Friday, June 1, 2007

Being The Change


"Be the change you want to see in the world."- Mahatma Gandhi

Last week we had a couple of days of summer swelter and yes, it portends to be a blistering summer at that. Never beginning my day without first consulting weather.com, I read about the air stagnation advisory that was in effect. Well, actually that fact was already quite evident by the lack of any breeze coming through the window and pure heat; it was only 10am.

I lowered down my super-effcient honey-comb blinds to block out the heat, made some iced coffee & turned on the table fan. Booboo lay on top of her kitty condo as I lay a damp wash cloth over her. I am considering taking her for a lion cut & she may be getting daily baths to keep cool as needed to avoid heatstroke which pets can be susceptible to, especially a furry kitty like Booboo. This is how we are going to try to beat the heat and avoid using the air conditioner completely if possible. As the summers become more & more unbearable because of greenhouse gas emissions, we respond in kind by turning up the air conditioner which in turns causes more emissions- it's an ugly and dangerous catch-22 and it's got to stop.

That's not to say that I can't appreciate the nice frosty air for the first 5 seconds when I walk into a store on a hot summer day, however, it never ceases to amaze me how the store will blast the air conditioning & leave the doors wide open or the air is on so cold that everyone has a sweater on. It shouldn't surprise me at all because we are a culture of conspicuous consumption & waste. I know most will be turning up the air conditioners this summer, please make sure it is energy-efficient. You can also still keep cool without having to turn air to the coolest temp; the temp at 68F will still be comfortable because the outside air will be hotter than that...

Last week was also a full week of photo shoots which are always catered with an over-abundance of food. There is always a vegetable of some sort and I am always able to put something together. Breakfast is always limited because it's normally eggs, bacon, yogurt & pastries, but I find a way...hash browns, tomatoes & fruit!

I make my own salad with mixed greens, grilled veggies & some strawberries. I have to beware the balsamic dressing though because the caterer loves to put in strips of parmesan which I thought at first was ginger...

On this day, I made lunch mostly from the snack platter- hummus, pita chips, stuffed grape leaves, cornichon, with salad & rice...
And on this day, I watched as Fcat worked really hard blowing bubbles at pretty girls...those were candy bubbles & I tried one- yuck- tasted chemically sweet & soapy- but it was vegan!

Here's are some props for the shoot and mostly vegan too if one wanted to partake in high fructose corn syrup & chemicals.

Just recently heard that a friend's wife is considering going vegetarian! The fact that she's even thinking about it is exciting. I'd like to think that I planted a seed when we had a brief conversation about my veganism over a year ago when we were all out for drinks after a shoot, but I'm sure though the real reason for considering going veggie are the two cats that they rescued off the street. Those two little creatures that bring pure love into their home are powerful motivators!

And last but not least on the exciting news front, my sister of the Anony-mouse blogger comments heretoforth known as SKO is here for the summer! Yay! She has spent every summer with me in NYC since she was 7 years old. Um, yes, there is an age difference- we are 18yrs apart and yes, she is my full biological sister. She is of the meat- eating variety, but she has taken to vegan eating quite well in the week that she has arrived.

We celebrated her arrival with a dinner at Gobo, a yummy asian fusion vegan restaurant on the Upper East Side. SKO was only open to going there because I told her that the Roti Canai dish there was as good as at Penang, a nearby non-vegan indonesian establishment and I added that I could partake in that curry/roti goodness only at Gobo. She acquiesced only because we walked twenty- something blocks in the heat and we saw Gobo's before Penang.

She loved it all and declared that we must come back. Whew! At times, she is an extremely picky, hard to please teen- you know she likes tomatoes, but not cooked tomatoes, no onions only if they are well-hidden & blended into food, no bell peppers, no scallions...

We start at Gobo's with their delicious cranberry walnut bread & pumpkin buttery spread.
Then onto the delicious Roti Canai...
My favorite, the Pine Nut Medley Lettuce Wraps...
And then we split the Sweet & Sour Sesame Protein- which SKO announced was much better than the chicken version. Ah be still my beating heart...she might have some vegan conciousness running through those veins.
And here she is SKO, using Daddy & sister sanctioned emergency credit card to take her sister out for dinner for the first time ever!

My sister wants to go back to Gobo's and have the yummy Mango Protein (like mango chicken, but better). She also tells me that as of late, steak does not taste as good as it used to and she enjoys it less and less. Hope springs eternal and I continue to be the change as much as I can.

16 comments:

b36Kitchen said...

i hate walking past stores on hot hot days with there a/c blasting, doors open and you can feel the ice ice ice cold air 8 feet away from the door on the sidewalk..what a waste.

it's great that your sister has taken to vegan eating so far while staying with you..good luck!

JENNA

Theresa said...

Being a positive vegan role model, and feeding her lots of yummy food is probably the best way to waken your sister to veganism.

I agree about the air conditioning--my office at uni is so freakin cold; they even air-condition in winter! It can't be cheap, and everyone knows it's bad for the environment... I don't know what they're thinking.

Rage And Love said...

i just found your blog and I must say that your cat is be-u-tee-full!! Sadly I'm allergic to cats...

SKO/ANONY-MOUSE? said...

Argh. You've outed me. :O

Bit weird, to type a comment in your house, on your computer, on your blog.

Vegan eating=good stuff (even for a girl of 'the meat-eating variety)

Monkeywaterhorsesquishface=cute, but fierce

Me in throde picture=throde

We (as in the royal we, of course) ♥ you and your blog vair much and we hope you update! :D

scottishvegan said...

I am with you on the air conditioning thing! Why do they have to have it so cold? I’m sure your little plates you put together at photo shots are healthier than the other options! And it looks like you are getting some pretty yummy meals out of it! Gobo’s looks great…that cranberry walnut bread and pumpkin spread sound heavenly! That’s so fun that your sister is staying with you perhaps she will be a vegan by the end of summer?! :)

Vegan_Noodle said...

I know what you mean about the AC factor, here in Houston I essentially carry a winter jacket wiht me in the summer when going out to eat. It's ridiculous! Yummy looking food as well. Have fun with your sis in town!

Kati said...

I totally agree about the AC. In macrobiotics, they say that if you eat a natural diet in tune with the seasons, your body will be able to handle temperature shifts better...so, this is just one more instance of how diet can affect so many seemingly unrelated things.

I'm glad your sister is adjusting to the vegan eating. I hope she continues to enjoy it and you have a fun summer together!

Booboo is so cute laying in front of the fan! My cats get so lethargic when it's even a little hot outside, but they are both shorthairs so I don't really have the option of getting them haircuts. I guess they will just have to deal with it like the rest of us!

laura jesser said...

It makes me mad to have to carry a sweater with me in the middle of the summer (in Georgia?!!) but you're right, they blast it full-on. I try to deal until about 80 degrees--then the A/C has to come on!

I hope your sister continues to enjoy vegan eating! Yum!

Tamara said...

I totally agree about the AC. Grr!

Just found your blog, and I love-love-LOVE the pictures of your beautiful cat. We can't have a cat because our 3 dogs might eat one (seriously, I'm afraid), but I totally know what you mean about your furry babies opening your heart up to veganism. Mine have definitely influenced me on my path to veganism and animal activism.

Glad I found you; enjoy your visit with your lovely little sis.

Vincent Guihan said...

Wow, photos look great. I especially like the salad with strawberries. Very vibrant!

bazu said...

You are so right about the A/C... I can't believe how blatantly people disregard the basic rules- don't make it ultra-cold, don't leave the doors open, ugh.
It's so cool that your sister is visiting you- I hope all of you, Booboo included stay cool! And I hope your friend has success in her switch to vegetarianism- I think she'll be happier and healthier!

urban vegan said...

Those pictures of BooBoo are hilarious...so unladylike ;) I also dislike AC, but I have it on tonite since it's 95 degrees here today. Actually, the photo of Fcat blowing bubbles is also a hoot. It looks sort of surreal.

So glad your sister is visiting. I love Gobo, and I especially enjoy ordering their exotic bubble teas.

KleoPatra said...

All that food... i can hardly decide which is best.

i loathe air conditioning... and i can feel BooBoo's comfort meter go up in front of the fan. Love the photos of yer kitty. Sweetness!!

Happy to hear about your sis!! Go sistahs!!

You are already so cool in my book, but i wish you continued comfort in your abode and about!!

Melody Polakow said...

How fun! Your sister must be soooo thrilled spending her summers with you.. how I would have loved that as a teen.

We try not to use our heat or a/c as much as most people... it is hard... because I do not tolerate heat much.. but man.. it's hard to justify sometimes.

Village Vegan said...

It's so funny that you blogged about photo shoot food, because I was just thinking about that! I'm a fashion intern at a Hearst mag, and navigating the food at photoshoots is always interesting...I usually stuff myself with fruit salad for breakfast (pineapple! strawberries! plums! can you believe no one else was eating it?) and try to make do with salads at lunch. Anyway, on that note, I have to say that it's really refreshing to see that someone can be in the fashion/art world and not give in to the desire to have zillions of unnecessary, wasteful items. (Like fur shoes...it makes me so sad when I have to handle the fur stuff in the closet. And really, fur shoes are completely, utterly, nothing more than a cruel status symbol.)

I don't have AC either...and my room looks into the airshaft, and I get NO breeze (or sunlight), except for the rancid air that floats up from the Chinese takeout on the first floor. Oh how I love NYC. But I totally agree with you about people completely wasting their AC. It's really depressing.

Vicki's Vegan Vice said...

the whole air-conditioning to survive the rising heat is such a scary concept & weighs heavy on my mind. Thanks for talking about it & being a catalyst for change. Have a fun summer with your sister!

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