Vote for us? We’ll bake you cookies*! »
The VegNews Veggie Awards are ON! And Vegansaurus is nominated for Best Blog! And my column, “Ask Laura” is nominated for Best Column! Well, all the columns are nominated for best columns but still: WOOHOO! So please vote for us! And for me! Or you don’t have to vote for us, no bigs, we’ll still love you through our tears. However, you should still vote because there are fantastic prizes to be won, including year supply of Coconut Bliss ice cream, a VeganTreats dessert party flown straight to your face, and a CARIBBEAN CRUISE! Now, go vote so that you can get your ass on that boat and set sail to DELIGHT!
*Maybe! One day!
Vegans taking over: Animal Planet! »
Vegan Treats is going to dominate Animal Planet with a new reality show! According to Hollywood Reporter, the show, Sweet Avenger, will be out in the summer. Who’s excited?! Hopefully I will have cable by then (lord knows how I’ve survived this long).
The show is set to focus on Vegan Treats owner Danielle Konya—her personal life and the bakery. Hot damn, look at that picture! I didn’t realize Bethlehem, Penn. was home of the vegan baddass. I’ll have to go north* of Philadelphia a little more often! Actually, I am still planning my Vegan Treats pilgrimage, and I think I’ve convinced my sister to go with me. OMJesus maybe if I go now, I’ll be on TV! I’m already so Hollywood, I hope you guys can handle it.
From the Hollywood Reporter: “‘Animal Planet made a big brand statement with Whale Wars,’ said Marjorie Kaplan, president and general manager of Animal Planet. ‘Now with Sweet Avenger, muscular conservation has a deliciously different new face.’” Muscular conservation? The word is VEGAN, honey. Still cute though. Bring it on!
*It’s north, apparently, not west as I previously said. I’m terrible at math.
Interview with a Vegan: Joshua Katcher! »
Vegansaurus: Do you go by Josh or exclusively Joshua?
Joshua Katcher: I prefer Joshua, but I won’t have a complete meltdown if someone calls me Josh. I may cry for a few minutes and punch a hole in the wall, but then I’ll be totally fine. I’m pretty emotionally stable.
Why are you vegan?
Because it’s delicious, and because I think animals are individuals who deserve validation and consideration where their lives and bodies are at stake. But also because I hate freedom and I was hoping to be frail and ill—but that backfired and I’m really healthy and athletic now.
How long have you been vegan?
There was no exact date—it was a transition—but about 12 or 13 years, I think.
I am completely FASCINATED by parasitic intelligence. But as far as animals that I want to hang with, and cuddle. Dogs and goats. And cows. And pigs. Turkeys are like cats! Oy vey, this is impossible to answer.
Got any companion animals? Pictures!
Enzo is a rescued chihuahua. His nicknames are: Enzo Benzo, Enzo Roni, Reno Roni, Monster, Burrito, Little Man. There are more, but my sanity would be called into question. He didn’t bark or play or have any interest in other dogs for almost two years, but he is finally coming out of his shell, and recovering from the three years of abuse/neglect he experienced. He was rescued by Amy from sugarmutts.org.
[OMJesus this picture!]
Dr. Cow’s hemp-nut cashew cheese.
Favorite vegan restaurant?
I still swoon over Candle 79’s seitan, but the bacon cheeseburger at Blossom Cafe is habit-forming, and the beet tartar at Madeline’s Bistro is worth flying to L.A. to have. I am such a foodie, it’s hard to choose favorites. Sometimes a bowl of steamed kale is the best thing in the world, and other times a Vegan Treats chocolate-covered strawberry shortcake hits the spot.
Vegan celebrity you want to bang?
All of them. At once.
Yes. Sorry, haters.
Do you remember when we met at Lula’s? Was it as awesome for you as it was for me?
I have been recovering ever since.
What’s your favorite thing to get at Lula’s?
I keep it simple at Lula’s: I really like a scoop of strawberry ice cream on a sugar cone. When feeling adventurous, I am obsessed with the malt powder or a malted milkshake—and the coconut whipped cream is better than I remember whipped cow-tit secretions being. I have a gym membership for a reason.
What do you like about fashion? How do you know all about it?
I like fashion because I am gay and I love being a stereotype. Ha ha. In all honesty, fashion is an incredibly powerful form of visual communication. It is the premiere means by which the majority of people in our current culture express their personal identity. We all participate in that discourse, whether we like it or not. Even if we reject the notion of fashion all-together, our culture is dominated by this visual language. There is a lot of power to be had or lost in dress, and if you know how to communicate that power properly, it have have amazing effects—especially if you are someone who wants to change the world. Additionally, if you know how to decode what others are wearing—a fur coat for example, it makes understanding the issues surrounding everything from animal cruelty in fashion to sweatshops and ecological issues, less overwhelming.
Favorite vegan designer?
I am really inspired by the strides John Bartlett is making, announcing “I want to be a 100-percent-vegan designer.” He is a personal friend, and a powerhouse in the fashion arena.
Favorite vegan accessory/possession?
There are a few. I got a recycled poly suit from CPas, a vegan biker “Decontrol” jacket from April77, black “milo” boots from NOVACAS, the gray “Vintage Boot” from Vegetarian Shoes, and an awesome men’s peacoat from Vaute Couture.
Why’d you start The Discerning Brute?
I started the Discerning Brute several years ago because no one was really providing a lifestyle resource specifically for “ethically handsome men.” From the beginning, my aim was to slowly compile a catalog of brands, companies, resources, and people that would form a community, and to eventually open a store, launch a suit line, and write a book. These are all underway.
Who does the illustrative design-y stuff for your site? I’m into it.
Thanks! I did the layout and graphic design myself, and the actual art I used in the design is from an 18th century illustrator.
[Katcher and Anna Wintour look-alike outside the Conde Nast building for the Pinnacle launch!]
What’s Pinnacle all about?
JK: PINNACLE: Reinvent The Icon is an image-driven initiative consisting of fashion industry professionals from all areas of fashion culture who are clarifying the changed meaning of fur within the context of our current culture.
Pinnacle produces editorial stories, and works with informed designers, models, and other professionals to create accessories and various forms of visual art consistent with an interest in:
- Providing critical commentary about animal fur
- Exposing aspects of fur production and marketing which are intentionally hidden or obscured
- Shifting the outdated, whitewashed and greenwashed attitude toward, and meaning of fur garments
- Calling for personal and corporate accountability concerning the cruelty inherent in all fur production
What’s next for Pinnacle?
I have been touring a bit with my “Fashion & Animals” talk, and I plan on speaking at Parsons, FIT, and San Francisco, soon. I was also asked to teach a module at the American University of Paris next spring on the topic, which is exciting. Getting more designers, models, photographers, etc. involved and producing more and more fashion content. Also, a huge priority for us is expanding to China because that is the fur capital of the world, and there are no regulations to protect animals. There is more animal cruelty in China than the rest of the world combined, and they are the largest exporter of fur—and that includes cat and dog fur. Because China is a communist country, if you can convince the government to stop something, it will be done overnight, more or less. We need to reach the Chinese government with a message of being heroes for animals in an appealing way. The Compassion For Animals Foundation is doing amazing work in China.
Is it true you’re trying to take over the world?
Well, the short answer is yes. But, since I have a bone to pick (hey vegan police, is it vegan to say that?) with hierarchical power structures, that poses a dilemma. I plan to change the world, but a take over seems so…egotistical.
First of all, the Guardian rules. Second of all, how do you feel about being “the new sexy vegan?”
I was so honored, and shocked. Growing up, I was always a totally shy, unpopular, comic-book-reading geek who got picked on pretty bad. So it’s quite strange to be considered “sexy” by someone. I’m learning to embrace it though, and use it to help animals.
Do you have any amazing nicknames I should know about?
My nickname in junior high was “fag” so you can try that. Or you can call me Yahoshua Ruvin. That’s my super-cool Hebrew name. Don’t be jealous.
Are you willing to have Vegansaurus over and cook us a vegan feast? If so, what day?
I’m not sure I have room for a dinosaur in my apartment, but I’d be happy to come to one of your places and cook together! That would be fun. We can make sawdust and gravel and grass clippings, since that’s what vegans eat.
Any questions for Vegansaurus? Anything!
What would the Vegansauraus dudes like to see happen on the DB, and what would you like to see for sale at my forthcoming store, BraveGentleMan.com? Do any readers have men’s lifestyle questions for me?
Vegansaurus men, let’s hear it! Just what does the Vegansaurus Man of today want?
The Washington Post lets its vegan flag fly in Philly! »
On the Washington Post website, one writer chronicled her weekend of vegan eating in Philadelphia, and about her roadtrip to Vegan Treats! I JUST told my sis we have to make a trip out there next time I’m in Philly! Vegan Treats is all the way in Bethlehem, PA. It’s a regular pilgrimage.
The writer, Melanie D.G. Kaplan, is not actually vegan; she eats a “largely vegetarian diet.” I largely congratulate her on going vegan for a weekend though! However, I must warn you about the ending, as it almost took my heart out: “if I ever felt hungry again, maybe I’d eat a small green salad. With goat cheese.” Um, fuck you very much. But the rest of the piece is pretty good, as she covered some real vegan ground! She and her vegan pals went to Blackbird, which I just visited myself, and they went to Grindcore, which many of our lovely commenters recommended to me. They were pleased with both—they must have good taste! (My Taste = Good Taste.)
There is one point they seem to have missed, it doesn’t look like they went to Horizons? Maybe they’d been there before? Still, to cover vegan food in Philly and skip Horizons, that’s kind of criminal. Horizons is off the chain! It gives Millennium a solid run for its money.
All in all, it’s a very positive review. I think this is all a part of the vegans-are-dominating! trend. I feel like we have officially cornered the market on baked goods—the people have bowed down to the vegan cupcake! NOW we have to get them on board with the vegan savory boat! Ideas? I’m always just like, “Hey! Heard of vegetables? They’re grrrreat!” Or I go with the whole, “Milk is totally half-pus” thing. JK, no I don’t! Because I don’t like to think about it either. Gross!
In conclusion: let’s all move to Philly for the weekend! I’d say forever but the hipsters get tiring. But for a weekend? Let’s DO THIS!
I officially proclaim this cake a celebratory symbol of the mountain gorilla population explosion in eastern Africa!
Also: their website design rules. Take a peek.
Donuts by Vegan Treats (!!!!) »
If you’re into decadent vegan desserts (uh, why am I even qualifying this?). You’re into decadent vegan desserts. If you live anywhere near Philadelphia, you probably have access to the most delicious vegan treats in town: Vegan Treats. My East Village obsession Atlas Café gets a few dozen assorted vegan donuts EVERY TUESDAY (coconut cream, Boston cream [pictured], rainbow sprinkle, chocolate, and cookies and cream). So, haul your going-to-get-so-fat-off-of-these ass to Atlas to get an cookies and cream filled donut! Yeah, I said it. Cookies and motherfucking cream. And by the way, Vegan Treats doesn’t do any of that cakey, depressing shit. They fry their yeasted donuts in delicious, soul-stirring oil. Yummy oil.
So like I said, head over to Atlas to get your treats. They come in fresh every Tuesday, but by Thursday if they have any left over, they might give you a discount. They charge $3 (yikes!) but at least something (your wallet) will be getting slimmer from eating all those calories.
[photo credit: Vegan Treats]