Saturday, January 31, 2015

Winter Strikes Again

I have missed kickboxing class so many times in the last couple months! It's really starting to piss me off. First we didn't have class forever because the instructor was out of town. I went to a whole one class before it was cancelled again. Then last night I didn't go because I thought the weather was going to be really bad and I didn't want to have my mom's car out on bad roads. It was snowing all morning and the roads looked shitty, so I texted my instructor to tell him that I wouldn't be able to be there. Then, by the time it was time for class, it had stopped snowing and the roads looked completely fine. I'm telling you, Winter is a sentient being who is specifically trying to ruin my life. Now it has tricked me into missing the one thing that I actually look forward to every week.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Ⓥ Bad Vegan Guilt

I'm honestly not sure if this is something that is unique to me, or if other vegans experience it as well. I get this feeling that I'm being a bad vegan for liking things that are not specifically vegan. I'm not talking about foods or clothes, or anything else that actually contains animal products (that would make sense). I'm talking about TV shows, musicians, books, things like that. I refuse to support anyone, or anything, that I know to be cruel to animals in some way. I stop supporting any artist who wears fur, I won't watch movies if I find out that the animal actors were mistreated, etc. I still feel somewhat bad for supporting anything that is not actively vegan though.

I know it's rather unreasonable for us to expect everything we participate in to be directly in line with our beliefs, especially considering what a small percentage of the total population we are. Still, it's rather disappointing to be reading a book and find that the author keeps mentioning that the characters are eating meat. When I get involved in the lives of fictional characters, I am always tempted to just pretend that they feel the same way I do about animal rights. This works out fine, as long as nothing is actually stated to the contrary. When it is directly pointed out that they don't share my beliefs, I lose a little bit of the connection I felt to them.

On the other hand, I find that I try very hard to like things that are created by other vegans or animal rights activists. I make a point to listen to bands that I wouldn't otherwise listen to because the members are vegan, or watch movies that don't necessarily appeal to me because they have vegan actors. I feel like we, as vegans, have an obligation to support each other in every way we can. To me that means sometimes convincing myself to like things that I otherwise wouldn't.

I guess when you get right down to it, it's basically just a need to feel a connection to the things I love. It's the desire to feel understood. I don't want to have to put my beliefs on hold in order to be entertained. I want to be able to be who I am and love what I love at the same time. Unfortunately, for now, that can be pretty hard to do.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Time for a Change....Again

I have, yet again, gotten completely bored with my whole look. I need something new! I just can't decide what. I've been trying this whole more natural looking makeup thing for a whole now and I just don't know if I like it. I want to try something totally different though, I just can't decide what yet. So, naturally,I've now spent countless hours online looking for makeup that I like that is also vegan, which is a giant pain in the ass! Also, my hair is starting to piss me off again. I was pretty happy with the blonde for a while, but in order to get it the color I want I have to leave the bleach on for a really long time, which is starting to fry the shit out of my hair. I'm actually considering (Considering) trying my natural color for the first time in......I don't know.......15 years....?
If only I were shifter, I could try all the things I want to without having to commit to one. 

Wednesday, January 28, 2015


Lately I have been drinking this vegan protein powder stuff. I have been partly drinking it to help me build muscle, but mostly just because I really hate cooking, and just being able to throw some of this stuff in a bottle makes my life easier. That's not actually the point of this post though. The point is, I recently thought "You know what would be really nice? Getting protein and caffeine at the same time!" So I started mixing coffee with the protein powder. It works quite well.....except for one thing. For some reason that is beyond my understanding of physics, if I use hot coffee it turns the powder into a giant gelatinous glob in the bottom of the bottle. No amount of shaking will break up said glob after it has formed. The only solution is to let the coffee get completely cool before pouring it into the bottle. Sometime I just don't have time for that, which means that sometimes I end up chewing my protein shake, which is fucking gross. If someone can explain to me why this happens, I would be very interested to know.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015


Ban-Gaisgedaig- Young female warriors in ancient Celtic society, responsible for teaching boys the arts of combat and love.

I want to be made of satin and steel, to have a soft sheen of beauty covering the unyielding strength underneath. I want eyes lit by the fire in my soul, and flesh warmed by the molten metal coursing through my veins. Is it possible to be both the maiden and the knight? To have the face to inspire the hero and the arm to fight by his side? How does one reconcile sensuality and strength? Must we choose between beauty and bravery? Does femininity preclude heroics? I don't want to have to choose. I want to be a muse and a warrior, to have the ability to instill both desire and fear. I want to be the powers of nature incarnate, to have the glow of the sun in my skin and the force of the ocean in my muscles, to posses the gentle touch of the wind and the solid bearing of the earth. Fuck fairy tales with their damsels in distress. I will be a damsel in control.
I know it's been for-fucking-ever so, in case you forgot, this ^ image means this is a poem.

Monday, January 26, 2015

I'm On a Roll

My luck seems to be on a bit of an upswing these last couple of days. First, I didn't completely humiliate myself at the poetry slam. Then, last night, I actually won a card game. My mom, my sister, and I played canasta last night ( I know, we are the most exciting people) for the fist time in a long time. I've always enjoyed playing canasta but, as far as I can remember, I have never actually won a game. In fact, there have only been a handful of times in my life that I've won any game (or anything for that matter). This time I did though. Perhaps this is a sign that things are starting to turn around.........probably not, but it's still kind of cool. 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Better Than I Expected

I guess I was a little overly dramatic yesterday. The poetry slam actually went really well. By "really well" I mean that I didn't completely humiliate myself. In fact, I got third place. There were only six participants, but still it was kind of nice. I made it through all three rounds for the first time since I've been doing this, so I call that a success. Anyway, I just thought I would let you guys know that I was freaking out for nothing. Also, thank you to everyone who helped me out with choosing my poems, and everyone who had anything to do with the slam, it was a great experience!
Me sister took some great pictures of everyone too!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Wish Me Luck, I'm Going to Need It

Today is the poetry slam. I have to leave soon, so I don't have time to write much. I would just like to reiterate though, I don't know why the fuck  do this to myself! People make me nervous just talking to them one on one, so what do I do? I decide to tell my most personal shit to a whole room full of them at once. Great idea! I am definitely going to crash and burn.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Ⓥ The Psychology of Compassion

I, like most other people who care about animal rights, keep asking myself what we as activists can do to get through to the rest of the population. You see, I don't believe that people are inherently bad, or selfish, or uncaring. I also know that most people do not want to think about animal rights issues. So what is the best tactic for appealing to the goodness inside people to get them to take animals into consideration? It seems to me that there will never be any one technique that will work for everyone Each person has different things that appeal to them. Some react better to emotional appeals, others to logic, and there's no telling what specific things will seem important or logical to a particular person.

I think perhaps the best thing we can do is learn to understand more about human psychology. Having a better understanding of the way people's minds work could allow us to determine what causes our society to look at things the way it does, which might give us a better chance at fixing it. It would also allow us to decide how best to communicate with people as individuals, instead of trying to use the same techniques for everyone. Finally, if we are able to understand our own thought processes, it might make us a bit more resilient when it comes to dealing with people who are less than supportive of our cause.

I recently read Carl Jung's The Undiscovered Self, and there was a quote that I thought related quite nicely to the issue of animal rights.

"The effect on all individuals, which one would like to see realized, may not set in for hundreds of years, for the spiritual transformation of mankind follows the slow tread of the centuries and cannot be hurried or held up by any rational process of reflection, let alone brought to fruition in one generation. What does lie within our reach, however, is the change in individuals who have, or create, an opportunity to influence others of like mind in their circle  of acquaintance. I do not mean by persuading or preaching-I am thinking rather of the well-known fact that anyone who has insight into his own actions, and has thus found  access to the unconscious, involuntarily exercises an influence on his environment."

This is a concept that I think we all need to keep in mind. We are attempting to change something that has been a very basic part of our society up to this point. This is something that will, no doubt, take time. That doesn't make it any less worthwhile though. And even if we can't change the world overnight, we still have opportunities everyday to get through to people individually. Then those people have a chance to reach the people in their lives.

If you want to see some examples of the things I'm talking about here, you should check out this video of Melanie Joy discussing the psychology of eating meat. This was the thing that first got me thinking about learning psychology as a way to further animal rights causes.

Also, I've decided that I am going to use "Ⓥ" to denote my (hopefully) weekly animal rights posts from now on. So if you're interested in animal rights posts (or if you want to avoid them) just keep an eye out for it.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Poetry Slam

It looks like I'm going to be doing a Poetry Slam this Saturday. I probably should have mentioned it before, but I didn't officially decide that I was doing it until yesterday. Anyway, I need four poems for this one. So if anyone wants to help me choose which ones to use, it would be greatly appreciated. Here are all of my current poems. I have another one that I've been working on, but I'm not satisfied with it yet so I probably won't use that one.

Love Letter to an Imagined Soul Mate
Fire and Ice
Ripped Apart
Shape Shifter
Too Close

I used Adventure and Adulthood at previous slams, so I don't really want to do those. I'm currently leaning toward Connected (not Connection, I  think that one might be a bit too depressing), Too Close, and Shape Shifter. I need one more though, and I can't decided. I'm not likely to actually need all four anyway, but just in case.

Also, I'm really not sure why I'm doing this to myself again.........

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Getting Shit Done Paradox

I think I have mentioned this here before, but it's so weird/annoying that I thought I would go ahead and talk about it again (Also, I'm getting really low on inspiration these days, so it's basically this or nothing). Anyway, I can literally only manage to get motivated to do things when I already have things to do. If I have an entire day with nothing that I have to do, I will do exactly that; nothing! If I have an entire day when it seems like I won't have a free second all day, I will suddenly decide that I have to do SO MANY MORE THINGS!!!! It's annoying as shit, and it's kind of ruining my life. It causes me to not only waste perfectly good days during which I could accomplish lots of things that I want to do, but also to be late for everything all the time because "Wait I just have to do this one last thing!" So yeah, I can only do things when I don't have time to do them, make sense of that.
I'm expecting one of these guys to show up any time now. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

My Life Is Complete

You guys know how my life is really pathetic and kind of revolves around my favorite shows (specifically Supernatural and Arrow, at this point), right? Of course you do. Well, tonight is the new episode of Supernatural! and tomorrow is the new episode of Arrow! Also, my sister and I are still watching Supernatural on Netflix, and my mom and I have started watching Arrow. So yeah, that's about as good as it gets for me. How fucking sad is that? But I don't care because.......
Anyway, if you guys want to find out if Dean is going to totally lose his mind and also how the fuck Oliver survived, here's your chance! 

Monday, January 19, 2015

That's What You Get!

Remember forever ago when I applied for that job with the Fairmont police? But they wouldn't let me use non-leather gear, so I gave up on it? Well, apparently, whoever they hired instead of me didn't work out so well because, guess what? They're hiring again. Maybe if they weren't so fucking discriminatory they would have better luck with their employees! Just saying.
Also, as much as I convinced myself that it was a bad idea (and it probably really was) I still kind of wish I had gotten that job. I'm totally not bitter about it though. Totally. 

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Suggestion Box

I feel like I am getting worse and worse about coming up with interesting things to talk about here. I've been trying to think of a possible solution for this, but I'm not really getting anywhere. I've been contemplating a non-daily schedule, like maybe every other day or even just taking one or two days off per week, but I kind of hate to do that since I have been doing a halfway decent job of keeping up with it so far. Another possible idea was to have certain topics pre-selected for some days. I've already sort of decided that Fridays are my animal rightsy days, and that's been going pretty well so far. So does anyone have any suggestions for topics that they would like to see covered on a weekly basis?

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Back to Normal

I finally got to go back to kickboxing last night. It had been three weeks since I had been there, and I had forgotten how much I missed it. Last night it was me, my instructor, the other instructor who comes sometimes, and two other guys. The other girl wasn't there, so no one called me any vaguely insulting nicknames, which was nice. We didn't do anything terribly exciting; we mostly threw knees the whole time, but still it was good to be back. I did not, however, go to jiu jitsu this morning because I have other things to do today and I just really don't want to do them smelling like other people's feet.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Vegan Warrior

The first time I heard the term "vegan warrior" it was in this video, which I shared here once before.
The phrases immediately resonated with me. I just liked the sound as well as the implications of it. It seems to have really taken off since then though. The internet seems to be brimming with vegan warriors these days. If you type it in on Youtube, you will get video after video of people doing amazing things with their bodies, without the need for animal-based protein. You can also find merchandise in various online shops adorned with the words "vegan warrior". Personally, I think this is fantastic! The term itself, as well as the mindset that goes with it, breaks down some of the stereotypes about vegans, specifically that we are inherently weak and passive.   

I particularly like the idea of wearing things imprinted with it (I made myself a vegan warrior necklace, a while back, that I wear everyday) not only because other people can see it, but because it sorts of helps to remind me of who I want to be as well. It gives me a little extra push to try harder to be strong both physically and psychologically, and to stand up for my beliefs. 

However, I've found that a lot of people (primarily non-vegans) find the words "vegan" and "warrior" to be contradictory. Some even seem to find the thought of combining the two absolutely laughable. I know this from personal experience, when people have laughed after reading my necklace. I suppose I can see where they're coming from; on the surface it may seem like the two words don't make sense together. Veganism is all about nonviolence (at least to most people) and warriors are supposed to be all about violence, right? I don't really see it that way though. 

I suppose everyone who subscribes to this title probably has his or her own definition of what it really means. Here's what it means to me. First of all, anyone who chooses to represent a cause which is so far outside the norm is fighting a pretty intense battle, just because it's not a physical battle doesn't make it any less real. The more you think of yourself as a warrior the easier it becomes to fight for your beliefs, without starting to feel helpless. The second part, naturally, is the physical aspect. Whether the average person is willing to believe it or not, a vegan diet does amazing things for your body. You become healthier in general, develop a better immune system, have an easier time controlling your weight, and don't get tired as easily. If that doesn't make you a warrior, I don't know what would.   

I guess my point here is that I'm glad we vegans are finally starting to embrace our strength and show the rest of the world how powerful we really are. For so long we have been the meek, quiet people politely asking if you would like a pamphlet. Now we're starting to show people that there is so much more to us than that, and I think that's long overdue. 

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Well That's Disappointing

Well, I finally heard back from the place where I submitted my Moth Story. I'm sure you will all be shocked to hear that it was rejected. You know, it's really a shame that I always feel so inclined to do creative type things. I'm not one of those people who are good at handling rejection, which I think is pretty much a requirement for being successful at any sort of artistic endeavors. I tend to just say "Well fuck it then." and change my entire plan for my life (not that I ever have a real plan in the first place, but you know what I mean). Seriously though, how do people know when they should keep trying, and when they should just accept the fact that they aren't any good at whatever it is that they are trying to do? I just can't stand the idea of being one of those people who have the delusion that they're good something, when everyone else knows they're not.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015


You know how people are always posting various types of "inspiration" all over the internet? You know, quotes from famous people, anecdotes about people who have done amazing things, even those random little phrases designed to encourage you to do whatever it is you think you should be doing (working out, eating healthy, etc.). I have never found any of that stuff particularly inspiring though.

You know what I find inspiring? Fiction. I mean really, if I'm going to take advice from someone why would I pick an author who died fifty years ago?  If I'm going to try to emulate someone, why should it be some random person who climbed a mountain or something? My point is, real life is too damn boring to inspire me. If I'm going to try to change my life based on advice from anyone, it might as well be someone who saved the world or something. And, as far as I'm concerned, nothing can convince you to get in shape quite like watching people do things with their bodies that seem to (or actually do) defy the laws on physics.Of course, this is also the reason why my top career choices include things like; Demon Hunter, Vampire Slayer, and S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Okay, We're Even Now

You know what I totally forgot about? How fucking shitty it is when everything is covered in a sheet of ice! I kept thinking that what made last winter so horrible was just how cold it was, but now I remember that was only half of the problem. The other half was that when it did get warmer everything melted and then froze back into the slickest ice ever! Which just happens to be what we have going on today. It's just so much fun carrying pig buckets down the hill on solid ice, and then having to spend five minutes beating on the door to get it to open because the bottom half is frozen both to the ground and to the top half, and then having to beat on it again to get it to close. I guess this makes it me-1, winter-1.
You stop that right now, Donnie! 

Monday, January 12, 2015

Me-1, Winter-0

Remember when I was bitching about how I couldn't do pull-ups when it was really cold? Well, now that our cold spell seems to be over, I think I can safely say HAH! Even though it was miserably cold the last few days, I still managed to do just as many as I was doing before it got miserably cold. So fuck you, winter! I win!
I totally feel like Oliver Queen. Well....not really because afterward I had to put my gloves back on and curl my hands up inside until they stopped throbbing, but still. 

Sunday, January 11, 2015


Remember how excited I was about finding that better brand of pig food at the place in Mannington? Well, I should have know that the idea that I could get natural, vegan, pig food without a giant pain in the ass was too good to be true. I went back there early this week to buy more and (surprise, surprise) they were out of it. I asked when they would be getting more and the guy said "Well, I don't know what date." Not "day" like it would be sometime in the next week. "Date" like it might be sometime this year, maybe.

Then he said that he had some "mixer pellets" I could feed them. Because I was desperate, I said okay. Well, once I had already paid for them and someone put them in my car (because at this place you don't get to see what you're buying until it's too late) I noticed that they were, in fact, "beef feed" and were full of all sorts of nasty chemicals and shit, including something called "animal sterol". I looked it up online and still can't quite figure out exactly what it is, but I'm fairly certain it's neither vegan nor in any way healthy. I fed it to them for the last few days anyway, because I didn't have much of a choice.

Then yesterday I went to Tractor Supply in Clarksburg to get the stuff I had been feeding them before, because I don't know where else to get the other stuff. Guess what? They were sold out! Not only that, they were sold out of all pig food. So we got to drive clear the fuck to the Morgantown Tractor Supply. There is simply no reason why buying a bag of pig food should be this much of a fucking hassle.
Seriously, what the hell!?

Saturday, January 10, 2015


I don't know for sure if they had class last night or not. No one got a hold of me about it, and it was cold as fuck last night, so I just didn't go. Also, it was really cold as fuck this morning, so I didn't go to jiu jitsu either. Now I feel like a big lazy asshole. I am actually going to go grocery shopping today, but only because I absolutely have to.

Friday, January 9, 2015

The Herbivore's Dilemma Part 4: Dating

For me, this has been more of a hypothetical dilemma than one I have actually faced personally (due to the fact that romantic relationships always seem to elude me). For many vegans though, this is a pretty major issue. As vegans, we face enough hostility and misunderstanding from everyone else in our lives. We don't need to get that from our romantic partners as well. Not to mention the fact that, I assume for most people, being close to someone emotionally require a certain level of understanding of the things that are most important to the other person. For a vegan to date a non-vegan requires him or her to accept that fact the other person does not understand a fundamental part of who he or she is. I'm not saying that it can't be done, or that those relationships never work, but it automatically adds a certain distance between the two people.

The ideal situation, again I assume for most people, would be for vegans to date other vegans. That way they automatically have a connection because they share a basic worldview, along with the fact that they have probably faced a lot of the same struggles. The problem, of course, is that statistically there are so few of us. After all, there is more to finding love than sharing a worldview or having similar experiences. You have to have whatever that is that just causes some people to click. From my (limited) experience, this seems to be mostly a product of pure luck. Some people seem as if they would be perfect together, and yet feel nothing for each other. Other people know they are wrong for each other, and yet can't seem to stay apart. When you have a very limited number of people to choose from however, the odds of finding that inexplicable connection drop dramatically.

So the question becomes, is it better to be with someone who doesn't share a belief that is central to your being, or to wait around for someone you may never meet? I suppose, in a way, dating is always like that. You have to decide when to compromise and when to hold out for something more. For animal rights activists though, the whole thing is a little more intensified.

There are always the, not terribly uncommon, situations in which a vegan starts dating a non-vegan and that person eventually becomes vegan as well. I know many vegans have actually started out this way. Should we count on that though? What happens if you start dating an omnivore expecting him or her to come around eventually, and that never happens? Then you are left in a relationship with someone who you may very well be deeply in love with, but with whom you will never be truly happy.  

Even for those, like me, who haven't figured out the whole dating thing. This is pretty important question. It's difficult to decide whether it's even worth trying to get to know someone when there is a good chance that, even if you did manage to build a relationship with that person, it would only lead to pain down the road. Is it worth the risk of hoping that they will learn to understand? Or is it better to hope for some sort of miracle in which a fellow vegan who shares your; sense of humor, life goals, hobbies, etc. just falls out of the sky?

As far as I know, this is the only book about dating written specifically for vegans. I read it years ago and, while it didn't provide a great deal of concrete advice, it did offer a sense of not being alone in this whole thing.


Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Snow Day

I have been snowed in at my house for the past couple of days. This means that 1- I'm not getting paid, which is shitty, and 2- I've been getting pretty bored, which is both good and bad. You see I really hate being bored so, if I get bored enough, I eventually find something to do. Today I actually broke out my clay that I haven't used in months. It had been so long since I used it that it had hardened, even though it was in a sealed bag. It took a long time to get it back into a workable consistency, but after that I made several new pendants. I'm pretty pleased with the way most of them turned out. I'm thinking, since I still haven't figured out how to do metal work, I might as well keep trying with the clay.

I'm seriously considering trying to list some stuff on Etsy again. I've recently gotten a decent number of new views on Flying Pigs Jewelry's Facebook page, and I'm wondering if maybe I gave up on it too soon.
Also, I had this kind of interesting thought today about clay. Making things from clay requires use of all the elements. The clay itself is Earth, Water makes it pliable, Air dries it, and Fire makes it strong. I don't know, I just think that's kind of cool. 

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Look How Much of a Cold I Don't Have!

My sister kept telling me that my almost-like-a-cold-but-not-a-cold-thing was, in fact, just a cold. Well, I didn't believe her because 1-I haven't had a cold in forever. My immune system is impenetrable! and 2- the fact that it started right when I started reading that book. So I decided to do an experiment. As much as I wanted to just push through and finish the book, I decided not to read it this morning and see what happened. Well, I'm not completely back to normal, but I'm infinitely better than I was yesterday. I'm now just sort of vaguely stuffy, instead of miserable and disgusting. So I've decided fuck Pet Sematary! I'm just going to reread Hemlock Grove.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Book, Why Hast Thou Forsaken Me?

I think a book poisoned me, you guys! I finished reading my last book sooner than I thought I would and didn't order a new one in time. Ever since my computer broke, I've been reading every morning while I eat breakfast and try to wake up. So not having a book is big problem for me. I looked through my books and found the one book that I already had, that I hadn't read yet; Stephen King's Pet Sematary. I bought it at some thrift store a while back and just never got around to reading it. As soon as I opened it, I realized that at some point, either before or after I got it, it had been wet. All of the pages have huge stains around the edges, and are kind of wrinkly. I knew I probably shouldn't read it because, for some reason, I have a ridiculous reaction to musty books. (I know this from my time at Goodwill.) But I thought "Oh, it won't be that bad." But it is! It is that bad! For the last three days I've had this almost-like-a-cold-but-not-quite-a-cold-thing. My nose keeps running, and my eyes keep watering, and my head feels like it's trying to explode, and the only thing that I can think of is that it's full of book mold.

Of course the smart thing to do would be to stop reading the book of death and hope that my symptoms go away but 1-my new book still isn't here, and 2-now I'm half way through this book and really want to know what happens. So if someone finds me dead with book mold spores wafting out of my ears, you'll know that it was my own fault. Why have you done this to me, book? All I did was love you!

Sunday, January 4, 2015


Sorry there was no post yesterday. Saturdays are usually my recap of class on Friday anyway, and I haven't had class for the past couple of weeks. Supposedly it's back on for next week, so we'll see what happens. 

Anyway, I didn't have time to write because I went to jiu jitsu in the morning and then I met up with my friend, Rachel. We have known each other pretty much our entire lives, but hadn't seen each other for a long time. So we sat at Starbucks and talked for a couple of hours, and sort of caught up on everything that's been going on with us. I always forget how nice it is to talk to someone who 1- has known me forever, and 2- actually deals with a lot of the same issues I do (although she seems to handle them much better I do). It's a pleasant experience being able to say what you're thinking without getting that "What the fuck is wrong with you?" look. After that we went to see Wild, which made me want to go on some great soul-searching adventure. I think mine would have to be something that doesn't require me to be without running water for months at a time though. 

Friday, January 2, 2015

The Herbivore's Dilemma Part 3- Health

I think the issue of health and fitness as it relates to veganism is something that is a dilemma for me much more so than the average vegan. I'm not sure that most vegans give it that much thought at all, aside form having to deal with obnoxious comments from omnivores; "Where do you get your protein?" "What about B12?" etc. It's something that I think about a lot though, so I might as well write about it.

There seems to be a general consensus among most animal rights activists that the best way to open people up to the idea of a vegan diet is to show them that vegan food can be just as delicious as it's animal-based counterpart. Many vegans do a great deal of outreach, and influence a great number of people, simply by bringing food to various social events. I have no doubt that this strategy is very effective; I have seen people's reactions when they taste good vegan food.

Another common tactic though is to focus on informing people about the health benefits of a plant-based diet. I am of the belief, and the research seems to agree, that even less-than-healthy vegan food is far better health-wise than the same type of food made from animal products. However, the more healthy a person's food choices are, the more obvious their good health will be to those around them.

The problem is that, at least in my mind, these two things conflict with each other. The better your food is for you, the less it is going to taste like what the average person is used to eating. And the only way to make food (whether vegan or not) taste good, at least by most people's standards, is to add unhealthy things to it; sugar, oil, bleached flour, etc.

Then, of course, there is the "scrawny vegan" stereotype. I personally am probably more bothered by this than anything else that is said about vegans. People have this weird obsession with protein (which, by the way, is not a problem for us. Protein is in just about everything and there are a multitude of excellent plant sources which are far healthier than any animal sources.) and assume that vegans are physically incapable of building muscle, or strength despite the many examples to the contrary. I've decided to do whatever I can to dispel this myth. The problem is, the more effort you put into taking care of your health and your body, the more you set yourself apart from the average person. I find that while trying to defend against the "scrawny vegan" stereotype, I end up encouraging the "weird vegan" stereotype.

I'm honestly not sure which is more effective, but I've never been much of a conformist. So I would rather show people the real benefits they can get from veganism, rather than trying to show that we are "just like them" or that our food can taste as good as their food. So maybe my food doesn't seem all that appealing to most people, and maybe I spend a bit more time obsessing about my body than most, but I plan to take full advantage of the benefits of my diet and so far I've seen an awful lot of them.
Mindy Collette and Robert Cheeke. 

Thursday, January 1, 2015

15 for 2015

Here is my list of goals for the coming year.

1-Some of these depend on my being able to afford to do them, so I guess the first thing would have to be making enough money to be able to do everything else.

2-Get at least most of the cats fixed before they have a chance to reproduce any more.

3-Start working on my degree again, even if only online.

4-Get the rest of those fucking wood chips into the pig field before summer (aka mudsoon season) comes back around.

5-Paint my hideous floor, and hopefully start working on some of the other redecorating type stuff I want to do.

6-Get something published......somewhere.....

7-Have an actual relationship.

8-Figure out the whole metalsmithing thing. I'm not giving up on that.

9-Seriously decide what I want to do with my life....for real.

10-Maybe get one of the eight thousand tattoos I've been wanting to get forever.

11-Have a real fight. Not like pick a fight with someone; like a planned, legitimate fight.

12-Get good enough that I feel like I could win said fight.

13-Go back to Farm Sanctuary. I've been saying that for years, but it's really depressing how long it's been since I've been there.

14-Start doing things that I enjoy. Of course, this requires that I first figure out what things I enjoy.

15-Be able to do at least one of these ......
The push-up things that is; not Oliver queen. Although that would be okay too. 

Happy New Year.