Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Time for... a cool change

(i know, it's nerdy to like the Little River Band, but i do...)

Mattie and I went hiking last week in this trail-rich area near where we live. It was SO HOT. We were fortunate to not see any rattlesnakes, which are "in season" now... Well, we found shady areas along the way but even better, at a "visitors center" there, i found a little fountain for her to get cooled off. I kept her on the leash just in case it wasn't "legal" for us to be there!


Monday, May 29, 2006

No secrets here...

Vegan BBQ week in the U.K. - who knew?

Da Vegan Code (and the Secret Society of Vegans):

Saturday, May 27, 2006

LAME - Living Among Meat Eaters, that is

Among other books I've been reading, I've been thumbing through "Living Among Meat Eaters" by Carol J. Adams for a month or so. It's an interesting read for the most part. There are chapters and bits within the chapters that are a bit melodramatic for my taste, but the book is filled with good insight and at times offers helpful advice for various situations that inevitably come up.
And it includes a handful of good-lookin' recipes as well.


Friday, May 26, 2006

Labels & Worcestershire

Labels aren't always what they're cracked up to be:

Sometimes i tire of explaining why i'm a veg*n...
Aren't we all just so much more than what we
choose to eat and wear? It's a way of life to be
vegan, not just a choice of food and clothing...


Anyone looking for vegan Worcestershire sauce?
This stuff is good:

and it's on sale evidently...

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Thursday, May 25, 2006

For East Coasters, Sexy Veg*ns & Bird Brains

In my e-mail today, from In Defense of Animals:

Win FREE TIX to the Humane Leadership Academy

IDA Offers 10 Free Tickets to New York City Activist's Forum

This summer, IDA is co-sponsoring the Humane Leadership Academy, a one-day forum in New York City featuring speakers, presentations, discussions and interactive workshops with many of today's most accomplished and respected animal protection leaders.

As an incentive for activists to attend the Academy, IDA is giving away 10 free tickets valued at $25 apiece. These not only include admission to the forum and all activities but also a delicious vegan lunch.

The Humane Leadership Academy will be held from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sunday, July 9 at the SLC Conference Center in New York City (visit http://www.slccenters.com/ for directions and a map).

Click link below for more information about the Humane Leadership Academy:

For your chance to win one or two free tickets, send an e-mail to valerie@idausa.org

(To purchase tickets, click http://www.ticketweb.com/t3/event/EventListings?orgId=13261 or call (866) 468-7619.)

From the blog of Born Veggie...
Sky.com's gallery of "sexy vegetarians"
(What?! No "Weird Al" Yankovic? Oy, am i ever so disappointed):

i adore "Weird Al," the brilliant vegan:


When I was a kid growing up in Illinois, there were sweet doves that nested outside my family's house, right above my bedroom window. I loved those guys! We also had bats in the summer in the ivy on our back wall to the house. Totally captivating.

Here in SoCal, I live in a teeeny tiny condo but I get to hear an array of birds every morning - and I thank G-d for that.

Being as though I don't have a proper place to offer nibbles or water to the flying singers and soaring tweeters, I make sure to keep the bird feeder and bird bath filled at my folks' house. My dad likes to keep sweet drink out for the hummingbirds as well. There are all sorts of 'em that come by and visit and when I am there I definitely take time to check 'em out. Yeah, they leave their "mark(s)," but it's a small price to pay for all the joy they bring.

Here are 12 birds' songs, very nice:

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Play ball!

For better or worse, my career choice has had me working in and around the sports world for more than 20 years.

With that in mind, but more because of my love for animals and veg food being very important, i thought i would share this Web site i just found, in case anyone plans on attending any major league baseball games this summer:
And even if you don't go to any MLB games, it's still cool to know that some of the teams are evolving... including "my" San Diego Padres!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Dear deer

A friend of mine who used to work with me sent me a belated birthday gift which I got in the mail today: the 2006 National Parks Pass! I can't believe it. What a cool gift! Vince Denny, the pal who got me the pass, also took this photo of this dear deer when he was hiking somewhere... Yosemite perhaps. I can't wait to get to more National Parks, that I know for sure... Anyone have any faves they recommend? (And I wouldn't forget Canada... though I don't think the pass will work there!) Last year I went to Zion National Park in Utah. I absolutely fell in love with it!

Monday, May 22, 2006

i got mine, now it's your turn!

A slew of Turtle Mountain coupons arrived in today's mail.
If you're interested:

Also for Tofutti fans (of which i am one):


If you are at all interested in (possibly!) gaining insight into how your friends and family members see you, in comparison/contrast to how you see yourself, The Johari Window is one way to check that out.


Saturday, May 20, 2006

Friday, May 19, 2006

Calling all veg athletes (and wannabes like me)

Another stellar read from The Arizona Star
published this past Tuesday by Jennifer Duffy:

"On Pace:
Can a vegan diet fuel an athlete?
He says yes"


Great reading there for me, to be sure.



"The da Vinci Code" in movie form is out and there is much talk
about it, as there has been since the best-selling book was published.

Anyway, I'm not sure if this is supposed to be a hoax or not:


The best lines from above link:

(da Vinci Code author) Dan Brown revealed that Mona Lisa was a play on words using the Greek gods of fertility Amon and Isis.

The Vegans claim that the real joke was rearranging the letters of Mona Lisa to make "No Salami."


i *heart* Leonardo da Vinci, vegetarian and animal-lover extraordinaire!

See: http://www.ivu.org/history/davinci/hurwitz.html

...(T)he time will come when men such as I
will look upon the murder of animals
as they now look upon the murder of men.
-Leonardo da Vinci

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Peanuts 'n' Radicals 'n' e-mails, Oh My!

I can't link to it and don't have it scanned but today's "Classic Peanuts" has a great first three panels.

Panel one: Charlie Brown says to Lucy, "I'm a great believer in kindness...
Panel two: He continues, "I think we should be kind not only to other people, but to animals, fish, birds and all living creatures..."
Panel three: Lucy says, "I guess you and I have gentle hearts, Charlie Brown."

Very nice.

Has anyone seen "The Radical Vegetarian Cartoon Book"?
It's pretty cool...
(etc., about 25 pages of interesting stuff)

And some good news in an e-mail from the Humane Society of the U.S.:

"Earlier today (May 18), the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously approved an amendment -- the Rahall-Whitfield-Sweeney-Spratt amendment -- to stop the commercial sale and slaughter of wild horses and burros.

...Last year, this identical amendment passed by a vote of 249-159, which was a very decisive vote in our favor. But today, that vote was unanimous in support of the horses!

The fight to protect wild horses is a key component of the larger goal of ending all horse slaughter for human consumption. As you know, there are nearly 100,000 horses sent to three foreign-owned slaughterhouses operating in the United States. The horses are shipped in cattle trucks and sent to slaughterhouses, where these majestic animals are dismembered and then exported in order to please the palates of consumers in Belgium, France, and Japan.

While this was a hugely important win today, now we must get the same result in the U.S. Senate..."

Also found this really cool end to an e-mail from In Defense of Animals:

"It is the policy of In Defense of Animals to no longer use language that accepts the current concept of animals as property, commodities and/or things. Rather than refer to ourselves or others as "owners" of animals we share our lives with, we now refer to ourselves and others as "guardians" of our animal friends and to animals as "he" or "she" rather than "it." Guardians do not buy or sell animals; instead they rescue and adopt. We urge you to do the same."

And finally, a link from an e-mail from Farm Sanctuary that is a good read for vegans:


The story, written by Levi J. Long
and published Monday in The Arizona Daily Star,
begins thusly:

The shoes are fashionable.

And the food isn't bad either.

No longer considered a "hippie fad," the vegan lifestyle is translating into business opportunities for some local entrepreneurs, resulting in part from a growing $50 billion a year natural-products industry.

"People think vegans are grungy, granola eaters," said Ana Terrazas, who has been a vegan for 25 years.

"But it is becoming more mainstream, and businesses are thinking about that."

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Separation anxiety

McCartney mishpacha* mishegas**:


Animal activists Paul and Heather have been outspoken about veg*n stuff for years. It makes me kind of sad to know of this situation... Back in the day before few folks were talking about veg stuff, Paul and his wonderful, now deceased wife, Linda McCartney, were doing great things to promote love and peace on Earth with/for all living things! Paul has always made me proud to love animals as I do and I consider him practially a veg*n pioneer.

*"mishpacha" is Hebrew for "family"
*"mishegas" is Yiddish for "craziness" (not in the literal sense though)

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

The Look of Love

My photographer friend Gary Shacker took this photo looking away from Lake Murray into La Mesa, a city within the confines of eastern San Diego County, last month. Sooooo awesome!

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Savory snacks, MOM, work e-mails and Dan Piraro

These are four of my stand-bys (not in order of preference). I love 'em all, in all the different flavours in which they come.

Anyone have a fave or one they dislike (either one pictured, or another brand?)?

And has anyone tried anything from this web site, or any of the products offered here:

HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY to all you moms out there and to all of us who are lucky to have our moms still around with us on Earth... a very happy momma's day to them as well.

Today I made calls to friends who are moms and to a few friends who sadly have lost their mothers over the years. I feel so fortunate to be close to my mother both geographically and emotionally (some might say TOOCLOSE but i don't agree!). I also got to spend some time with my mom and Peter's mom and the mother of my CA-residing nephew and niece. Grand!

My full-time job in journalism away from freelancing offers some glimpses into a lot of totally strange things. I'm not quite sure why this turned up on my department's e-mail today or what exactly this place is all about, it looks quasi-religious, but it seems to be pro-veg and kind of interesting...

and then here for English translation:

I'm a little lazy about looking at it at the moment... if anyone knows anything about this group (or maybe I just need to look at it more closely when I have time - later), please feel free to chime in with a comment!! I remember getting some kind of strange handout at the Earth Day Fair last month that looks a lot like most of the images i have seen thus far on the above site...

Just a couple more things and then that is all:

Saw the following link to an informative and cute video at Veggie Geek's blog and wanted to share it as I profess my undying appreciation for the genius of artist/cartoonist extraordinaire Dan Piraro:

And after the movie, I visited this cool Piraro-loved/recommended site: http://woodstockfas.org/
I love places like that.

Hope everyone has a beautiful, blessed week ahead!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Reason #601,030 to spay/neuter

Go Montana, go Massachusetts, go Georgia!

From LA Online Magazine, "What's a Dog Worth?" (Link may or may not be working at the moment... it's been on and off line for a while...)


An interesting (read: sad but true) line from above article:
"Few of us have the zeal to lead purely vegan lives, rejecting every product that relies on the sacrifices of a nonhuman species."

And how i wish there were more places like this:


Thursday, May 11, 2006

Organic athletes 'R' Us

As i try to become more athletic and more vegan the older (*cough cough, sob sob*) i get, i find i like these Web sites more and more:


I also just bought this book ------->
and i'm stoked about the possibilities!

Hope everyone's week has been going well!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Bipolar + Irony = Bipolrony?

Wow. Life is so strange and cool. And ironic, too. ("A little too ironic... Don'tcha think?" as Alanis Morrissette would croon.)

I got a call early this morning from the publisher of one of the magazines I write for to cover a lunchtime talk in town this afternoon. The chat was at a swank hotel and was given by a young woman, Lizzie Simon, who is currently on a book tour to support the personal journey she documented called "Detour: My Bipolar Road Trip in 4-D." (See http://www.lizziesimon.com/ )

I jumped at the opportunity as one of my very best friends was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder years ago and I have done extensive research on this mental illness (as well as other mental illnesses).

Plus, the people who backed Ms. Simon's visit, a civic-minded and Jewish-oriented group, were going to serve me a vegan lunch --- on the house. Yay! (And it was actually pretty good, mind you: roasted veggies, whole wheat roll, potatoes, iced tea, fruit compote.)

It was a fascinating talk given by Ms. Simon, a mere lass who just turned 30. It became apparent early in her talk that her sometimes tumultuous life journey has left her wise beyond those years. She spoke eloquently and was quite insightful on the subject of BP and her own experiences through confusion, embarrassment, anxiety until finding help - and with that, acceptance.

Hers was evidently a veritable stigma-filled hell until she was able to find her way back to LIFE through therapy, medication and love.

She found acceptance of herself - her whole self. Isn't that what we all strive for?

So of course, I bought her book, which details her emotional and physiological trip through BP and an actual geographic trip across the USA to talk to others who have this often debilitating mental illness. She was kind enough to autograph the book to my friend --- but I am going to read it first! It looks fascinating!

Below is a photo of Lizzie and me:

Soon, I'm off to interview composer extraordinaire Aaron Zigman's parents for another story I'm working on. An interesting day thus far...

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


"In and around the lake/
Mountains come out of the sky/And they stand there/
One mile over we’ll be there/And we’ll see you/Ten true summers we’ll be there/
And laughing too." -Yes

This is San Diego's Lake Murray, which is a very nice spot, a reservoir not far from where I live. Quite lush this time of year.

A serene place to sit and contemplate and watch the ducks.
Or run and jog.
Or draw or paint.
Or hike or bike.
Or read and write.
Or rent a rowboat.
Or in-line blade.
Or picnic on veggie goodies.
Or walk the dog.
Or any and all of the above... It is 0h-so nice!

Photo was taken by photographer extraordinaire Gary Shacker.

Monday, May 08, 2006

i won! and even better, IDA wins!

My kinda town, Veganville!

In Defense of Animals had an eBay auction and i am so happy i won this (above) today!


P.S. Has anyone taken this VEGAN quiz? (Not for the faint of heart, take with a smidgen of sarcasm.)

Sunday, May 07, 2006


Glad to be home!

My mom and I were there to visit my aunt, actually my dad's older sister, who is not well and has been hospitalized for a while. It was a tough trip in many ways...

However, I hooked up with some old friends, made some new ones and generally made the best of the trip to Chicago. The weather cooperated other than the first two which were rainy and cold.

Went to a few ammmazing restaurants, including:
Amitabul http://www.amitabul.getwebnet.com/ (with my pal Jeff, who has a young veg daughter)
Blind Faith Cafe http://www.blindfaithcafe.com/ (with my mom, and we then dined at Lake Michigan)
The Chicago Diner http://www.veggiediner.com/ (with friends Steve and Robin, see below).

I ate some seriously splendid seitan, the best mac 'n' "cheez," and so much other groovy grub at the above places. Plus dessert at Blind Faith... this vegan peanut butter 'n' chocolate cake that was pretty much "to die for." (Isn't it just THE BEST that no animal ever has to suffer in any way for vegans!?!)

Ran along Lake Michigan (alone but with myriad others who walked, ran, skated, biked, etc.) and through The North Branch Bicycle Trail (Jeff and I saw three deer!), hit at batting cages and played miniature golf at a local hangout with my pal Dave and his daughter.

I also enjoyed daily jaunts through "Indian Boundary" (where I "spoke" to some animals who are "housed" - let me know what YOU think: http://www.chicagoparkdistrict.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/parks.detail/object_id/068C3D93-E5F8-4D02-8767-867161271B8A.cfm ) and one night I skated at a roller rink on "R&B Night" with my friend Tammy Sue. Very interesting, all of that varied activity.

My animal activist/journalist friend Steve Dale ( http://www.stevedalepetworld.com/ ) and his lovely and brilliant wife, Robin, were kind enough to take me to eat after including me on their visit to Soggy Paws ( http://soggypaws.com/about_us.html ) for a "party," where I met some cool vegans, including two who are involved with the Tree House Animal Foundation, Inc. ( http://treehouseanimals.org/ ). Incredibly cool. Steve is going to be teaching "Kitty Klasses" there, among other places. Their own cat, Roxy, impressed me with the many talents she had, including giving a paw - just like a dog. So freakin' cool. They have two dogs, Lucy and Chaser and a skink, Cosette.

Below is a photo of Steve, Cosette and me:

I bought most of my gifts to bring back for family and friends at Chicago's Anti-Cruelty Society http://www.anticruelty.org/ - I was so very sorry to not have been able to attend their "Bark in the Park" event ( http://www.barkinthepark.org/ ), which was Saturday. I had to leave Friday afternoon. Such a bummer like I can't tell you... but life goes on!

Anyway, back to SoCal my mom and I went, armed with Chicago Cubs-emblazoned bags of peanuts and two big bags o'Jays potato chips!

Friday and Saturday was the San Diego Spaniel Rescue ( http://dogrescue.250free.com/ ) fundraising garage sale. Today I found out they raised $2,000!!! So amazing! Normally I give out stuff weekly to Animal Protection & Rescue League http://aprl.org/ for their fabulous second-hand store (which is conveniently located next to my fave veg restaurant here, Sipz ( http://www.sipz.com/ ) but I have spent the last couple of months getting donations to SDSR.

As an added bonus for all concerned, when I came back Friday night (saying hi to Mattie, briefly, before going straight to work), there was a box at my parents' house with some surprise contributions for the sale from a big-hearted woman named Marie, who volunteers for a Cocker Spaniel rescue group in Pennsylvania called "Castaway Cockers" ( http://www.castawaycockers.com/ and http://www.petfinder.org/shelters/PA21.html ). I got to bring more stuff to the garage sale. (And of course I had to buy a bunch of stuff, too.)

People are so awesome. Working together we can work wonders!!

And that's about all she wrote!