Radio hour: KQED’s “Forum” featuring Mark Bittman on his new book and his vegan-ish diet!  »

Last Wednesday, we totally missed someone awesome-ish on the radio: Mark Bittman! He hates industrially produced food! And “wholesome” food, namely produce and whole grains. “Plants are clearly more sustainable that processed food or animal products,” he says, with which we obviously agree. To him, “‘Wholesome food’…basically means unprocessed fruits and vegetables—legumes and nuts and grains and seeds.”

He also discusses his views on meat consumption, on quantity and sustainability—he says that “Americans kill 10 billion animals a year, and globally it’s 60 billion.” Bittman doesn’t address the emotional aspect—his turn toward mainly vegan eating was inspired by health and environmental concerns—so we will: MARY MOTHER OF GOD 10 BILLION ANIMALS. Greatest Country in the World.

Michael Krasny, the host, notes that Bittman wasn’t able to update his 1999 cookbook Fish because too many of the 70 species covered are endangered or nearly extinct. Ha ha 11 years later and almost 70 species of fish have become “endangered” or “nearly extinct”! Fishing is so awesome, not at all wasteful or insane.

You should listen to the rest of the interview yourself, it’s great-ish and full of facts. Find loads of Mark Bittman’s veg recipes on his website.

Update: Friend of Vegansaurus and guest writer Vi Zahajszky met Mr. Bittman as part of her clearly very demanding and terrible job at KQED. We are sooo envious.

[photo of paella with tomatoes, plus recipe!, by Flickr user Pabo76]


Well I say! It’s time for the adorability and tragedy of this week’s link-o-rama!  »

BUNNIES BUNNIES BUNNIES! Adopt yourself a bunny from the East Bay SPCA—4651 Gleason Dr. in Dublin—at tomorrow’s Adopt-a-Rabbit Day, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.! Five different rescue groups will have rabbits there for you to fall in love with, because rabbits are like cats for a dog-person: they’re super-cute and loving, but also neat and tidy, and they like to have time for themselves, and when they tire of your adoration they will just hop away, but their displays of affection are ridiculously exuberant. You guys if I don’t get to adopt a rabbit soon I WILL EXPLODE WITH YEARNING. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. Back to the matter at hand: please contact Anne with questions.

Did you know that Mission Mission features adoptable animals of the SF SPCA every Friday? This week’s future-best-pals are Shortstop and Sassy!

Super-duper vegan-friendly events!
Tomorrow’s Beehive Market is having a free ice cream social, featuring Scream Sorbet and Rocket Ship Vegan Ice Cream! Get over there sometime between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. because missing free ice cream would be SO STUPID, goodness.

OK, it’d be cool to miss it if you were attending Animal Place’s Barn Warming, instead! It runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at AP’s new facility (600 acres!) in Grass Valley; you can meet the animals, shop at the Compassionate Marketplace, turn your children—should you have any—loose in the Kids’ Corner, and buy a vegan lunch for $5. You cannot bring your own food or animals, however. Details and driving directions here.

Hello, Bijou the bunny! What’s that? You’re available for adoption at tomorrow’s Adopt-a-Bunny event at the East Bay SPCA? My word!

Vegan-pertinent articles for perusal
The FDA released a set of guidelines on the use of antibiotics in eatin’ animals this week; unfortunately (and as usual), they’re late to the party, fucking weak, and only offering them for “comment,” anyway, because the FDA is ineffectual. KQED addressed the subject on Forum as well, though the conversation mostly gave me the angries. Do you think, with only four companies controlling THE ENTIRE MEAT MARKET—and becoming bigger conglomerates daily—that they are going to change any of their business practices without being forced?

Well at least the state of Ohio isn’t totally rotten: the Humane Society made a deal with Governor Ted Strickland to implement a number of the demands that were moving toward becoming a ballot measure (like our Prop. 2 in 2008) in November, which HSUS will put on hold while the state phases out veal crates and gestation crates, and bans things like strangling farm animals and transporting downer cows for slaughter. More details here.

What’s new in the ocean (besides the great big fucking oil spill, coverage of which by The Rachel Maddow Show has been quite good, incidentally)? They’ve got magic-science salmon soooo close to FDA approval. These fish have been genetically engineered to “grow to market size in 16 to 18 months” instead of the usual three years! HOORAY! Other magic-science water-breathers include Paul the octopus, who lives in Oberhausen, Germany; described by Der Spiegel as “cuddly,” Paul is nationally adored for his “ability” to “predict” Germany’s World Cup wins. Nothing in that sentence was a lie. Now, would you like to cement your hatred of SeaWorld, and keeping orcas in captivity? Read this article about Tilikum in Outside magazine; it’s unbelievably heartbreaking (also, enraging).

Clementine, you darling! Are you looking to get adopted as well? Any time between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m., at 4651 Gleason Dr. in Dublin? You got it!

It’s summer, and that means composting! Seattle now requires all takeout containers and cutlery to be compostable, and Serious Eats has an at-home composting guide. Seems simple enough, really. Plus it’s good to try to reduce your garbage, considering our obscene carbon footprint.

It’s summer, and that means eating (kidding, every season means eating, duh)! Jeremy Fox will include charcuterie—with an ear- and skin-focus!—with his “plant-based” cuisine at Plum when it opens in September. GROSS and BOO. Spice Kit opened in the FiDi and looks to have decent veg options; Mission Chinese Food is open and is offering (apparently) four vegan options, plus THEY DELIVER, OH MAN; the Village Voice even did a little roundup of delicious NYC-area veg dishes.

Miss Tisha! Is it true that people can bring their rabbits for introductions to potential new best friends at Adopt-a-Bunny day as well? And the East Bay SPCA is offering free bunny nail trims, too? How wonderful! [all photos courtesy East Bay SPCA]

Hey the Richmond, would you like your own farmer’s market? Richmond District Greens is working hard to set that up—help your neighbors and everyone wins! Fun fact: part of the Richmond used to be known as Beer Town, and it was quite wicked.

Our own Sarah E. Brown was on the radio, discussing veganism, the Tree of Life, the Healing Patch, and your Vegansaurus! We’re the famous-est, you guys.



Holy smokes! Did you hear this crazy story on KQED’s “California Report” this morning? It’s nuts! Here are some details not included in the story: While people had been “stocking” lakes in Kings Canyon (pre-National Park) since the 1800s with non-native trout—the lakes there had never had fish—in the 1950s and ’60s, trout were dropped by airplane into high-altitude lakes that had never before been seen fish. These lakes—up to 12,000 feet in altitude—were the primary habitat of the mountain yellow-legged frog, which at that point was super-abundant.

The trout—which were DROPPED BY AIRPLANE, exclusively for SPORT FISHING—found the mountain yellow-legged frog tadpoles to make delicious food-meals, and gobbled them up, which rapidly decimated the population. Consequently, there are very, very few of them left, and they’ve been designated “endangered.” Of course, the frogs’ disappearance didn’t just affect the frogs; it upset the entire ecosystem in and around the lakes where they’d been living.

Now, park rangers have to get rid of the trout, with as few non-fish casualties as possible in the process (that second clause is extrapolation). Any of that sound familiar? According to the reporter in the radio story, the rangers first tried electrocuting the trout to death, but found that method to be “too expensive and time-consuming.” Emphasis MINE. Their new plan is to poison the fish with something that’s nontoxic to people, so all that revenue-generating (assumption!) sport-fishing can continue during the “controlled extermination” or however they prefer to call it (pescacide?).

Obviously the fish never should have been put into those lakes. But now that the government is finally making an effort to redress the ecosystem, what’s fair to this generation of trout, who are only doing what any trout would do? And, seriously, electrocution? Poisoning? Dropping them into lakes from airplanes? All of that is fucking disgusting. People are so gross and terrible; we can never leave well enough alone. Even “native people” screw shit up.

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