comfort food sunday

January 31, 2011

If you are at all interested in food a/o restaurants that I might recommend, yesterday was a highly satisfactory day in terms of the grub I consumed. I also shared it with some rad folks but surely to those readers who may happen upon this blog post, food is probably a bit more interesting.

So, this is how my Sunday went. Meal #1 was brunch as a joint called Chavella's, which is a great mexican joint not far from my apartment. It has also been rated one of the best Mexican restaurants in the city. I didn't grow up in California or anywhere that had a high population of Mexicans, so I will admit I am no expert on the subject, but the food was damn good. We were a group of 4, which I think is sort of average but if you try to go here with a larger group, it might be pretty difficult. You would have more luck with take out and bringing it to a friend's place.  Despite the odd seating arrangement, it did not impair the meal to the slightest. Everyone was thrilled with the overall experience. 

First, we had guacamole that was served with homemade tortilla chips. No complaints there. I had something listed as "new" but forgot the name and its not listed on their site. Eggless Platter? I dont know, but recommended highly. In the middle was a stack of small tortillas surrounded by a bunch of sides like potatoes, veggies, guac, tortilla covered in spicy green sauce... I cant remember what else, not by any fault of Chavellas. It looked like food enough for two but I ate it all. The only downside was that  it was hard to get a refill on coffee and when we had to ask for hot sauce, it took a while mostly because the place was so packed and it took a minute to get someone's attention. 
Overall, seriously good stuff!

Meal # 2 consisted of a staple in my diet these days and one of the best things about living in Bed.Stuy. I stopped and grabbed some doubles from a place called Melanie’s right around the corner from me. Doubles are pictured above and are both amazingly delicious and amazingly cheap. They are definitely not on the healthier end of spectrum in terms of food but they sure make my taste buds happy.

Meal # 3 was by chance and mostly because of cold and not hunger. After walking at least a mile in freezing cold (my own fault, of course) to a friend’s shindig in Greenpoint and only two short blocks before reaching our destination, we spot Brooklyn Mac and decide to go in. By that point, we were both practically numb and the idea of eating hot, gooey mac’n cheese was irresistible. We split a  small”King’s County” which is the most basic mac n cheese they serve, vegan style . It was not only inexpensive but INCREDIBLE. I dont think I’ve eaten mac n cheese anywhere nearly as good as this ever, including my non-vegan days. Seriously. GO! They also have a plethora of toppings that you an add too. 

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What to do on a snow day?

February 11, 2010

  • Make soup (eg: Curried Sweet Potato Lentil Soup. Num num num!)

  • Organize something (eg: knitting patterns)

  • Knit a little (eg: Remoy’s Valentine sweater)

  • Upload a bundle of new yarns to our website (like Classic Elite and new Noro yarns, Sekku and Aya ).

  • Watch the snow come down endlessly.

  • Play scrabble with Remoy.

  • Have a snowball fight with the rad new mitts my mom made. She’s so awesome that she knit us each a pair.

yesterday

March 3, 2009

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i have been trying to read Diet for a New America by John Robbins. I have been able to read a little bit recently, two books down (No One Belongs Here More Than You: Stories by Miranda July and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer). The non-fiction isn’t quite working as well as I’d like.  But anyway its eerie because the book was published in 1987 and it reads today and so very relevant… and somehow in between then and now, so very little has changed to make life on this earth more hospitable. This book is a best seller apparently, I would love to pass it along to vegan skeptics except my copy is butchered with pen and pencil marks, although i am less than 100 pages in. It is ‘spiritual’ at times but it doesnt irritate me. He ties it together more or less in regards to animal rights and the environment. If you read this book, as my friend Jamey puts it, you can’t call yourself a humanitarian or an environmentalist if you continue to eat meat and consume dairy. The dairy industry does more damage to the atmosphere than oil. That my friends is a fact. Spread the awareness. I can’t even imagine what tomorrow would look like if we suddenly stopped partaking in these things. I know its not realistic, we are creatures of habits and there are certain lines that each of us as individuals cannot/wont cross. Hey, I knit with wool. That isn’t very vegan of me. BUT I am trying to educate myself on this facet… because denial a/o  ignorance never got us anywhere. Argh.

Have you heard of  The China Study? Its awesome and accessible to the masses. The China Study is a book you should read if you want to learn about nutrition. Period. It dissects all aspects of consuming both animal protein and dairy. Its a terrifying read and well worth it.

 

Short post. Will try to keep on this more often. I started training this week for the Buffalo marathon (May 29) this week but now my lungs are half full with mucus and I will be going to the doctor monday. Its a real bummer. About 4 months away…. 

 

The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking. -John Kenneth Galbraith

horsey harry

October 16, 2008

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First things first. The poster is brilliantbrilliantbrilliant. Its both striking and smart.

Secondly, I don’t mean to be on a vegan spiel but recently that seems to be my nitch. So, be warned but please read on.

I went and saw ‘Equus’ tonight with James after eating at Zen Palate. Good company, good eatins, good weather. (Rode the bike for the first time in a bit, that rain.. it makes me into one lazy blob…anyway beauteous fall NYC day.)

Don’t know Equus? Me neither until tonight and this is more or less my immediate reaction.

So, this ‘normal’ 17 year old boy blinds a bunch of horses and this is so incredibly horrific to people.  Yah, horses are pretty awesome, it seems pretty fucked up to me too. But the jury wants to put him in jail for life. The parents of this kid have individual break downs more or less because they are seen to be at fault by outsiders. I mean they raised a blinder of horses, right? Ehhm. GROSS.  But jail for life? That’s pretty intense considering the fact that this doesn’t even typically happen for gang rape or matters of this sort. Anyway, it was written in the 1970’s in England and based on a true story… how much I’m not sure but in any case we can assume that the people in the town where this took place reacted quite venomously.  The story is really dark and complex which makes it enjoyable. I’m sure its a good read too.  I’d like to give it a shot not so much because I like reading plays but you know I can be hard of hearing and I missed a lot in that theater foh shoh.  

I swear I didn’t only focus on the vegan thing throughout the one to two hour play. But I can’t help it when the focal point of the work was animal abuse. The suppressed sexuality is a whole other can of worms.

Animal abuse is FUCKED UP, right?  Most people will admit that they have a harder time seeing an animal in pain versus a human.  But its such a contradiction! Do you have any idea what kind of torture the chicken you go through before you eat them? Google ‘de-beaking’ if you want to know more but it is chopping off part of the birds beak so that they can’t peck each other since they live is flocks up to 80,000. According to John Robbins it ‘requires cutting through highly sensitive tissue, similar to the tender sensitive flesh under human fingernails and causes the animals severe pain.’  Remember slamming your fingers in the car door when you were a kid? I did that a lot it seems, always my thumb on the right hand. That shit SUCKS. The thought of chopping off a birds beak…. no pain reliever….nada… is plain ole disgusting.

AND that isn’t even the full story, not even close. Over half a million baby chicks (males that egg warehouses have no use for) are disposed of by being thrown into plastic bags to suffocate….everyday. Any other way may cost money so… profits profits profits.  Capitalism at its prime I tell ya! Think it a bit strange that a huge manufacturer of pencils and helicopters also invests in chicken? Nah, man. Its a profitable business!

My question is… is it because the horses had to suffer and were blinded rather than facing a ‘painless’ death that it is so disturbing to people? If you have the idea in your head that the animals you eat do not suffer relentlessly before making it to your plate… think again.  Even its just a horse thing… what about GELATIN?

Here are a few quotes from ‘Diet for a New America’ by John Robbins that help emphasize my point:

  • The way we treat animals is indicative of the way we treat out fellow humans.
  • A reliance on instinct is very different from a lack of ability to feel pain.
  • We have a very convenient and self-serving way of defining intelligence.

You don’t have to be an animal rights activist or even an animal lover to think that its fucked up.  Animals have a central nervous system they feel physical pain, when blinded for example. They also are capable of love and of GRIEF which is what catches the psychiatrist up. That’s all. Maybe a bit long winded but that’s more or less it. If you go on too long, people stop thinking your smart and you come off as a fanatic. No thanks.

Technical stuff about the play?

WELL….It was a bit weird to see Daniel Radcliffe in the role and to see him naked.  He has to be under loads of pressure to shed that Harry Potter skin and he…. tried pretty hard. I’m not trying to be critical, he was good. He just tried hard.  The role didn’t seem to come naturally to him. Whoever played the mother wasn’t such a good actress. Yes, she was a distressed ex-school teaching religion mum….. but eh. She was too desperate, her voice was too strained. Meh.

BUT

That psychiatrist played by the mean fat uncle in Harry Potter (Richard Griffiths)… he was ON POINT.