Gifts that give back! For vegans and beyond! »
That’s right errrybody, a Vegansaurus Gifts That Give Back list! Because there is nothing like secretly imposing your values on others! I think I’ve got something for everyone on here. I’m kind of known for being the best gift-giver in the world so you’re pretty lucky I’m here. Now, it’s not as easy to recommend stuff for strangers but I found some good presents. Let’s do this!
First up, this is a present for your fashionable dog-lover. What? Why, yes, I guess that does describe me very well! And I can assure you I would love to get this:
This is the “found my animal” set and it’s available at Uncommongoods.com and on the manufacturer’s site. It celebrates all the adopted pups out there! Totally leather-free, each leash has a little brass tag with a number on it, counting your dog among the league of the proud rescue dogs. They have super-cute harnesses on their site too, all totally cotton. The best part, 25 percent of their profits go to the Louis Animal Foundation. Awesome!
Now for the “foodie” (“foodie” is like more stigmatized than “hipster” in my mind) or tea-lover, Douglas Fir tea! You can purchase the tea from my favorite vegan sneaker company, Keep! Made by the Juniper Ridge, 10 percent of sales go toward “protecting the western wilderness.” Ha! You thought I was only going to do animal charities, didn’t you! Well, guess what: lots of animals live in the wilderness so it’s important to protect our environment, too! Plus, I know lots of people that care about the environment and don’t care about animals so they will like the extra benefit from the gift and not know that you are secretly supporting the vegan agenda. Ha! Ha-ha!
Above we have a nice gift set from Aveda. Toiletry gift sets rule. I said it. Plus with this set, you get a little tagua nut accessory, sustainably made by women in Colombia: “Aveda’s alliance with indigenous people and women artisans in Colombia helps support BETTER FUTURES FOR 400 FAMILIES, and helps PRESERVE 400 RAINFOREST ACRES.” Dope!
For the bambino in your life, here’s a super great gorilla from miYim:
A portion of the proceeds go to everyone’s favorite ape-woman, the Jane Goodall Institute. I’m really into the description of the stuffed animal: "…this thoughtful and realistic looking Gorilla…" Does he look thoughtful? Or realistic? Doesn’t realistic mean we’d see his frank and beans?
Here’s another good gift for kids or a family:
The Mission: China board game, available at Amazon, is all about endangered animals! Plus, a portion of the proceeds go to Conservation International. I will admit that I totally enjoy playing board games with my family on holidays. Don’t tell anyone!
Now this next thing, I’m totally into:
A wildlife habitat kit! Awesome! Perfect for the gardener or just I guess anyone with a house or backyard. It’s available from the National Wildlife Federation. So cool! Shut up, it is cool.
For my next trick, candles that give back!:
With Jimmy’s candles, five dollars from every candle goes toward charity. You get to pick the charity from a list that includes Paws SF and the ASPCA, so that rules. I know candles aren’t the most exciting thing ever but you can kind of give them to anyone and they are actually useful, unlike 90 percent of presents. Oh! And all the candles are soy. Shweet.
OK, OK, this list is getting long! I will leave you with one final idea:
OK that’s two but they are from the same place! This is the Treahouse crossbody and the Mend messenger from the Mend collection and they benefit Invisible Children. See, I don’t only care about animals! I care about kids too. But that’s where I draw the line! Kids and animals. They are innocent and we should take care of them. Plus, these bags are FLY! Come on, you know I’m right.
There you have it! A nice list if I do say so myself. Happy holidays!
Gorilla does something lovable once again, briefly redeeming inhumanity of zoo »
There is nothing cuter than an animal being adorable with a tech gadget. When I was still running a menagerie out of my room I was always trying to get my hamsters and guinea pigs to take interest in the newest Game Boy advance offerings or to help me with the buttons of the first-generation DS Lite. Unfortunately, they were not into it, and preferred to urinate all over my lap instead of trying to assist me with daring princess-rescues and magical planet-saving. Selfish bastards!
Fortunately, I now know that next time I want an awesome animal to play with, I should count on a Gorilla. Because Gorillas will get down on some Tetris.
Check out these pictures (and this short video!) of Bawang, a Gorilla at the San Francisco Zoo playing with a DSi XL that some kid dropped into its cage. The article says Bawang eventually lost interest in the game, but I assure you that’s only because she has good taste, and recognizes that the DSi XL is a clunky, oversized, and fairly useless upgrade. If that kid had dropped a DSi into the enclosure, he would have had to wrestle his system from Bawang’s and her (adopted)
daughter son Hasani’s clutches.
[photo by Christina Spicuzza; for the full set, visit her Flickr!]
Vegan Bakesale TOMORROW! Plus, how to clean birds, shoot dogs, save frogs, and MORE in today’s link-o-rama! »
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.
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.
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.
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.