago.

    Sunday, November 30, 2008

    S-U-S-H-I


    Jesus Christ. Pompous yuppies and people trying to be "cultural," read up - this shit is sad and scary:
    If an army marches on its stomach, then the key item in the kit bags of the Roman legions that conquered southern Europe about 2,000 years was dried bluefin tuna. But having survived the demands of the Roman conquest, the species — each of which can weigh as much as 1,500 pounds and live as long as 40 years — might finally have met its match in the contemporary global appetite for sushi.

    If environmentalists and marine scientists are right, the world's remaining stocks of bluefin tuna, 90% of which are in the Mediterranean, could be on the verge of extinction. Says Alain Fonteneau, a marine biologist for France's government-run Institute for Development Research in Montpellier: "If we do nothing, in five years we will fish the last bluefin tuna."

    read the rest here.
    I don't know about you, but I'm pretty horrified by this particular snippet of news. An entire species decimated because of sushi?!? Simply and positively disgusting. 

    I can guarantee you that no one is going to do a god damn thing about this, either. Oh, I've heard the arguments before. "I understand the concern, but I just love it too much. I can't give it up," or "So what? It's just a fish," are things people say. Yes, for real. So, we might as well say goodbye to tuna. People are far too selfish and far too stubborn to give up one tiny thing that would make a change. 

    Sacrifice is the only way to make things work - I hope people will pick up on that sooner rather than later. Here is one perfect and urgent example of what sacrifice could do for the world.

    Monday, November 17, 2008

    Sodey.


    by Dimples Doublefist

    I used to be one of those people who poo-pooed soda--figuratively. My step-dad growing up worked for Coca Cola, but there was no carte blanche soda drinking in our house; in fact, I was hardly ever allowed to have soda--only on special occasions. Thus, I never really acquired a taste. Plus, the one fear my mother really did instill in me: pop will make your teeth rot out.

    When Chop't, the salad place, opened its doors several months ago, I started ordering their lime seltzer; I was instantly in love. Having never been a Perrier drinker, Chop't's house-brand soda, Boylan Vintage Soda Pop and Seltzer, is the bomb. But Boylan only started the addiction.

    My new favorite soda is IZZE-esque. It's the -esque part that's important: there's only a hint of sweetness. It's the love child of premium seltzer and natural soda, so it's both refreshing and slightly naughty. A whole bottle only has 60 calories.

    My favorite flavor of IZZE-esque is the black raspberry, closely followed by the mandarin. Inexplicably, the lemon-flavored one is terrible (the lemon flavor also contains some sort of Chinese-sounding fruit juice extract that I've never heard of, which might be the culprit; for all we know, it could be melamine!). If you try that one, you will write the whole thing off.

    Drink up!

    Monday, November 10, 2008

    Y'all.

    The Pompous Vegan has been away in Madagascar for most of October. You can read about his sojourn here. It was a whirlwind of joy, and he is sad to be back here in the United States. But he'll get over it.

    Meanwhile, Barack Obama is "set to reverse" the majority of Turd Cutter's missteps as president. So it is to be hoped that the future for the environment, both here and abroad, will be a bright one. At least we now have a President who cares - one who states that clean energy and environmental protection are at the foreground of his vision.

    Congratulations to everyone who helped make this dream a reality. Can you imagine a world in which Sarah "Africa's a Country, Not a Continent" Palin actually had a say in what was happening? We'd all be doomed.

    Keep her away from power, and help Barack Obama make the MOST of his four (and hopefully eight) years.

    Monday, November 3, 2008

    Broadway Doesn't Go for Booze or Dope.


    by Dimples Doublefist

    I am not an alcoholic. In fact, before a year ago, I probably consumed a sum-total of ten alcoholic beverages per year, over the course of two nights. That's because I do like being drunk, but only twice per year.

    That's changed since moving to Washington, DC--a place that's inspired me to give up some bad habits and to pick up news ones. I have, more or less, stopped my flirtation with cigarettes (meaning I don't smoke a few cigarettes every month or so); unfortunately, I now--like everyone else here--drink for fun.

    I used to just go out and get cocktails---gay drinks that contain no fewer than five fruit juices, a splash of seltzer and some kind of designer booze. I love this variety of cocktail, no matter how declasse and trashy. But things have taken a turn for the worse: I now drink a lot of Trader Joe's wine. And I love it.

    Blame it on Sarah Palin: as soon as that moose-hating tyrant was catapulted onto the national stage, I found myself embracing the Two-Buck Chuck Shiraz. And even though Two Buck Chuck actually costs $3, what do I care? It tastes good and does the trick.

    The shiraz is heaven-like nectar: a little bit sweet and smooth as a baby's bottom. It's mother's little helper that's gotten me through the horrors of the general election with a relaxing ease.

    I recommend a bottle or two on hand for tomorrow.

    Tuesday, October 7, 2008

    Brigitte.


    Shazam!

    Former sexpot film star turned animal rights activist Brigitte Bardot busted a big time move on Sarah "Pig Fucker" Palin in a rebarbative memo sent Tuesday:

    "By denying the responsibility of man in global warming, by advocating gun rights and making statements that are disconcertingly stupid, you are a disgrace to women and you alone represent a terrible threat, a true environmental catastrophe," wrote Bardot.
    and:
    In a final salvo against Palin, the 74-year-old ex-star picked up on Palin's depiction of herself as a pitbull wearing lipstick and said she "implored" her not to compare herself to dogs.
    "I know them well and I can assure you that no pitbull, no dog, nor any other animal for that matter is as dangerous as you are," Bardot wrote.
    God damn! Let's not get on this lady's bad side... she ain't fucking around.

    Meanwhile, if anyone deserves to be trashed, it's Sarah Palin. Her blatant, unrepentant ignorance and lies are a disgrace to democracy and to the world. Should she be allowed to ascend to the vice-presidency, we might as well just quit because we will have failed.

    Read the article here.

    Extinct.


    This is the Holdridge's Toad - once a denizen of Costa Rica's rain forests. Despite regular searches for remaining members of this species, the last recorded sighting was in 1986. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature declared it extinct this month.

    Monday, October 6, 2008

    Help, please.


    Okay, this is serious. This is no longer just a "tree hugger's whining" - this is life or death. A new study shows that half - yes, HALF - of the world's mammal species are endangered. We've got to act on this immediately. We've got to rethink the way we live, stop being so greedy, end the destruction of these animals' habitats and ecosystems.

    I don't want to have to explain to children of the future that these animals were once here but aren't anymore because we were just too lazy to figure shit out. This is for real and we all need to work toward a viable solution to this devastating problem.

    If you're talking to someone about this and they say they "don't care" - you have my permission to hit them really hard.

    BARCELONA, Spain - One in two mammal species on Earth are in decline and at least one in four are at risk of disappearing forever, according to a scientific survey released Monday and whose sponsors described the trend as an "extinction crisis" in the making.

    "Mammals are declining faster than we thought," said Jan Schipper, lead author of a companion study being published this week in the journal Science.

    The International Union for Conservation of Nature released the data compiled by 1,700 experts in 130 countries, adding that the numbers could be even worse given that data was lacking for hundreds of mammal species.
    and:
    In South and Southeast Asia, 79 percent of primate species are threatened with extinction, the IUCN noted.
    You can read the whole article here.

    Can you imagine what the world will be like as we sit back and watch these animals just disappear? What will be left? I don't want to think about it. But I have to. We ALL do. Our actions are what will decide the fates of these beautiful animals.

    What's more important - a new housing complex or the survival of a species?

    Saturday, October 4, 2008

    How do these people sleep at night?


    Our Vice-president, Mr. Dick (DICK) Cheney, had this to say recently:

    "As all of you know very well, President Bush made wildlife conservation an early and a high priority of his administration. We’ve carried out that commitment in these eight years — and we’ve been proud to have people like you as partners in the enterprise.

    The men and women in this room understand what conservation is all about. It means reverence toward creation, and a commitment to faithful stewardship. It means guarding our spectacular wildlife populations — not just for our own time, but for all time.
    As anyone who reads, thinks, speaks, or has opposable thumbs KNOWS, it is a defendable fact that the Bush Administration has done everything in its POWER to remove protections from animals, destroy the Environmental Protection Act, make it easier for protected lands to be drilled for oil, and see to it that all bunnies, puppies, tarsiers, marmosets, newts, roaches, and cows are shot dead until the only living things left are fat, stupid Republicans.

    Seriously - the lies these people have told and continue to spew are so horrid and evil that it's a wonder they haven't imploded from all the bad karma they're creating. The next administration - as long as it's the one that will actually DO anything about this stuff - is going to have one seriously immense job on its hands. The world is getting closer and closer to being permanently screwed; we need people to do something about it, not just lie and pretend everything's okay.

    Read this. And then this.

    When are we going to stop TALKING about saving the planet and actually SAVE IT? We can have all the "thinktanks" and coffee klatches and summits we want, but that's not going to stop species from dying and forests from being depleted. Action is needed, and it is needed RIGHT NOW.

    I have enough.

    We have so much here and are so ungrateful.

    Vegan Treats R Mmm-MMM Good.


    by Dimples Doublefist

    Every vegan already knows that the best, most trashy, decadent and delicious baked goods are made by Vegan Treats--a bakery in Bethlehem, PA. Until a couple of months ago, unless you lived in New York City (or, obviously, PA) you were, as the saying goes, shit out of luck.

    Two things have recently happened, one of which is completely fucked up: Vegan Treats now delivers to Washington, DC and Sticky Fingers, Washington DC's crap-tastic vegan bakery has opened a store in NYC. But we are here to focus on the former, not the latter, because the latter is very bad news, because Sticky Fingers is disgusting--the shame of vegan baked goods.

    That's right: some of Vegan Treats' specialties--like the brownies, cream-stuffed cookies and cheesecakes--are available at Java Green and Busboys and Poets. They are not only better than Sticky Fingers, they are less expensive, too.

    I only get my panties in a wad over one item, however; and it's something that's so good and perfect, I am left breathless and heaving every time I eat it: The Chocolate Peanut Butter Mousse Bomb.

    I know that's kind of an obnoxious name for a mere brownie. But, oh, I forgot!: This is no mere brownie! Just look at that pregnant plop of mousse sitting there on that gooey chocolate mass--all rich and chewy, just like your momma didn't make. So what if it's the vegan equivalent to a Double Whopper with large fries?

    This baby is fierce and you should go eat one now.

    Friday, October 3, 2008

    Whole Foods Strikes Back

    There are many things to hate about the Whole Foods in Columbus Circle:

  • It's in Columbus Circle


  • It's packed with rich, self-important dildoes who excel at being obnoxious, either intentionally or otherwise, and generally have 2-5 screeching babies and/or toddlers in tow


  • Most importantly - and this is the ONLY Whole Foods in New York City guilty of this egregious offense - they do NOT label which items in their deli and buffet section are vegan. Every other Whole Foods has a dark green label above their items' ingredient lists that states 'VEGAN' if, in fact, the items are vegan. Why does this one have to be the lone offender? Why is it so hard to accommodate vegans in a fucking health food store?!?


  • So it is easy to say, this is not a pleasant place. Trying to maneuver through the ocean of dipshits that filters through this kiosk of the damned is about as fun as being told your test results won't come back for another two weeks. 

    I was about at the end of my hippie-food rope when I spotted something here that no other Whole Foods, at least to my knowledge, has - vegan desserts from Candle 79. Now, I've never been to Candle 79 - but most vegans in New York City, and some NOT from New York City (like my co-author Jiggles) have ululated endlessly about this place and its otherworldly ability to create food bordering on erotic.

    Now, I'm on a dessert sabbatical at the moment. As you may have read in past posts, I went a little overboard with the desserts, and Mr. Waistline suffered tremendously. However, to further the cause, I purchased one of these divine concoctions. There were several to choose from - Chocolate tart, chocolate peanut butter tart, some fruit tart shit, and some other fruit tart shit.

    Fuck fruit - I wanted the chocolate.

    I don't really know what to say about this except, "Holy fucking balls." One of the best desserts I've had... voluptuous chocolate in a subtle, delicious crust. Smooth, creamy, god damn divine.

    It's a good thing going into that Columbus Circle Whole Foods gives me hives, otherwise I'd be eating one of these motherfuckers every day, and then where would I be? Fat and poor.

    Thursday, October 2, 2008

    Do the Hunza!


    Let me tell you what - this raw food is mad expensive, yo. It is an unfortunate fact, however, that I absolutely love - and I mean LOVE - raw food. I love it. Sure, some of it tastes like coffee grounds in the compost - and yes, a lot of it is even more fattening than its cooked counterpart - but I still love it. I love the concept of it and the fact that, by its very nature, it makes me at least pretend to be a better and healthier person.

    Meanwhile, I don't have time for a lot of these raw food shenanigans. I don't have time for things to sprout or soak or decompose or dehydrate or any of those other processes one must go through in order to make any of this shit even slightly palatable. Therefore, as with regular food, I have turned to the "fast food" version of raw foods - and that generally entails really expensive, yet delicious, "on the go" treats.

    My favorite for quite some time has been the Go Take a Hike! trail mix as presented by our friends at International Harvest.
  • goji berries
  • mulberries
  • golden raisins
  • cacao nibs
  • cashews
  • pistachios
  • Throw all those motherfuckers together and you've got a combination of comestibles that, when blended, equals DELICIOUS.

    A word of advice - be sure to shake the fuck out of your sack of Go Take a Hike! to make sure them cacao nibs are evenly dispersed throughout. Otherwise, you're in for a bitter surprise at the bottom of the bag. When mixed with the sweeter dried fruits and nuts, the nibs are divine. Alone, they taste like chalky doom.

    A note to the people at Gohunza.com and every other raw food website - why is it that every single page on your sites EXCEPT the ones from which you can earn money are perpetually "under construction"? Are you too busy dehydrating rain forest-friendly fruits to write a god damn paragraph telling us why your product should be eaten? Get the god damn lead out of your asses and get some marketing skills. Jesus.

    "You Need Not Think Alike To Love Alike." - Francis David

    Hippie-ism. I had no choice in the matter.

    Take a gander, y'all. This is the kind of shit Marky Mae Brown was raised on. I used to watch this program every Sunday before my parents would whisk me away to that den of liberalism and sin known a the Unitarian Universalist United Fellowship (formerly the Francis David Unitarian Universalist Fellowship). There, I was exposed to free-thinking and radical ideas like love, kindness, community organization, helping the impoverished, working for world peace. There, I discovered what it means to care about something deeply, to strive for unity despite differences.

    This program was clearly made before the Reagan Era destroyed the last remnants of the "peace and love" movement, ushering in mass market consumption and greed - an unpleasant and overpowering trap we still find ourselves in today, perhaps more so than ever before.

    I doubt very highly that a program like this could be made today - there's no place for licensed products here. I'm glad I was brought up when I was. My eyes were opened to things a lot of today's kids will never see. We seem bent on driving home the "us vs. them" mentality of the Bush I and II regimes. I wonder if we'll ever escape that stupid, backward thinking and once again attempt to realize that, underneath it all, we're just people.

    Wednesday, October 1, 2008

    Happy World Vegetarian Day, y'all.

    Yes, today has been declared World Vegetarian Day - a celebration for those of us who are able to move past the instant gratification of hogging down (get it?) a piece of bacon or getting a McRibs from the McDonald's drive-thru and see that meat consumption, farming and production is cruel, unnecessary and harmful to the planet. So to all y'all out there who are down with the tofu pups instead of the real thing - I say, "bust a move" and thank you for helping to make the world a kinder, gentler place.

    For those of you who are NOT vegetarians - why don't you just try it for a day? You'll feel better, you'll be gaining good karma by practicing a little bit of the old ahimsa, you'll be saving animals' lives, and you won't be contributing to an industry that promotes torture and destroys the environment. Give it a whirl - what's a day gonna do to you?

    Meanwhile...

    Not to be a downer or anything, but this ad pretty much sums up one of the main reasons (and there are several) that I think this Alaskan carbuncle shouldn't be in charge of her own existence, much less the free world. Someone needs to slap this bitch to sleep.

    I'm just sayin'.

    Saturday, September 27, 2008

    Issues

    Don't you love how congress just okayed offshore drilling and no one wrote about it or cares? Typical. Here is is, buried with little fanfare under tons and tons of press about Paul Newman, who died today. Is that sad? Yes, of course it is. But this is sad too.

    WASHINGTON (CNN) – The Senate overwhelmingly passed a spending bill Saturday that allows a 26-year ban on offshore oil drilling to expire, subsidizes federal loans for automakers and offers aid to Gulf Coast hurricane disaster victims.

    The House already passed the $600 billion stop gap funding bill on Wednesday. The bill, which passed the Senate on a 78-12 vote, will continue government spending at the current level through March 6, 2009.

    President Bush is expected to sign the measure.

    The end to the ban on oil drilling off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts is a major victory for Republicans. Speeches at the Republican National Convention last month were often interrupted with chants of "Drill, baby, drill."

    The ban will be lifted October 1.
    Say goodbye to those coral reefs.

    Wednesday, September 24, 2008

    Hamburger Helper For Hippies.

    by Marky Mae Brown


    If you're a lazy god damn son of a bitch like I am, you want to be able to prepare something in, oh, about five minutes - something that tastes fucking awesome but requires little to no action on your part whatsoever. Because, let's face it - cooking for one is boring. Lame. 

    I have a solution! It's cheap as hell, and it tastes deee-licious. Plus, if you purchase the right variety, it has almost no caloric value whatsoever. Observe our friend Jyoti:
    Once upon a time, a young girl named Jyoti, born and raised in New Delhi, living in Houston with her Engineer husband (Vijai) and two little children, was studying for a Master’s degree in Nutrition at the Texas Medical Center. Upon completion of Graduate School, she decided to start a business that she could run from home. Prepared Indian style foods of authentic taste and high quality were not available. In modern-day cooking, flavor and nutrition are the important concerns and convenience is very much desired. Recognizing that, and noting America’s intrigue with the tantalizing tastes of India, Jyoti decided to develop Indian style natural foods and sensible fat and salt content and to sell such foods via mail order from home. Jyoti developed recipes for Indian home style foods in cans, and Vijai helped with manufacturing technology for having those foods packed under JYOTI Cuisine India name.
    This is some fly ass shit, y'all. I know it's canned and canned food is supposedly "bad" for you because it's processed and blah blah blah. But guess what. I don't give a fuck. As I said, I am lazy.

    May I direct your attention in particular to the Delhi Saag - Spinach and Mustard Greens with Ginger and Peppers. One can has 4 servings at 60 calories each. That ain't shit. Especially since a "serving" according to whoever figures this shit out is usually about a quarter of what a real person actually consumes. So bring this shit on, y'all, cuz it is mmm-MMM good. 

    Ingredients: Mustard greens, spinach, water, onions, soybean oil, corn meal and corn starch, fresh ginger, hot peppers, lemon juice, and salt. 

    Now, I've modified this shit a few different ways, each more awesome than the next. For example - one night, I added in cubed tofu. It was like a mock paneer. Another night, I added some Morningstar Farms Chik'n Strips (totally vegan, y'all) and some Bragg Liquid Amino Acids (I add that shit to everything, thanks to Gina). And yet another concoction involved some fresh steamed kale (steamed in vegetable broth, which makes it extra delicious) so that I didn't feel like I was being TOO fucking gross in eating canned slime.

    Try it, y'all. It's like taking a Trek to India. And it only costs $2.79 at Ye Olde Purveyor of Fine Comestibles.

    Friday, September 19, 2008

    Soup Is Good Food.


    by Dimples Doublefist

    For breakfast and lunch, these are the questions I ask myself (listed in order of importance):

    1. Will it make me fat?
    2. Is it vegan?
    3. Is it inexpensive?
    4. Will it make me want to take a nap after I eat it?
    5. Will it make me stink?
    6. Will it kill my dogs when they finally force me to hand half of it because they've given me the Evil Puppy Dog Eye and abused their telepathic superpowers (that means it can't contain grapes, raisins, chocolate, onions, macadamia nuts or onions).

    Like Jennifer Coolidge and my significant other, I eat a hell of a lot of soup; I also do a lot of talking and not talking--especially at work. And I am ashamed to admit it, but a lot of said-soup is Dr. McDougall's Right Foods. Let me just get this embarrassing detail out of the way: it's the kind of soup that's dehydrated, with a pull off top. They are frequently on sale for $1.29, and I keep them well-stocked at work. All I have to do is add hot water and voila!

    Here's the thing: these soups do not taste like shit*, but they are not delicious either. They are decent, and I embrace mediocrity in all aspects of life. However, they meet all the important criteria: they are fat free, vegan, cheap, inoffensive, and my dogs LOVE them. They totally go all Lady and the Tramp on the Hot and Sour Noodle Soup; it's precious!

    Since all of us may be eating at the soup kitchen together in the very near future, I recommend getting some practice in with Dr. McDougall.

    (But stay away from the Split Pea...because it looks like diarrhea. Just sayin'.)

    Wednesday, September 17, 2008

    How Corporations Are Working to Save the Environment.

    It's good to know that in these days of increasing fear over our limited resources, corporations - those supplying us with our daily needs - are taking into account the preciousness of life and reworking their products accordingly.

    Example:

    NEENAH, Wis. - If two-ply toilet paper is good, then three-ply tissue must be better. At least that's what toilet-paper researchers in northeastern Wisconsin hope.

    Yes, there is such a thing as a toilet-paper researcher. And a team of them at Georgia Pacific's Innovation Institute in Neenah has come up with a three-ply version of its Quilted Northern product.

    The new product will be launched Monday. The company touts the toilet tissue as "ultra-soft" and says it plans to market the product to women 45 and older who view their bathroom as a "sanctuary for quality time."

    Read the rest up in here.
    Just what the Lazy Assholes of America need - three-ply toilet paper. For fuck's sake.

    Friday, September 12, 2008

    This just about sums it up...

    We were alerted to this by our friends over at Ecorazzi - the green gossip site, and, well, it just sums everything up perfectly. So here you go.



    Bust a MOVE, Pamela Anderson. Bust. A. Move.

    Mirror, Mirror On the Wall.

    by Dimples Doublefist

    Look at that precious baby. I know I'm no professional photographer or anything, and this might not be a Glamour Shot, but you know damn well that's a pretty baby. I know you want to eat that baby.

    A few months after I moved to DC, I stumbled onto the best vegan pizza I've ever sunk my teeth into---and it's right in my neighborhood, so I can eat it anytime I goddamm well please. That pizza is from Astor---a quaint little restaurant that sits right beside Yes! Organic Market on Columbia Road. It's the best kept secret in DC.

    As the saying goes, the devil is in the details and this pizza contains melt-in-your-mouth eggplant, a sauce so rich and garlicky (without being overwhelming) that it makes your mouth water, and a hand-tossed, brick-oven baked crust that is unparalleled. Let me tell you: I have eaten the shit out of this pizza and my love affair is not even close to being soured. No one could ever get sick of eating this shit.

    I know there are haters out there---people who can't imagine a pizza that tastes delicious without cheese. But I dare you to not fall in love with this one. This love is guaranteed.

    Thursday, September 11, 2008

    Wouldn't you rather have MEAT?



    From the Yoga Sutra of Patanjali:

    Obstacles occur when the mind is distracted,
    and this can be caused by illness, fogginess of the mind,
    having doubts, carelessness, and laziness
    And by mistaken views of the world
    that are left uncorrected,
    failing to reach specific levels,
    or not being established in them firmly.
    Geshe Michael Roach's translation explains: "Our culture today has its own massively mistaken ideas of the world, and these cause all the hunger, poverty, sickness, and war in the world. If our people's view of the world is causing pain to others and ourselves, then we must look for a better one, one that works. If it doesn't work, we cannot simply continue to follow whatever we learned as children, whether it came from parents or schools, churches or governments."

    So, what does all this blathering, hippie crap have to do with anything?

    Well, I bring this up specifically in regards to red meat consumption. And our duty as a society to right a wrong that is not only detrimental to our physical health, but to the health of the planet.

    "I like hamburgers," people say. Guess what - so do I. I'll go one step further - I LOVE hamburgers. I used to eat those things Every single day. Hamburgers were one of my favorite things about being alive.

    But, like lots of things that I love - cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, Madonna - hamburgers turned out to be bad. After reading scientific proof that cattle farming is irrefutably tied to global warming - and this was YEARS before the UN's global warming report came out - I gave up red meat.
    The 414-page United Nations report Livestock's Long Shadow concluded that the livestock sector is "one of the top two or three most significant contributors to the most serious environmental problems, at every scale from local to global." The report suggested that the livestock industry should be "a major policy focus when dealing with problems of land degradation, climate change and air pollution, water shortage and water pollution, and loss of biodiversity."

    Meat Is the Number One Cause of Global Warming
    According to the U.N. report, raising animals for food generates more greenhouse-gas emissions than all the cars, trucks, trains, ships, and planes in the world combined. The livestock sector is one of the largest sources of carbon dioxide and the single largest source of both methane and nitrous oxide emissions. Nitrous oxide is about 300 times more potent as a global warming gas than carbon dioxide. According to the U.N., the meat, egg, and dairy industries account for a staggering 65 percent of worldwide nitrous oxide emissions.
    read the rest of the article here
    Then there's just the idea that we, as thinking rational beings - the "pinnacle of evolution" - should be able to overcome our desire to murder other beings for food and for clothing. We've progressed beyond any of this being necessary.

    Ahimsa is a lovely concept to grasp and enjoy. Put simply, ahimsa is nonviolence to any living being. It's a practice that makes you a better person.
    Ahimsa (Devanagari: अहिंसा; IAST ahiṃsā) is a Sanskrit term meaning non-violence (literally: the avoidance of violence - himsa). It is an important tenet of the religions that originated in ancient India (Hinduism, Buddhism and especially Jainism). Ahimsa is a rule of conduct that bars the killing or injuring of living beings. It is closely connected with the notion that all kinds of violence entail negative karmic consequences. The extent to which the principle of non-violence can or should be applied to different life forms is controversial between various authorities movements and currents within the three religions and has been a matter of debate for thousands of years.

    Though the origins of concept of ahimsa are unknown, the earliest references to ahimsa are found in the texts of historical Vedic religion, dated to 8th century BCE. Here, ahimsa initially relates to "non-injury" without a moral connotation, but later to non-violence to animals and then, to all beings. The idea emerges again in the Hindu texts Mahabharata and Manu Smriti, where ahimsa is said to be merited by good Karma. Though meat-eating and slaughter of animals are criticized by some Hindu texts, other texts present counter-arguments in support of hunting and ritual sacrifice. In the 19th and 20th centuries, prominent figures of Indian spirituality such as Swami Vivekananda, Ramana Maharishi, Swami Sivananda and A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami emphasized the importance of ahimsa. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi applied ahimsa to politics, by his non-violent satyagrahas.

    Ahimsa in Jainism emphasizes vegetarianism and bans hunting and ritual sacrifice. Jains go out of their way so as not to hurt even small insects and other minuscule animals and make considerable efforts not to injure plants in everyday life as far as possible. In accordance to this policy, eating of some foods, whose cultivation harms small insects and worms as well as agriculture itself, is to be abstained from. Violence in self-defense, criminal law, and war are accepted by Hindus and Jains. Though ahimsa is not used as a technical term in Buddhism unlike the other two religions, it condemns ritual sacrifice and war and moral codes emphasize the importance of not taking life.

    read the whole article here
    Why am I being so hippie-ish today?

    Because I am a hippie. I am a hippie who believes that all sentient life on this planet has a right to exist in its own circle of being without being trodden on by other sentient forms of life. When rednecks devastate a forest that is home to an endangered species and claim their rights to the land supercede those of the animals - they are displaying extreme ignorance. One animal - whether it's a bird, a slug, a roach, a mosquito, or a human - does NOT have more right than the other.

    If humans could get over their egocentric idea that they own the planet and other animals are just guests, then maybe we could get this place back in shape and keep it beautiful and clean for future generations of ALL species.

    One way to start this process is to cut the fucking meat out of your diet. Animal farming - factory farming especially - is causing massive destruction.

    Red meat - like cigarettes, alcohol and Madonna - is horrible.

    Not only in what it does to your body, but what it does to the planet. But, like cigarettes and alcohol, lots of people just can't get enough of it. Ultimately, letting the red meat stay on the cow is the best way to show your adoration. Sacrifice is hard - but sacrifice is necessary.

    We've got to reshape society to overcome "meat love" if we want to survive. That's just the way it is.

    Monday, September 8, 2008

    Salty Balls.

    Disregard that part about "seafood meal" enjoyment, or pretend they're talking about nori.


    Mmm-MMMM! I just waddled over to the Westerly Natural Foods - my favorite purveyor of organic delectables in Manhattan - and ventured into the raw foods aisle to retrieve a snizzack that would satiate my desire for something sweet without adding girth to Mr. Waistline. 

    What I found was "Temple Balls II" - an all-raw, vegan and certified organic snack from our friends at Glaser Farms, way down in Miami, Florida.

    Ingredients - "organic medjool dates, organic raw almonds, organic sesame, celtic sea salt, organic spices."

    I rolled a few of these balls around in my mouth for a hot minute before coming to the conclusion that these are the best balls I've had in quite some time. They get a big, fat thumbs-up from me, y'all. 

    By the way - yes, there really IS a difference between Temple Balls and Temple Balls II.

    Glaser Farms differentiates them thusly -

    Temple Balls: "Surprisingly moist and delicious."

    Temple Balls II: "These yummy little balls have a grown up taste that even kids clamor for. All raw."

    Get your hands on these balls if you know what's good for you. This shit is fucking good.

    Retards at Work and Play.

    Sarah Palin Wants a McDonald's Here.


    I did not watch the RNC because the mere mention of that Alaskan cunt's name makes my hands ball into fists involuntarily.

    The moment I read of Gopherz picking her as his running-mate, my stomach immediately cramped into an acidic knot of doom, misery and horror. I was so nauseated by that news that I had to get up and leave my apartment, walking around Fort Greene park and looking at the trees and dogs in order to calm the fuck down. Because, basically, Sarah Palin stands opposed to trees and dogs. Especially if they get in the way of her greedy and idiotic quest to rape Alaska's virgin territories in order to suck the limited supply of oil out of the northern territory to "end our dependence on foreign oil."

    I did not watch the RNC. But I know they were all chanting, "Drill, baby, drill!" in a brainwashed, short-sighted, idiotic cacophony of Wal-Mart shopping and meat-gorging shame.

    These people just refuse to think. They refuse to grasp the concepts that oil dependence is a large contributing factor to this planet's rapidly decreasing stability. They refuse to figure out that once you destroy a forest, it isn't going to grow back. They refuse to stop to consider that animals - in this case, polar bears and wolves - are beautiful sentient beings that deserve their homes just as much as we do.

    "Drill, baby, drill" is a mantra being heard around the country because these people fear change. They are afraid of a new approach - one that would create jobs and help us clean our air, rivers, forests... one that would pave the way to a cleaner, healthier planet for their children and grandchildren. Fear stops us from doing lots of things, but in this case, it's a fear we MUST overcome.

    What's the big deal about electric cars? What's so wrong with wind energy? Why do these people make fun of this stuff as if it's something that one would read about in the sadly-defunct Weekly World News? These alternative energies and means of transportation have not only been proven to work, but are also NECESSARY if we don't want to end up living in a hell of our own doing.

    Some scientists say it's already too late to do anything about our eventual downfall. I am too optimistic to grasp that concept, surprisingly. But it's coming up fast... and with schmegeggies like this ululating out their brainwashed idiocy with the glee of a child on Christmas day, it's going to be a fucking hard fight.

    But we have to do it. We HAVE to stand up to these big-business turds. Sarah Palin's statement that she "doesn't believe" the science that proves global warming is manmade says to me that either she hasn't read the UN documents on global warming, or she's so entrenched in the oil business and its profits that she just doesn't care. Scientists from around the world accumulated that information - it wasn't, as dipshit conservatives blather, a "liberal agenda." It is proven. It is a fact.

    We have to defeat Sarah Palin and Gopherz. If we don't, she and her minions of money-grubbing asswipes will wreak even more intense havoc on our beautiful planet than we've suffered in the hands of Dipshit McGee and his asinine eight years of reversals and inaction.

    "Drill, baby, drill" - y'all need to wake the fuck up.

    Wednesday, September 3, 2008

    Burritos In the Mornin' Make Me Happy

    by Dimples Doublefist

    Is there anything you love, but you know there's no particularly good reason why? Whatever it is might not suck, but you know it doesn't deserve its own haiku--much less a sonnet. You love it just because you love it: maybe it evokes some childhood memory or a fun vacation. It's one of those things you probably love privately--like Beyonce or masturbation.

    Anway, that's how I feel about Amy's Breakfast Burrito. I seriously never tire of them. When they are 2 for $4, I buy copious amounts and stuff them into my refrigerator at work. If they become slightly boring (which they really never do), I buy a jar of salsa and dunk them in it. They have potatoes, tofu, salsa, black beans, peppers and onions. It's the trifecta, even if that's more than three perfect things.

    In general, I could take or leave Amy. Some of things taste like downright shit. I do love that cheeseless pizza a whole lot, but unlike Stumps who is completely enamored by that rice crust/Follow Your Heart vegan cheese pizza, I'd rather be locked up here in my office all day and smell my boston terrier's diarrhea farts. In other words, I despise it.

    What Amy's product do you love?

    Saturday, August 30, 2008

    Without the rain forest, life on earth is unsustainable.

    The Amazon. Wouldn't a Wal-Mart look great here?

    A few months ago, on a whim, I picked up a pre-publication copy of a children's book my last place of employment was publishing - it was called You Can Save the Planet.

    It was the evening before I was getting on a plane for Los Angeles (after being a good psychotic hippie and buying carbon credits to make my trip carbon-neutral), and I was bored. I flipped to a page and started reading. This book, mind you, is for kids. I opened it to a chapter on the rain forest. It started (and I am paraphrasing) - "Did you know that without rain forests, life on earth would be unsustainable? Did you also know that an area of rain forest the size of a football field is cleared EVERY SECOND?"

    Well, needless to say, my evening was shot. This shit is ridiculous. I KNOW they're poor and doing what they have to in order to survive. I KNOW a lot of them don't know any better. But, Jesus Fucking Christ. We have to teach them how to farm sustainably. We HAVE TO.

    It can't be that difficult.

    And now there's this trinket of news:
    RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil - Amazon deforestation jumped 69 percent in the past 12 months — the first such increase in three years — as rising demand for soy and cattle pushes farmers and ranchers to raze trees, officials said Saturday.

    Some 3,088 square miles of forest were destroyed between August 2007 and August 2008 — a 69 percent increase over the 1,861 square miles felled in the previous 12 months, according to the National Institute for Space Research, or INPE, which monitors destruction of the Amazon.
    We need to figure this shit out. And we need to do it NOW. Land-raping has to stop - at the rate we're going, there won't be anything left to plunder.

    What can we do?

    Donating money to some "fund" that emails me on a daily basis, wastes god knows how much paper and fuel sending out annoying bulk mailings on a weekly basis, gives away "premiums" like stuffed dolphins that I'm sure were made in China - that's obviously not working.

    We've got a cute little movie called Madagascar - it shows lemurs and sifakas and aye-ayes frolicking in the beauty and wonder of a Paradise on Earth with rivulets and food and baobab trees and fruit a-plenty. But did you know that only ten per cent of Madagascar's rain forest - yes, that's correct - TEN PER CENT - remains, and even that is teetering on the brink of being clear-cut?

    All those cute little lemurs and chameleons and tenrecs and aye-ayes kids are going to be cheering when Madagascar 2: Escape 2 Africa comes out in November - they're dying out really, really quickly because Malagasy need to know how to farm sustainably.

    I would volunteer my services GLADLY if I could find an organization that would teach farmers how to work without clear-cutting. I would work for FREE as long as I could have the knowledge that I was helping save the rain forest from complete and utter destruction.

    Anyone have any ideas? I'm not kidding.