Today’s news: Jon Stewart breaks my heart.

For a Daily Show stunt surrounding the Madison, Wisc. labor protests, this poor camel is dragged around in the cold until he gets his foot caught in a gate and topples to the ground. In the video filmed before this one, you can see 1.) You “handle” a camel by hits to the jugular?; and 2.) the trainer actually walks the camel right into the gate. Genius. I’m sure it was so totally worth it for whatever amazing segment this was supposed to be a part of. I doubt it will ever see the light of television though, right? Man, Jon Stewart, I used to love you.


Hello, friends! It’s WTF Wednesday!  »

It is finals week! For me, this no longer holds any fear because I am in grad school and every week is finals week. “Bring it on!” I say as my tears smudge the ink of yet another double-spaced monstrosity that I cannot bear to finish. “Nailed it!” I yell as I accidentally reply-all with an embarrassing email in which I beg for an extension. “Is this worth it?” I ask as I drink yet another bottle of tequila, watching myself cry in the mirror. Be brave, future graduates! Slay those finals like the people slew the other people in that one movie. And then triumph and revel in your victory! Uh-oh, this pep talk has really broken down now, hasn’t it? Just go out there and do it! And be awesome! OK, let’s talk about squirrels, because if there’s anything this paragraph has taught me, it’s that I should probably not pin my dreams on a career in motivational speaking.

You know how when you think about Russian people, you think about alcoholics? Now you know how stereotypes work! Although the thing is, stereotypes are often based upon very real things. As a Russian person, I can tell you that lots of Russians have alcohol problems, but don’t take my word for it because I am not a scientist or the president of Russia. The president of Russia, in fact, is so concerned about the nation’s drinking problem that he has hired a CGI squirrel to show you how dangerous drinking is. Why a squirrel, you ask? That is a very good question for which I have no answer. I have no idea how a squirrel, no matter how mangy it looks, is going to convince me to put down my bottle of apple-infused vodka,* not even if it speaks in a drunk voice and jumps around and around an empty white room. If you don’t speak Russian, you may think you are watching an amazing short about the plight of an animal imprisoned in a white room, possibly by the KGB. Not so! The squirrel is actually incredibly wasted and discussing such far-ranging topics as “We saw his wife and he thought it was the devil so he said let’s shoot her and then we will mark this occasion.” When I first saw this video, I had no idea what it was about and thought it was a warning about psychosis. I got out my DSM to see if I could diagnose the squirrel, before realizing that if I am going to diagnose animated Russian squirrels, perhaps I am the one I needed to worry about.

Or perhaps I need to worry about the good people putting camels into their Christmas pageants. I have been to a couple of Christmas pageants in my day and while I have seen some bad acting—fifth-graders! Why did I pay you $2.50 when you cannot pay me the courtesy of learning your fucking lines?—I have never felt physically threatened by the production, probably because none of the pageants I have seen featured a live camel! Yes, friends, a live camel is the one thing your Christmas pageant is missing. What, there’s two things missing? Your Christmas pageant isn’t a hit unless the camel topples over into the audience? The camel had a sore knee and lost her balance (yes, there is video). It’s a good thing no one was injured because if anyone had, you can bet that there would be crowds cheering wildly for her death, regardless of her bearing zero culpability for this fiasco.

Apparently the company that provided her for the pageant is a fucking horror show and should be shut down immediately: its owner has been jailed for selling panthers as well as forcing animals to perform high dives. WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU? THAT HORSE DID NOT WANT TO JUMP OFF THE DIVING BOARD? You know how I know? Because the animals performing the high dives were reportedly shrieking and defecating as they did so. Diving boards are fucking horrifying. I remember my dad tried to get me to jump off of one once by showing me how much fun it was. He did it wrong and came out crying because the water—instead of accepting him gently—punched him right in the balls. He never forgave me.

Dredging up all those memories is a bummer, dude. Let’s look at this picture of a hamster to cheer ourselves up. Kinda makes all your troubles disappear, doesn’t it? Have an awesome day, and please send me links for next week!

*Not en vogue in Russia, where we drink our vodka straight! “Like real man,” my father says.


Thanks to our sponsors, two sad dogs and cake in a jar, it’s this week’s link-o-rama!  »

A long-tailed macaque living in Bali adopted a lost kitten! He just found the kitten wandering around his home in Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary in Bali, and brought the kitten back to his troop (“a troop of macaques”), and now they are pals. Please excuse your Vegansaurus, whose eyes have begun leaking. [photo by Anne Young]

Events! Events events events!
We already told you about Dusker tonight at Hayes Valley Farm—really, why aren’t you there now, hippie? And tomorrow is Sábado Gigante!, a.k.a. the start of Oakland’s Eat Real Festival. Now here are even more ways to spend your time!

Vegans in the Washington, D.C. metro area should head out to the annual Columbia Heights Day, which happens tomorrow, Saturday Aug. 28 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Harriet Tubman Elementary Field at 11th and Kenyon Sts. NW. Why? Because at 3:30 there’s a Sticky Fingers cupcake-eating contest on the second stage!! Live out one of your Vegansaurus’ dreams! Or at least take a photo for us DEAR LORD.

VERY IMPORTANT: Dino Bike at the Hemlock on Sunday, Aug. 29 at 9 p.m. Pay $5 and see our Laura, Jonas and possibly Jordan—plus other guaranteed-cramazing humans—do things on stage that you could not possibly imagine. There will be vegan cupcakes for free and booze for sale and all the money raised goes to pay for sweet, sweet Hazel’s nauseatingly expensive surgery. BE THERE!

On Monday, Aug. 30, the Green Arcade bookstore in San Francisco will host a free discussion with Chris Palmer, author of Shooting in the Wild: An Insider’s Account of Making Movies in the Animal Kingdom. It sounds like Chris Palmer does our favorite thing: “pulls back the curtain on the dark side of wildlife filmmaking, revealing an industry driven by money, sensationalism, extreme risk-taking, misrepresentation, staging, fabrication, and even abuse and harassment of animals,” actually naming names! Of course he also offers solutions and praises the people who are not total dicks (hint: Bear Grylls is not on the “good” list). The discussion begins at 7 p.m. at the Green Arcade, 1680 Market St. at Gough Street.

On Sunday, Aug. 29, LGBT Compassion will hold a peaceful demonstration against animal cruelty—specifically, the live-chicken vendor—from 9 to 11 a.m. at the Northeast corner of the Heart of the City Farmers Market at U.N. Plaza. For further information, visit their website, and please RSVP if you plan to attend!

West Contra Costa Adult Education will offer a series on vegan cuisine this fall, beginning on Sept. 14 with “Italian style.” Each class meets once for four hours at the Richmond campus and costs $45. Enrollment is limited to 16 students, so you might think about registering sooner than later. Chef Panos Ly of Symphonie Vegan Restaurant in Point Richmond will lead the class.

News! Articles and essays and news!
A woman was caught attempting to smuggle a tiger cub from Thailand to Iran. The three-month-old cub had been drugged and stuffed in her suitcase—along with some stuffed toy tigers, for camouflage? He’s now recovering at a wildlife conservation center in Bangkok, and DNA testing should reveal more precisely where he came from. Residents of Taiji, a.k.a. “the place from The Cove where they murder all the dolphins,” are totally nonchalant about the documentary and its effects. “They’re not going to stop the hunts,” says a councilman, basically because it’s tradition and also dolphin is tasty. Neat! “You race camels, why not milk them?” Excellent question, Occident-man! And what was Orient-man’s response? He didn’t have one, so the western dudes went out and began camel-exploitation for themselves. Now they are milked in metal stalls by automated pumps, just like number-one most delicious American cows! It can’t come to the U.S. fast enough. What we won’t get, because the FDA are total Puritan prudes, are eating-cows fed with wine to make their flesh taste even better when we devour it. I mean, pigs get to drink beer, why can’t cows have some red wine with their all-natural COWFEED 3000?

What’s been going on with the Great Egg Recall of aught-10? This week we learned that the FDA rejected a vaccine for hens that British egg producers have been using for over a decade and that would have cost “less than a penny per a dozen eggs.” Ha ha whoops! Your Vegansaurus loves the cheap choices: “We have a problem with Salmonella infecting these eggs!” “How can we solve it?” “We could stop feeding chickens bone meal, maybe.” “But that’s like recycling! And it makes them grow SO FAST!” “What about making the cages we force the hens into a little larger, or not smashing so many of them into those tiny cages at once?” “And lose production space? No way!” “What about pasteurizing the fuck out of the poisonous death-eggs, then putting them in ice cream and mayonnaise?” “BRILLIANT! We won’t even have to disclose that on the food labels! The company is saved!” A deli meat company recalled nearly 400,000 pounds of its products due to contamination with Listeria, but that was really hard to pay attention to this week.

Hey L.A., have you been to Millions of Milkshakes: Our Brianna writes: “IT IS SO FUCKING YUMMY I WANTED TO CAMP OUT THERE. I went two times in the span of four days. Yeah, it’s really tacky, but I think it pretty adequately encompasses LA culture. I got a peanut butter-oreo shake the first time, and a peanut butter-banana shake the second time. Best milkshakes I’ve ever had.” Ooh, celebrity vegan shakes! Ooh again: a totally polite and helpful thread on Serious Eats about cooking for vegans and omnivores in the same kitchen—they even discuss sharing pans! How heartwarming. Hey Las Vegans (har har), your life just got better thanks to Steve Wynn, who’s expanded (read: brought into existance) the vegan dishes on all his hotels’ menus. Finally, an interview with Jack Norris of Vegan Outreach by (the infamous) Rhys Southan. Naturally your Vegansaurus recommends ignoring the comments, one of which implies that nectarines are certain squirrels’ only food source and that to eat said nectarines is tantamount to murdering said squirrels.

One of Scott “model-senator” Brown’s staffers found a cat on the street in Washington, D.C., and she has since been named Lucky and become the office kitty. Look, there are photos! This is arguably the most selfless act performed by any member of the Senate in several years, and Scott Brown didn’t actually rescue the cat himself. Even suffering the pressures of political life, Lucky is considerably better off than nearly half the pets in Coachella Valley: 44 percent of the 40,000 animals who have been left at shelters in Riverside County were euthanized this year, and Save-a-Pet of Desert Hot Springs, a no-kill shelter, has no room for animals. Thanks, Depression 2.0!

So which would you rather eat: Magical salmon genetically engineered by AquaBounty Corp. to grow twice as quickly as evolutionarily engineered salmon by natural selection; or willingly donated human meat? Whatever, our “agricultural empire” is DOOMED, DOOMED anyway, let’s just eat (easily veganized and very tasty) jar cake to keep the end-of-the-world panic attacks down for another day.

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