vegansaurus!

05/03/2012

Paul Shapiro presents: debating ducks, changing climate, and funny felines!  »


It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! Yay!

Amazingly, even though they’ve had more than seven years to find an alternative to force-feeding, a small gaggle of foie gras enthusiasts in California are trying to repeal the upcoming July ban on the force-feeding of ducks for foie gras (and the sale of products from force-fed animals). I did a 20-minute debate about this on Southern California’s NPR affiliate yesterday, and an hour-long debate on Northern California’s NPR affiliate today.

Speaking of feeding, as far as what we’re feeding ourselves, the title of the Forbes article says it all: “Eating Less Meat Is World’s Best Chance For Timely Climate Change, Say Experts.” Meatless Monday recipes, anyone?

Some good news: HSUS’s Smithfield exposé video yesterday won a 2012 Webby Award! (The Webbys are kind of like an Oscars of online content.) We’re psyched.

Finally, last week’s video was the double-dutching dog. This week it’s the treadmill-loving cats.

04/10/2012

Paul Shapiro presents: Ducks in the newspaper and cats in bed with you!  »


It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! Yay!

In an LA Times op-ed today, the chairman of California Democratic Party lays a strong smack-down on those who want to repeal the state’s upcoming ban on force-feeding ducks for foie gras.

Food service giant Sodexo reports on the Meatless Monday efforts in its cafeterias: “Of the 74 percent who offered Meatless Monday, the majority of providers, 76 percent, said that the campaign was ‘easy’ or ‘very easy’ to implement and 65 percent said they will continue to promote the campaign with an additional 24 percent noting that they may continue.”

Speaking of, the Des Moines Register notes that demand for meat is falling due to many forces, including both the popularity of Meatless Mondays, as well as “a more powerful animal rights movement.” The article illustrates this by saying “Wayne Pacelle, president of the Humane Society of the United States, took his agency from its traditional role as protector of the nation’s dogs and cats into a political activist organization that has pushed, with partial success, referendums against animal confinements.”

(While on that topic, Michigan papers reported this past week on HSUS’s efforts to get Domino’s pizza to stop buy pork products from producers that use gestation crates for pigs.)

P.S. New report says sleeping with your pets is good! How about also working with them on top of you?

If that doesn’t make you love cats, this video of the week might get you closer.

03/15/2012

Guest post: Support California’s foie gras ban!  »


On July 1, the production and sale of foie gras will be illegal in the state of California.

There is only one foie gras farm in California, Sonoma Foie Gras. This place is a factory farm and a total nightmare for the animals that are tortured there. I’ve seen it with my own eyes.

In 2011, I was one of the Animal Protection and Rescue League’s (APRL) undercover investigators inside Sonoma Foie Gras. We documented horrific conditions. The ducks were absolutely TERRIFIED of humans. There were ducks that could not get up, and ducks that had difficulty standing walking and breathing. All of the ducks were panting, which is a sign of extreme stress. They were covered in their own waste, blood, and regurgitated feed. There were dead ducks inside the pens and ducks that were on the verge of death. We saw trashcans that were filled with dead ducks, thrown away like garbage. You can watch footage of our undercover investigation here.

Most people don’t support this cruel treatment of animals anymore. In the state of California, only about 300 restaurants are continuing to serve foie gras (less than 1 percent of all restaurants). Foie gras production is supported by only a handful of chefs who lack the creative vision to create delicacies that aren’t produced by extreme animal cruelty. Not only are these chefs continuing to serve foie gras, in spite of the impending ban, a small (but vocal) minority are holding foie gras benefit dinners and raising funds to try to overturn the foie gras ban. A couple of these chefs have even been so bold as to say that they’ll defy it. They’re acting like little children throwing a temper tantrum.

Opponents of the ban have given a lot of false information to the media lately. A few chefs have stated that they’ve been to foie gras farms and have seen ducks running up to be fed! Are you kidding me? The ducks at Sonoma Foie Gras were TERRIFED at the very sight of humans!

Foie gras supporters have also stated that ducks would naturally gorge themselves. However, the particular breed of duck—a hybrid of Muscovy and Peking—used for foie gras production is not a migrating species, and these ducks would not gorge themselves. Moreover, even migratory ducks certainly wouldn’t gorge themselves to the point of organ failure, as is done in foie gras production. If ducks gorge themselves naturally, there shouldn’t be a need to force feed them, and there shouldn’t be a problem with a law against force-feeding.

Ban opponents claim to be working on a “humane” way of producing foie gras, but they’ve had eight years to come up with an alternative to force-feeding and they’ve come up with nada.

The San Francisco City Council, along with eight other city councils, including L.A. and San Diego, have passed resolutions calling on restaurants to stop serving foie gras. In that vein, I’ve started a campaign, United For Animals’ Foie Gras Fight, along with my fellow undercover investigators, to get foie gras cruelty out of the Bay Area! We’ve been organizing protests at Bay Area restaurants (mainly in San Francisco) that are serving foie gras and holding these ridiculous benefit dinners.

We have two recent victories under our belt: BayWolf Restaurant in Oakland (which removed foie gras from the menu four days after we protested there), and Taj Campton Place (which removed foie gras from the menu a few days before our scheduled protest). We need to keep the pressure on the restaurants that are continuing to serve foie gras.

The media have taken an interest in our cause, and have been sending crews to report on our protests, in which we seek to educate the public about the cruelty involved in foie gras production. We’ve recently done interviews with KTVU-2, NBC-3, CBS-5, and ABC-7.

If you would like to become involved in our campaign, and take a stand for the ducks that are tortured for this cruel delicacy, please check out our Facebook page, where you can find our upcoming events and links to our media coverage. You can also email me. We provide all of the signs, banners and leaflets. All you have to do is show up! It’s super easy and effective.

Dana Portnoy spends most of her “spare” time volunteering at Animal Place and Harvest Home Sanctuaries, baking treats for vegan bake sales, running half-marathons (to raise money for animals) and attending and organizing protests. She lives in the Bay Area with three rescued cats, who pretty much rule her life.

01/20/2012

Foie gras is cruel, even if you think it tastes good.   »


Scary video, very well made. If you don’t want to watch the whole thing, just check out the stats in the beginning. This is not a rare occurrence, this is where the majority of foie gras comes from in the U.S.

A reader alerted us to this post on Etsy gushing over foie gras and complaining about any measures to stop it. It’s just a sickening, confused bit of writing that attempts to justify and rationalize cruelty by identifying that there are other cruelties in the world. I know my response is long but there are so many terrible points to contend. Plus foie gras is just so disturbing, when people make light of it, we should give it the attention it deserves. Let’s jump in, shall we?

It may not be a taste for every palate, but I’m a staunch fan of this controversial delicacy, particularly when it arrives as a generously sliced, perfectly pan-seared portion, topped with nothing more than a dusting of fleur de sel. Needless to say, I’m more than a little flustered at California’s pending law forbidding the production and sale of foie gras, which takes effect this July.

She lands on the pro side of the foie gras controversy because it tastes good? Is that how we make decisions? Is that what we base our values on? I have to assume people just don’t realize how very vapid the “it tastes good” argument is. We’re talking about cruelty, morals, and values and they come back with their sensory response? It’s absurdly superficial and amoral.

The proponents of the law argue that foie gras needs to be banned because the “gavage,” or force-feeding of geese and ducks as a method of production, is “inhumane.” While I do not doubt the existence of farms that provide less than ideal conditions for their ducks and geese, I’m puzzled as to why this food item, with more than 45 centuries of history and tradition, is being singled out when other more “inhumane” food choices exist.

She’s acting like we’re discussing genocide or something. Singling out foie gras? It’s not the funny-looking kid that always gets picked on at recess, it’s an abhorrent practice that results in a ridiculously unnecessary food product.

Let’s consider the ubiquitous hamburger, that quarter-pound of ground beef made from factory-farmed cows. We are, by now, familiar with the contamination risks inherent in the production of factory-farmed meat. Yet there’s a conspicuous absence of voices to ban this product.

What does contamination risk have to do with inhumane practices? I know the inhumane conditions can lead to tainted meat, but I thought we were talking about actual suffering, not sanitation. Additionally, I’m here! Let’s ban it!

Considering its affordability (when compared with pasture-raised, grass-fed beef) and availability in grocery stores across the country, one would think that subjecting the American population to the constant threat of bacterial contamination is more inhumane than seeking to ban the production of a luxury food item like foie gras. And we haven’t even started to discuss the cramped living conditions of the poor cows destined to live in their own manure for the length of their sad, sorry lives.

Exposing people to bacteria is inhumane? Let’s get a definition: “Without compassion for misery or suffering; cruel.” Come on, get some perspective. But again, let’s not subsidize factory farms, I’m down with that! And how about we DON’T torture cows! It’s just such an odd viewpoint. She states how hamburgers come from disease and cruelty so the conclusion she draws is that we should continue to eat foie gras? I never get that rationale. She’s using shitty conditions for one kind of animal to justify continuing shitty treatment of another? Just because there’s a variety of bad stuff, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t stop doing something bad.

Don’t eat meat? Well then, let’s take a look at where our fish comes from. Half of the seafood consumed in the U.S. is farmed, and that practice (aquaculture) is growing quickly to keep up with demand, with attendant consequences on the ocean’s health. Aquaculture has been found to rapidly deplete populations of wild fish in order to produce a pound of tuna or salmon and pollute ocean waters with fish waste, which has long-term environmental consequences for the world we live in. And yet there isn’t a peep to be heard about banning farmed salmon or tuna — or banning the practice of aquaculture altogether.

DUDE. First of all, what are you talking about? There is many a peep about this. This cool site “google” can help you learn more about it. Also, ask us! But really, that statement “Don’t eat meat? What about fish” is so bizarre too me. If a fish isn’t meat, what the fuck is it? It’s not a vegetable. It’s made out of dead animal. It’s not meat?

While it’s certainly important to pay attention to the welfare of animals that we depend on for food, there’s also a point where we need to recognize that an animal’s physiology renders it capable of certain physical conditions that would appear “inhumane” to the human experience.

OH MY GOD WATCH THE VIDEOS! Denying it’s inhumane is just blatant denial of reality.

Let me qualify that the notion of force-feeding an animal for food doesn’t sit comfortably with my foodie conscience. However, I’m also aware that part of that discomfort is a result of anthropomorphizing animals reared for consumption. The European Union’s Scientific Committee report about the welfare of ducks and geese involved in foie gras production found a lack of conclusive evidence on the aversive nature of force-feeding and its injurious effects. Wild waterfowl have also been found to produce foie gras after a feeding spree before the winter months. In fact, Eduardo Sousa produces “natural foie gras using this method.

Is this article called “For the Love of Eduardo Sousa Foie Gras?” It’s not, is it. To be clear, I’ve heard of this dude and his story and I definitely prefer it to regular foie gras. Also to be clear, I still think it sucks anyway. Putting that aside, this post has nothing to do with this alternative foie gras. It’s about all foie gras, including the 99.99 percent of foie gras that Eduardo Sousa doesn’t produce.

Additionally, you guys read the study and tell me if you come to the same conclusion as she did. Here’s an excerpt from the study:

Birds, including ducks and geese, have a wide range of pain receptors and an elaborate pain recognition system. Most injuries caused by tissue damage during handling or tube insertion would result in pain. The oropharyngeal area is particularly sensitive and is physiologically adapted to perform a gag reflex in order to prevent fluids entering the trachea. Force feeding will have to overcome this reflex and hence the birds may initially find this distressing and injury may result. The beak of a duck is richly innervated and the insertion of a ring through the beak would cause pain during the operation and might cause neuroma formation, and hence prolonged pain, thereafter. Similarly, most injuries to the feet caused by inadequate flooring would be painful.

That doesn’t sound inconclusive. It actually sounds very painful. If you don’t feel like reading the whole study, just search for “pain” and tell me force-feeding doesn’t cause pain or injury. Back to the post:

What’s far more inhumane, in my view, is allowing easy access to food that’s produced and consumed in ways that have proven track records of destroying the environment and our health. Where are the bans on soda, high-fructose corn syrup, and factory-farmed animals? Why is it, despite everything we know today, that these food items still tend to be the cheapest, most affordable and accessible food items for those with limited budgets?

Whaaaat is she talking about? All kinds of people oppose soda, high-fructose corn syrup, and factory-farmed animals. And I thought we were talking about being inhumane to geese and now suddenly we’re talking about being inhumane to people again? And making shitty food affordable is a whole different kind of cruelty than shoving a metal pipe down an animal’s throat. Let’s be real.

The optimists out there may say that I’m over-reacting, and I certainly hope I am. Viewed from an alternate perspective, one could consider this ban as a significant step in the fight against Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs). The idealist in me hopes that this is the case, because when you start to discuss livestock production in “humane/inhumane” terms, no real progress can be made until you talk about the elephant in the room: factory-farmed meat. Banning an expensive specialty food item isn’t going to advance animal welfare, so long as the majority of the population continues to consume (whether by choice or necessity) products that are bad for their health and the environment.

Again, just because factory farming is awful, that in no way means we shouldn’t ban another cruel practice. And of course Vegansaurus readers know that we speak out against factory farming all the time, and we’re certainly not the only ones. So one more time with feeling: join us in reality! Foie gras is a cruel “delicacy” that needs to go.

12/13/2011

Harvest Home’s Farewell to Foie Gras Party in Oakland on Saturday!  »

Who wants to go to a vegan dessert party to celebrate the impending ban of foie gras production and sale in California? You do! Even better, the proceeds from the soiree will benefit the wonderful Harvest Home Animal Sanctuary. Delicious and delightful! The details are below, let’s all stuff our faces with magical vegan treats whilst saving animals. Today, the world is a slightly less shitty place, and isn’t that the point of it all? I think? Let’s all go!

Don’t miss this special holiday event! Enjoy seasonal vegan appetizers and desserts, including soy nog, specialty beer, and spiced apple cider. Plus, goodie bags LOADED with vegan treats from Obsessive Confection Disorder, NewTree Chocolates, Lulu’s Raw Chocolate Alchemy, Go Max Go Foods, Desiderio Chocolates, Let’s Do Organic Vegan Gummi Bears, 100% Pure Cosmetics, and more! [Ed.: THAT IS ONE HELL-OF A GOODIE BAG!]

View original photography of the sanctuary’s rescued ducks, vegetarian food drive benefitting the Emergency Food Bank of Stockton/San Joaquin (individuals who donate to the vegetarian food drive will be entered into a raffle to win cool prizes), and a Toast to the End of Foie Gras Sale and Production in California!

Awesome! The party happens on Saturday, Dec, 17, from 5 to 8 p.m., at a private home in Oakland. The address will be provided to registered attendees prior to the event. A single ticket costs $15; a single ticket and a one-month  rescued duck sponsorship costs $30. Space is limited, so register online today!

01/31/2011

Product Review: Faux Gras from the Regal Vegan!  »


A new friend told me about chef Ella Nemcova and her vegan catering company, the Regal Vegan. Turns out she not only prepares food for events, she has her own product out: Faux Gras. They sell this at the hippy grocery around the corner from me! In true Megan Rascal fashion, I immediately ran out and bought a tub! Just kidding, I immediately took a nap. After several hours, I ran out and bought a tub! I brought it and a baguette to my brother’s for a snack before dinner.

At first bite, it’s very mild. Then, all of a sudden, you’re hooked! We ate the entire baguette with the Faux Gras in one sitting. I’ve never had foie gras so I can’t compare but I can say it was delicious! We did save a bit for my sis-in-law (I’m so nice to her) and she said it didn’t taste like foie gras—a positive, in my opinion—but it was similar to pâté. She really liked it, my brother really liked it, and I was in love. It’s a bit sweet with a slight bite, though generally mild.

Bonus: It’s pretty healthy, high in fiber and protein. And I like what Nemcova says about vegans and non-vegans in her FAQ:

Q: But I’m not vegan, can I still eat it?
A: Vegan is like the universal donor of blood (Type O) in the sense that EVERYONE can eat vegan, but vegans can only eat vegan. Because Faux Gras is so rich in fiber, protein, and Omega-3′s, it’s considered a health food. But it tastes like a naughty, sinful, [somewhat] addictive food. So, please non-vegans, eat up! See what it feels like to eat something tasty that won’t destroy your diet.

That’s what I’m always saying! If there’s an event, I’m like, “Why isn’t there any vegan food?” And once my friend was like, “But you’re the only vegan, you want a whole dish just for you?” and I was like, “But EVERYONE can eat the vegan dish!” Winners all around!

Conclusion: Faux Gras rules! It’s available in stores throughout New York City. And don’t worry if you live elsewhere, they deliver! It’s a four-tub minimum for delivery but that’s like nothing. It would be great to bring to a party or have as an appetizer. If you’re like me, grab a baguette and you’ve got dinner!

11/05/2010

Vodka party at Gracias Madre with fat ducks and fashion kitties in this week’s link-o-rama!  »


Via Pawesome, we’ve learned that United Bamboo’s 2011 cats-in-clothing calendar is available to order right now! How will the other kitties be dressed?

Ms. Unterman of the SF Examiner fell in love with Gracias Madre, and Jun Belen thought No Worries is doing a good job, so far. In the Sacramento Valley, a man shot a duck, and discovered she had eaten herself an extremely engorged liver—foie gras-style, in fact. Real live naturally occurring foie gras, in pintail ducks eating oodles of rice! Neat! Unfortunately it’s just not as delicious as “real” foie gras, so they’ll just have to keep gavaging those geese (until all of those selfish creeps die). Shucks.

Feeling blue? How about some vodka? Barnivore will help you choose the brand, and this magnificent guide will teach you how to drink it properly. Once it gets cold (ha ha global warming, it’ll never dip below 50, right?), let’s have vodka and spicy + salty hors d’œuvres parties. I am particularly looking forward to the part where you “[b]reathe out loudly through your mouth emitting an animal noise.” I mean. Perhaps someone could try this hummus recipe by Nick Kindelsperger of The Paupered Chef? He does make it sound amazing, and not too terribly difficult.

Peta strikes again! Ingrid Newkirk herself has offered to put $10,000 toward Lindsay Lohan’s rehab bill if LiLo will go vegan for the remainder of her rehab, and if she maintains her vegan diet for an entire year, Peta will give her another $10,000. Who feels good about donating to Peta? LiLo hasn’t taken Peta up on Ms. Newkirk’s offer yet, but YOU NEVER KNOW. But it’s not like Peta has any standards for their celebrity spokesmodels, so why not another wearer of fur and leather?

Best part of Friday: The Week in Vegan, by our Laura for SF Weekly!

If you’re at odds and ends this weekend, have a look at the events post! Are there stories you’d like us to cover? Let us know! See you around, pals.

05/14/2010

Debating organics, praising McDonald’s (?!!??), drinking mezcal and MORE in today’s link-o-rama!  »

 This chinchilla is wearing a boy! This boy is wearing a chinchilla! Who’s the boss? With animals who have not been domesticated for very long, like chinchillas, you never can say. Just stay very still and marvel at how light they are compared to how dense they look. [photo credit: I have no idea, sorry. Let us know!]

Exciting vegan-style events!
Hey L.A.! This weekend Keep is having a sample sale, where you can save up to 60 percent on all kinds of super-hot sneakers. Be at the Keep offices at 418a Bamboo Lane today and tomorrow, Friday and Saturday May 14 and 15, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., for shoes shoes shoes.

Tomorrow, Saturday May 15, BAARN will participate in an international day of awareness for marine mammals in captivity, and protest in favor of the retirement of Lolita, the oldest orca in captivity (and also possibly the loneliest—her companion of 10 years basically committed suicide in 1980 and she’s been on her own since). There will be two events from noon to 2 p.m.: one at the entrance of Pier 39, near the Embarcadero and Stockton Street in San Francisco; and one at the Berkeley Marina, at the first parking lot on the left in the south sailing basin. BAARN asks that you email here for further information.

Next Thursday, May 20, Rocket Dog Rescue is having a fashion show fundraiser, with vegan snacks and drinks and clothes and all kinds of good times! Be at Mayes at 1233 Polk St. at Fern Street (hey Polk Gulch!) at 8 p.m.—RSVP here first and it’s $10, without an RSVP it’ll cost you $15. But who cares, the money goes to Rocket Dog! For more information about the designers and sponsors, visit the Avant-Gardist.

Items of varying degrees of interest!
So how did the foie gras protests at Thomas Keller’s restaurants go last weekend? According to Eater, “rowdy,” “timid,” and “calm,” depending on location. CNN seems to have just cottoned on to the notion that some people find foie gras reprehensible.

Edible Geography explores the community gardens of New York City, which have never been studied before? The maps and photos are great!

Lebanon made an obscene amount of hummus and falafel, beating Israel’s obscene record of hummus and falafel, and uncomfortably get all nationalistic for reasons we don’t understand. Still: hummus and falafel, yum yum yum.

The Chronicle's Cellarist blog thinks that mezcal will be the big new liquor. I say, YES PLEASE. I had the most amazing cocktail in Mexico City made with mezcal; it was smoky and a little fruity and a little sweet, wicked strong and so delicious, and I’ve never been able to find a recipe online that makes sense. And no, vegans, mezcal does not need to contain a drowned worm to be authentic.

Mark Bittman is agog because distance runner Scott Jurek somehow manages to eat “5,000 to 8,000 calories a day”—as a vegan! What what what?!??!! Isn’t vegan food all super-low-calorie and super-healthy? Doesn’t everyone eating a vegan diet lose 50 pounds, like, one week after starting it? Aren’t all vegans super-skinny, struggling to get enough calories as regular, non-athletes? HOW IS SCOTT JUREK MEDICALLY POSSIBLE?!??!!!

"Environmentalism must become an economic vision." "Theses on Sustainability" by Eric Zencey in Orion Magazine.

Meanwhile, the Independent tries to convince us that McDonald’s “has been a positive force for change.” Still “killing lots of mass-produced animals”? I’m not convinced. Get your blood pressure down with an interview with Grist's Tom Philpott on the role of class in “the food debate.”

An SPCA-run animal shelter in Ontario, Canada will euthanize over 350 of its animals due to an outbreak of an especially virulent case of ringworm that has spread to staff members.

Back in April, the National Research Council released a report stating that genetically modified crops weren’t all bad—mostly right now what’s bad is the way they’re being used, and monopolized, and how we the public have no trust in them. I will agree that I don’t trust them, and Monsanto is the devil, but that’s about it.

Sorry about being totally tardy to the party here, but a couple weeks ago there was an awesome fight in Foreign Policy that you guys will totally love. First, Robert Paarlberg gets all snotty about how “the organic movement” is a big waste of time, only for rich jerks, and if we really want to feed the world, we have to follow the rules of industrial agriculture. Second, Anna Lappé totally smacks him down with a perfect deconstruction of his silly arguments, explaining how truly organic farming could feed the whole world much more efficiently and sustainably. It’s so good.

05/07/2010

Vegan Bakesale TOMORROW! Plus, how to clean birds, shoot dogs, save frogs, and MORE in today’s link-o-rama!  »

Our pals at Pawesome present shirts by WOWCH, which are super-adorable but not too cute.

Vegan-type fun-times events!
The SF Vegan Bakesale location has moved! It’s still happening tomorrow, Saturday May 8 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., but now it will be in front of Herbivore at 983 Valencia St. between 21st and 22nd Streets in the Mission. Be there or be an animal-hating, self-denying jerk!

After the Bakesale, you can protest Thomas Keller’s use of foie gras at the French Laundry in Yountville. The protest begins at 6:30 p.m. The groups will also protest at Keller’s restaurants Bouchon in Beverly Hills at 7 p.m., and at Per Se in NYC at 11:30 a.m. (EDT!). For more information, including contacts for carpooling, click here.

Burned out on Bakesales? Don’t want to cross the Bay Bridge? Maybe check out this mysterious “A Taste For You—Spring Flavor Vegan-Style” with chefs Wanda Crudas and HuNia at the North Oakland Senior Center on Saturday at 1 p.m. instead. The event features cooking demos and snacks (including Souley Vegan and Cafe Gratitude), local entertainment, activities for kids, and costs $15 in advance, $20 at the door. For more information, visit one of these sites.

Items of varying degrees of importance!
PETA blows it again! Definitely, spending donations to fly a weird, nasty message over Mobile, Ala., was a good use of money. You guys are SO EMBARRASSING, GOD. That said, oil-drilling and fishing are ruining the oceans. Stop eating fish, stop driving so goddamn much, and bring some hair to the bakesale tomorrow to help clean up the animal victims of the Deep Horizon disaster.

And speaking of whom: Popular Mechanics explains how trained volunteers clean these birds. The Audubon Magazine blog has regular, super-informative updates on the wildlife suffering from this tragedy as well.

Some lady—who isn’t a nutritionist, therapist, psychologist, psychiatrist, or even someone with a certificate in “food studies” from a community college—would like parents to watch out for their "strict vegan" kids, who are probably suffering from "orthorexia." Ma’am, you are an idiot; kindly shut the fuck up. Also: would you like a cupcake?

Bryant Terry was on Martha Stewart on Monday! How did we miss this? He cooked citrus chard with raisins and spinach with garlic and chile, both of which sound simple and scrumptious. Yes, Alice Waters was there, too.

Save the Frogs got Gary Danko to stop serving Florida pig frogs, and earned a single, ultra-snide article about it. Good job, guys! Shut up, news.

Read a story that’s not worth a whole rant, but definitely rates an angry sentence or two? Send me the link. For the time being, look at my Oliver! Like Toto, poppies make him sleepy. Or maybe it’s the sunshine, who knows.

Obviously we aren’t going because we’re all blogging for pennies/underemployed and -paid/unemployed losers/neither scientists nor medical researchers (if we were, we wouldn’t be here, suckers), but: PCRM is hosting a two-day educational conference in August on animal testing that sounds amazing—it advertises “a global panel of experts to discuss existing and promising alternatives to the use of animals in research”—and if you are involved in the sciences, perhaps you should attend! And send us a postcard about how great it is.

Mike Tyson is VEGAN? Say WHAT? That’s possibly weirder than these crazy-looking "gaze-averting" glasses that allow people to look at gorillas in zoos without causing the apes to feel threatened.

The only place I’ve seen the Shelter Pet Project commercials is on MSNBC during The Rachel Maddow Show, and they are CHRISTMAS-THEMED. Not enough, you guys. Help get the word out—an adopted pet is the best pet!

The ag industry is SO MAD at the Humane Society and its successes in showing consumers that they can change the industry’s cruelest practices. And though Cargill may not care, we’re happy that HSUS has won its federal case against Hudson Valley Foie Gras, which has been charged with multiple violations of the Clean Water Act.

Ike’s neighbors are SO MAD at Ike, his mom, and Ike’s customers, and are trying to get him evicted from the building. How can you guys complain about losing your yards when you don’t have any yards?

Mine is now available on DVD, iTunes and Netflix! Buy it for your mom, if you believe in celebrating corporate holidays! You could also buy her a falafel from a Michael Mina restaurant, because it’s (apparently) vegan and moms love it when you spend lots of money on them.

A Canadian guy shot a bear that turned out to be a grizzly-polar bear hybrid. A marine biologist says this is a result of climate change, and predicts there will be more interbreeding between marine mammals as the ice caps melt. Uh, neat?

Guns are the fucking worst. In Oakland last Saturday, some police officers shot a deer to death with their pistols, despite having tranquilizer guns on them. Back in February, on a tip, a SWAT team busted into a Missouri home, shot the family pit bull to death, and shot and injured the family corgi. There’s video, but it’s awful, especially around 3:14 when the guy being arrested realizes what the police have done. Right, and of course the guy and his wife were later charged with child endangerment.

But a Dresdner man “married” his cat of 10 years, Cecelia, because she is already 15 and does not have much longer to live and he loves her very much. An unnamed actor officiated the ceremony. So that’s—less depressing than the police shooting your dogs for NO GOOD REASON. On the other hand, the Florida state legislature refused to pass an anti-bestiality bill, because of stupidity.

12/17/2009

Foie gras at Denny’s in Japan. I’m so confused, didn’t Denny’s recently try to update their image to emulate that of a ’50s American diner?? It’s no surprise that Japan would be all over that insanity, but the real question is, WTF would foie gras be doing on the menu of an American diner in the 1950s!?

It’s the inconsistency that kills me, friends.

Further, puke.

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