Archive for December, 2005

A First Step

I can easily see this blog turning into a catalog of my adventures in resisting meat.

The day after I returned The Lives of Animals, I had a just about all-day meeting outside of the office. Lunch was the typical salad, cold cuts, bread and condiments. While I have no problem avoiding beef, roast beef is something I still salivate for when it’s in front of me.

I passed it by without much effort though. Turkey always seemed the most harmless, I’m not sure why. And I gravitated towards it instinctively. I mean, I always kinda pitied those people you see in front of this kind of spread, piling their slices of cheese on top of their bread and tomatoes and lettuce. Just watching them always made me feel hungry in sympathy (in my own arrogant way).

But I went ahead and made myself a cheese and tomato and mustard sandwich anyway. Without the salad and zucchini soup it would’ve been much harder. Thinking about the turkey and roast beef as I ate, I thought it wasn’t such a bad tradeoff. This time, anyway.

There are bigger battles to face than some bland cold cuts that never leave me satisfied anyway. Still, it felt really good to refuse them just the same–it made up quite a bit for that hollow feeling inside that vegetarianism always seemed to hold in store, and that definitely gnawed at my insides when the meeting was over.

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Quicksilver

The last time I was this excited about using my Mac was when I got the computer itself and eased into the lickable world of OSX. I had read about Quicksilver previously, but it seemed too abstract and powerful at the same time, something to tempt and addle you with its promise–-hard to grasp, a perfectly named app.

Finally took the plunge some months ago and it took only a few short hours before I fell in LOVE. What everybody said was true: get on another Mac without it and you’re not quite sure how to go about everyday tasks. Without it, everything  feels tedious all of a sudden.

And I haven’t even tapped a hair of what it can do. You really do need to just download it and see for yourself. There are lots of great tutorials out there that help you get a sense of everything it can do. Let it sink in.

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Cat fight!

Flickr is cool. I’m not sure how I found it, but there’s a cat couples pool that I check every day. Apparently, there are bigger kitty freaks than me out there, who lie in wait with their cameras for their cats to do something, anything, that will appeal to people like me.

This pic cracks me up so much.

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“The Lives of Animals” – I have no more real excuses

Lives of AnimalsK borrowed this slim book from the library, and since I live so close, I offered to return it. With some time to spare before it was due, I decided to read it.

Ideally, I’d be able to just give up meat all together. I’ve taken baby steps towards it: no beef for years now, I don’t cook meat at home (except for some occasional bacon, or even less so, fish), a surprisingly speedy switch to soy milk six years ago. I learned that in order to be realistic, and to make any real progress, I should do what I can, where I can. And that field has grown incrementally over time. I don’t beat myself up that it hasn’t extended as far as I’d like.

But there’s no real excuse now. Everything around me facilitates vegetarianism: really good restaurants, ample meat substitute products that simulate the real thing, a partner who’s been one for over 20 years, good friends who cook really well with no trace of flesh.

And now, The Lives of Animals. Such well-argued cases on both sides, why we should not eat them, why it is our right to do so. The despair and sadness and lack of resolution that close the main part of the book: what is the answer? And finally, with the book returned to the library, what am I waiting for? I have no more real excuses.

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Borrowing Bliss

I love the library. Especially because I live so close to it. It’s the perfect distance: near enough to walk to, far enough that you feel you went somewhere.

Even in the cold, dragging myself away from the couch and the blanket, walking there always makes me happy. At this time of year it’s bracing, and I come back with a book in my hands so I can curl up even longer with the kitty. Until I have to venture out again for the next book that arrives.

Hibernating. Having a stack of books I’ve put on hold, and game rentals that get mailed to me, winter’s actually not so bad.

When I found out that I could borrow music too, current as well as out of print stuff, I just about flipped out. Those two songs by Adorable, K and I heard at the Shoegazers’ Ball? They had that CD. The first album from defunct local band, Carissa’s Wierd? That one too. Damn. Can’t even find that one at the local hipster record shops.

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Electric Six: “Danger! High Voltage”

I heard this on KEXP the other day and had to get it. Reminded me of Thrill Kill’s “Sex on Wheelz”: brazen, trashy, sexed up fun.

Listen to a preview on iTunes.

Looks like it came out 2 years ago–how did I miss this? The commercial for the DVD release of “Mr & Mrs. Smith” had this playing in the background. Does this mean I missed the window on it when it was cool? Oh well.

Put this one on blast and shake yo dirty ass.

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Trauma Center: Under the Knife – Get ready to sweat

Trauma Center - Under the Knife So I’m finally a doctor. Took a long time to get here, but now I work with childish yet spookily skilled anime nurses who tell me what to do. As you can guess, I’m a young man who’s got something to prove to the world. And I have powers: the healing touch. I like to think of myself as the Marvin Gaye of the OR.

So there’s this nasty parasite out there called GUILT that everybody’s suffering from. [What is it with all of the Catholic underpinnings? Final Fantasy X’s pits players against Sin] Only I can save them…

Part of why I got this game is to have another reason to shove my Nintendo DS into the hands of friends: here, operate. But I hate time limits in games. And Trauma Center can be pretty brutal on this front. This is the only obstacle to easy pick up and play-ability. Yes, it simulates the pressures of a real procedure, but c’mon, not at the expense of fun or accessibility.

Can’t wait to show this to my parents and brother. That Brain Training game might go over better with the former though.

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