My nightmare is coming true: European catfish leap from the water to catch birds  »

Look at them! Lurking just under the water! I have said forever that fish are entirely untrustworthy, that if they had any sense at all they’d all go full piranha and start devouring us air-breathing, water-defiling jerks. And now, they’ve begun.

Per Ed Yong at Not Exactly Rocket Science, European catfish in the River Tarn are hunting pigeons on a gravel island in the city of Albi. The pigeons innocently step into the water to bathe, and the catfish leap out of the water to catch a bird, drag it under, and swallow it whole. WELCOME TO NIGHTMARE TOWN:

[Can’t see the video? Watch it on]

See? Terrifying. And the speculation just makes it worse:

The European catfish is an alien, introduced into the Tarn in 1983, and currently flourishing there. Is it possible that these invaders have eaten too many local fish and are forced to seek sustenance elsewhere? Does this explain why it seems to be the smaller catfish that go after pigeons? Or is it that the smaller individuals are less likely to be permanently stranded on shore, or expend less energy in wiggling back into the water? Why, essentially, is a bird in the mouth worth being a fish out of water?

You realize what’s going to happen, right? Humans are going to empty the seas of all but the least edible fishes, which, denied every other form of sustenance, will have to turn to eating bathing animals of all species to survive. WE ARE THE CREATORS OF OUR OWN DESTRUCTION.

[Photo and video via Not Exactly Rocket Science]


Humane Society investigates Cal-Maine battery cage farm: surprise, it’s a hellscape  »

Rows of cages stretch alongside a pile of overflowing chicken manure.

This is absolutely the least disturbing photo of the 12 released today by the Humane Society as part of its 28-day undercover investigation at a Cal-Maine factory farm in Texas. Each hen is allowed “67 square inches” of space in which to live and die; the cages are stacked on top of each other; and there are approximate 1 million hens laying eggs at this place.

The investigation showed dead hens left in cages with living hens. It showed hens covered in manure from the hens in the cages above them. It showed hens with massive wounds left untreated. It showed eggs covered in the hens’ blood and manure. Eggs: “nature’s perfect food!”

Cal-Maine recalled “24,000 dozen,” which is to say 288,000 eggs on Friday, Nov. 5, because one of its suppliers had had its eggs test positive for Salmonella Enteriditis! This supplier, Ohio Fresh Eggs, LLC in Croton, Ohio, presumably still keeps its hens in battery cages, as the agreement reached in January of this year prohibits the building of new battery cages. Looking at the photos of the Cal-Maine facility in Texas, it’s not hard to see how naughty Salmonella might hop from the hens’ excrement to their eggs. California’s egg-eaters and its chickens are so lucky for Prop. 2, right? Except that one of the recalled brands sells eggs all over California, ha ha ha.

The detailed report from HSUS [pdf] is a very good, if nauseating read. It’ll be nice/depressing/appalling to see the omnivorous (food) world’s reaction to this. Meanwhile, anyone for a nice cruelty-free dessert? Or maybe wait a little while until you’ve recovered from that horror show.


Review: Medjool!  »

Medjool is located in the fake Mission District. It’s where people from the Marina* come when they want to slum it in the scary, scary Mission. It’s pretentious and ridiculous (look at all those a-holes out front in the picture. What a bunch of a-holes) but they have a fair amount of vegan items on the menu—which is advertised as “more than a menu. It’s a cultural event.” BLOW ME, MEDJOOL—so I was game to try it. I went two times and had decent experiences with the hummus and couscous, nothing extraordinary, but my third time visiting, HOLY SHIT. Beyond the terrible service, terrible food, and terrible music there was the FUCKING TERRIBLE SERVICE. Our waiter was so snooty, so slow and so thick in the head, it was truly mind-boggling. He wasn’t exactly mean, more operating in a fashion that defied all logic. It was like in his universe, two plus two equals cookie. Do you know what I’m saying? It’s as if he was thoroughly confused that he was our waiter and not some dude who showed up at Medjool to PARTY!!! He never said hello, never told us the specials and when we finally flagged him down to order he asked, “What you want?” With this kind of service, WHO NEEDS ENEMIES?!

I wasn’t all that surprised that three out of four dishes were fucked up with nary an apology or speedy correction and the biggest of all horrors, he brought me a FUCKING WHOLE CHICKEN. I was like, oh bitches no. I am VEGAN. He was like, “Oops. My bad.” I remained cool. He took away the carcass. Five minutes later a runner comes with ANOTHER WHOLE CHICKEN. I ask my friends which one of them is fucking with me. Seriously, is this a joke? I call the waiter back over and explain problem with receiving wrong order twice and he offers no apology or explanation and returns with my correct order a full 20 minutes later. Everyone else is done eating. I am forced to eat alone and feel extra fat. Fucking horrendous. I will never return and encourage all other vegans and vegan sympathizers to do the same. Luckily, nobody is beating down my door to take me to Medjool. Nobody is beating down my door to take me anywhere. Tear.

Actually, I take it back. The waiter was not only an alien from planet Insane Incompetency but also pretty mean. I might even call him a douche. Actually, to call him a douche would be an insult to douches because they’ve at least been inside a woman. Oh, snap!

*For those of you unfamiliar with SF geographical stereotypes, I’m sorry. They’re pretty great. Living in the Marina basically means that, if you’re a woman, you’ll finish college, work for a couple of years, find some jr. banker d-bag to marry, quit working to plan your wedding and then get pregnant, never work again, raise ungrateful brats while your husband is off cheating with a dude named Chereyl. Also, you bronze your cleavage.

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