It was a co-worker’s birthday and I confess that I had a little “revenge” in mind for those who keep making fun of me for being vegan.
I got a vegan chocolate cake – the actual one in the picture above – at an organic grocery store. After lunch, we all gathered around the birthday girl, sang, wishes were made, and slices of The Cake passed around. Everybody was asking me if the cake was vegan and I answered with a face as straight as possible and a little bit of laughter: “No way! I would never do that to you guys!” They all loved the cake and I heard several: “OMG it’s so rich!” “This is delicious,” “Where did you get this cake?” “I need to go to this store to get this cake!”
Once all plates were empty, I asked: “So, how did you like the cake?” Everybody said they loved it! That’s when I told them that it was a vegan cake. Their facial expressions of disbelief were great. We all laughed a lot and it ended up being a fun and positive experience.
Of course, I don’t expect anybody to become vegan because of a slice of cake. But just opening a little door for the possibility of trying something new is already a victory.
My friends will remember the rich taste and texture of the soft mousse chocolate cake dissolving on their tongues, filling them with sweet oral sensations – an exceptional positive sensory experience.
On the other side of the spectrum, some vegans share images of suffering cows and chickens. Most people who watch animal cruelty videos, feel the negative impact of the shocking images on a deep level. They will try to block these images and remember a negative experience for a long time. I’m not saying these images should never be shared.
I agree: animal-cruelty must be denounced!
I just wonder how effective those images are when we are talking about embracing a vegan lifestyle.
Which experience will encourage more people to try vegan dishes?
Since I’m not into cooking, I look for vegan treats I can bring to parties or office potlucks. The same organic market where I got the cake, also offers vegan ice cream, vegan doughnut holes, as well as cute vegan cupcakes for all occasions.
Do you have any vegan dishes you enjoy sharing with your friends?
Chimpanzees are people too, you know. Ok, not exactly. But lawyer Steven Wise has spent the last 30 years working to change these animals’ status from “things” to “persons.” It’s not a matter of legal semantics; as he describes in this fascinating talk, recognizing that animals like chimps have extraordinary cognitive capabilities and rethinking the way we treat them — legally — is no less than a moral duty.
Bees are dying in droves. Why? Leading apiarist Dennis vanEngelsdorp looks at the gentle, misunderstood creature’s important place in nature and the mystery behind its alarming disappearance.
A number of incidents have made the news lately about people treating animals badly while on vacation. In the Bahamas, several swimming pigs died after tourists gave them alcohol. A woman in Florida was arrested after posing on a sea turtle. Another sea turtle suffered indirectly from human actions after eating 915 coins.
What can we learn from this? Well, certainly that we should not give animals alcohol, nor sit on wild animals, nor throw coins into animal habitats. But these stories also serve as a reminder that when we travel, we are visiting environments that are new to us, but are homes to creatures who deserve our respect. As an advocate for animals, stay alert and speak up if you see animals being mistreated, wherever you may roam.
Michael Pollan, author and professor, U.C. Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism
Many say “the cow is already dead, if I don’t eat the meat, it will go to waste.” I can see your point of view. On the other hand, if you keep eating meat, you will be feeding the supply and demand chain. If there is no demand, the cows won’t be killed for meat. Instead of raising cows, those cattle farms could turn to plant farms. Makes sense?
You might say that it will never happen. If you take a look at the food evolution on the last few years, you will notice an increasing demand for organic products, grass fed cows and free range chickens. We have markets exclusively dedicated to organic products. Farmer’s markets are popping all over the country.
News about the dairy industry is starting to mention the raising consumption of soy milk, almond milk, rice milk, and coconut milk.
Change starts with one step in the right direction. Suddenly, it gets a momentum that revolutionizes the old assumptions. At one point in history, people believed the Earth was flat.
Nowadays, we hear more and more about plant-based diets, raw diet, whole foods, non- GMO produce, gluten-free, lactose-free, non-processed foods and the list keeps growing.
I won’t suggest that you change all at once. Start by incorporating vegetables and fruits to your plate and reducing the amount of meat. Once you begin to enjoy it, try to eat vegan for one week. Once feel more energetic and your skin clears up, try it for a month.
Check out the great blogs full of delicious and easy vegan recipes or visit a cool vegan restaurant.
Let me know how it goes.
Pollination: it’s vital to life on Earth, but largely unseen by the human eye. Filmmaker Louie Schwartzberg shows us the intricate world of pollen and pollinators with gorgeous high-speed images from his film “Wings of Life,” inspired by the vanishing of one of nature’s primary pollinators, the honeybee.
We hear a lot about grass fed cows and cage free chickens. It’s a step in the right direction, no doubt. If you have watched “Cowspiracy” or “Food Inc,” you know what I’m talking about.
The other day, my boss joked: “If the cow is grass fed, does it count as a vegan steak?” I laughed out loud – but no.
Do these cows and chickens get massive doses of hormones to grow, get fat, and generate revenue faster?
Do these cows and chickens get massive doses of antibiotics to prevent or treat diseases, hence becoming more and more resistant to them?
How about when they are about to be slaughtered?
The initial scene of a documentary I almost watched but had to stop because it was too disturbing, shows a cow trying to escape when her friend goes behind the doors to be killed. One can clearly see the panic in her eyes and desperation in her body. Can you imagine the rush of adrenaline in her blood stream, the stress, and the fear? All this adrenaline hormone will be served on your plate in the beautiful medium rare steak you are about to enjoy.
What effect will those chemicals, hormones, antibiotics, and toxins have in your body and on your long term health?
We all should look up info on animal agriculture and factory farming.