A simple girl in a complex world

Friday, August 29, 2003

Cheese is Addictive!

Scoff! Who knew?

Yeah, another food post. We Americans like our cheese. Even I sprinkle some on my salads so that I can claim I eat a bit o' dairy.

But, please. Cheese. Opiates? Uh, no. I've eaten cheese, and I've had morphine. Never the twain shall meet.

Someone smack this goon doctor, Dr. Neal Barnard. He's obviously a "people are sheep"er just like me. Where we diverage? I say, let 'em be sheep. Or deer in headlights. Their choice. Dr. Barnard's with Physicians (sic) Committee for Responsible Medicine. Read a couple of paragraphs, and whom does this organization remind you of?


Battle Cry!

Yeah, I had to jump on the bandwagon. Why on earth would I use boxing gloves instead of brass knuckles, though. Ponder!

What Is Your Battle Cry?

Running on the mini-mall parking lot, attacking with gilded boxing gloves, cometh Heather! And she gives a bloodthirsty cry:

"I'm going to brutalize you so heinously, you'll reincarnate as an X-file!!"

Find out!
Enter username:
Are you a girl, or a guy ?

created by beatings : powered by monkeys

Found...everywhere. I think I saw it on A Small Victory first, though (or possibly Absinthe and Cookies.

My favorite random generator? The Shakespearean insults generator!

And it's hosted by Pangloss, which will be the name of my next cat. I'll give him the proper "Dr. Pangloss" name, though.



This is just...great.

    SULTAN, Wash. (AP) - Days after 10,000 mink were released from a farm in southern Snohomish County, hundreds of the animals not yet captured have converged on local farms in search of food.

    The animals had killed at least 25 exotic birds and attacked other livestock in the area.

    "Over half our livestock was shredded. Murdered. Eaten alive," said Jeff Weaver, who discovered the dead birds on his farm Thursday. "These are not like regular farm animals. They're our pets."

    Weaver, who breeds Indian Runner ducks and Banny chickens, said his field was full of the animals Thursday morning.

    "One of the mink had part of a chicken in its mouth and was headed for the creek," he said. "They're starving. They'll kill anything in their path."
While I'm not too fond of the idea of mink farms, setting 10,000 free in the SAME area is going to make a mess...and did! (And that, of course, doesn't even take into account that these mink, as legally defined, are someone's PROPERTY). Two wrongs don't make a right. One may be morally wrong (raising mink presumably for only their coats - b/c you don't see too much ground mink in the meat case), but the other is both morally wrong and LEGALLY wrong.

The Animal Liberation Front claims responsibility. Expect more Animal Liberation Front posts. I should give some good air time to the Humane Society and the APA, while I'm at it.

So, let's ask those exotic birds if they feel "liberated." Bet they don't answer. The starving minks (mink?) will probably growl at you, too. And bite.


Updating the Blogroll

I'm adding four today.

Check them out.



Thursday, August 28, 2003

The PETA Post!

Long have they lain dormant! But, again, today, PETA manages to make the news in the US.

PETA's back, and it's in your face. Well, it is if you're David Novak, CEO of KFC. What follows seems almost like a surreal bad dream, where your friend Tonya takes you to Denny's, but there's no non-smoking section, and they won't serve you pizza in a timely fashion, and you throw a frenzied tantrum rivalling that of a two-year-old child? Oh, that was Tuesday's dream. This is the PETA post, which goes a little something like this (line borrowed from my esteemed spouse.).

PETA Gets Personal in Campaign Against KFC.

    NEW YORK (Reuters) - People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is getting personal in its campaign to force fast-food chain KFC, a unit of Yum Brands Inc., to raise the living and dying conditions of the chickens it sells.

    PETA, known for its relentless and celebrity-heavy campaigns, has begun sending volunteers to meet with Chief Executive David Novak's neighbors, pastor, country club, even the manager at his local Italian restaurant.

    The group sent Steve Gross, a management consultant and conflict resolution expert, to Yum's hometown of Louisville, Kentucky about a week ago to canvas the neighborhoods where Novak and Cheryl Bachelder, KFC's president, live.

    "While PETA continues to push for a vegetarian world, most people disagree," said Yum spokesman Jonathan Blum. "We have no comment on PETA's misinformation campaign."
Cha-ching! Score one tongue-in-cheek point for Blum.

Can you imagine? I mean, ding dong, doorbell. Who's there? Oh, a national obnoxious organization that just wants a few minutes of your time to blackball your neighbor. Lovely. What would I do? Invite them in and offer hamburger, I think.

    PETA says it will target Novak, Bachelder and KFC until the fast food chain forces reforms from its chicken suppliers.

    Former Beatle Paul McCartney (news) ran a full-page ad on behalf of PETA in the Louisville Courier-Journal in July, with an open letter asking Novak to improve conditions for the chickens used at KFC. Rap music producer and nascent political force Russell Simmons, called for a KFC boycott earlier this month, also on behalf of PETA.
Paul, be quiet and pay more attention to your new wife.

Simmons? Hmm. Kinda like me looking for my Instalanche. Hey, world! Notice me! I'll ally myself with something that gets my name in the papers. Cough. [Clears throat].

I know. As a PETA post goes, this one's kinda lame. Just like the group.



Wednesday, August 27, 2003

Carnival of the Vanities #49

I have two posts on Carnival of the Vanities this week, hosted at Creative Slips.

I haven't quite had a chance to read everything yet, but the collection appears quite good. If you're not visiting me from there, please take a look.


But _I_ Wanted to be Poet Laureate of the Alliance

Undaunted, that mad puppy blender
Insisted that fried dogs be tender
"These dogs should be thinner -
fit for my dinner.
"Pathetic!" (he spat at the vendor.)

(a.) What spawned this post b.) What else spawned this post).



Tuesday, August 26, 2003


This post has been in the making for a while now.

First, I'd like to discuss fat, fat, and fat. We've seen different articles floating about the Internet news - this state, that country. Obesity is a visible, high-ranking developed-world problem. That being said, I read this article yesterday.

It has a nice breakdown of the viewponts of personal responsibility versus evil corporations who prey on mindless people. I, of course, agree with "You're fat. Your fault." At the end of this article, there's this quote.

    The system is complex and there are many layers of control," she said. "Genetics loads the gun, and the environment pulls the trigger."
The she here is Ruth Kava of the American Council of Science and Health. Genetics, eh? You think fat kids from a fat family don't "learn" a few environmental factors along the way, too?

I digress before I really get started. Today, I found this.
    Faced with an epidemic of expanding waistlines as the Irish enjoy unprecedented prosperity, Health Minister Micheal Martin confirmed he was "very tentatively" examining slapping a levy on high-fat comestibles.
Mmm! Tax. And this isn't your traditional "vice tax." We all do have to eat, you know. And, as many of us probably don't know (merely due to lack of attention paid), some of the "fattiest" fatty foods are not what you would expect.

Almonds, pecans, and cashews! Oh My!

Yep - one serving of pecans feeds your body 220 calories and 19.2 grams of fat. Now, granted 60% of the fat is monounsaturated and 30% is polyunsaturated. These little pups might carry some awesome tax, no? But I doubt anyone governmental would think of it, thankfully, being too focused on the Big Macs and little White Castles we humans CHOOSE to consume.


So, fat. Fat makes you fat, right? No. Calories In - Calories Expended. This is either a positive or a negative number. If you want to watch your weight, watch your calories. Monitor your activity. Learn the burn. Obviously, metabolism plays a factor in how many calories a human expends, but exercise and a healthy/balanced diet have a broader, more pronounced effect (on your metabolism, too). More muscle = more metabolism (to feed the muscle).

I'm done with fat now. I'm on to carbs.

With the low-carb diet fervor, I find it amusing that governments and political watchdog agencies are frothing at the mouth about fat. But the most famous of the low-carb diets, the Atkins diet, makes me roll my eyes as quickly as some of the political fat rhetoric.

First, the low-down on Atkins, complete with sources. I'll give the sources, first. These comprise a small collection of differing opinions.

Needless to say, this is a tiny example. People are fervent and passionate about this diet. I'll all Phil Kaplan to sum it up here with a focus on glycogen.

    When you consume a healthful and supportive diet complete with proteins, carbs, and fats, the carbohydrates are broken down into glucose. Glucose is actually blood sugar. Some of that glucose is transported and stored in muscle tissue as "glycogen." This is sort of the fuel in your fuel tank. That's important to understand. Glycogen = Fuel.

    Glycogen is used to produce energy that fuels muscle contraction. ALL muscle contraction! Don't think of muscle contraction only as exercise. Any movement requires the contraction of muscle, from blinking your eye to rising from bed in the morning. As long as you're consuming carbohydrates you access and burn up stored glycogen, but quickly replace it with new muscle fuel. An understanding of that simple fact -- that carbohydrates are the source of muscle fuel -- should raise an immediate red flag toward anything that suggests seriously limiting carbs for any extended period of time.

    Once you understand the basic premise behind muscle glycogen, you should understand that the liver also plays a role in fuel storage. Some of the carbs that you eat ultimately wind up stored as liver glycogen. Think of the liver as sort of a "pump" for blood sugar. The brain burns more calories than any other organ in your body, and guess what it uses as its primary source of fuel. Glucose! Carbohydrates! As brain activity results in the "burning" of blood glucose, the liver accesses its glycogen stores to keep blood glucose in adequate supply. Again, as you expend glycogen, the carbs that you ingest replete your supply.
That about sums it up for me. While I may be an extreme case with my crazy 90+ mile bike weekends, average Joe (who gets some exercise) just may suffer from depleted energy and function if he were to try this diet. And any diet that asks me to give up ALL fruit for a week is just nuts.

Atkins also insinuates that you can be "lazy" and still lose weight. But there's that little problem of what is "weight." That's another post for another day.

Oh, but I can eat nuts on the Atkins diet, right, because they're fat.

And now what brought us here today...

So I'm cooking dinner this evening, and I have this really funny thought. I've already alluded to it. Can you imagine the uproar of Atkins ("I'll eat the cheese off the pizza; you eat the crust") dieters if the fat tax goes into place? I mean, yow. Yow yow yow. While many of the targeted "sinful" foods are loaded with both carbs and fat, who knows where the fat tax is going to stop. That one has the potential of being a steep slippery slope. "What, you mean we taxed 'em and they still aren't losing weight? Tax 'em some more! And, this time, include..."

I think we've had enough here. Read your labels. Learn what you can. Exercise as often as possible, and, if you're really serious, keep a food diary. If you suspect that your metabolism is flawed, seek a doctor's advice.

Caution, prudence, sweat, and resistance training. There ain't no easy way.



My blog is unique. I'm being paid (or at least I'd like to be) to tell you this.

Here's how.

1) Who else has random pictures of me gracing a website?
2) My blog lift heavy weights. It doesn't grunt, though.
3) My blog feeds the cats whenever the bowl runs dry.
4) My blog uses words like Boggle. That rhymes with my last name. You don't do that - do you?
5) My blog would like to use this opportunity to act as a public service announcement for the 80's television spots TV Pow and Bowling for Dollars (but not Columbine).

Thank you. That is all.



Sunday, August 24, 2003

Filthy Lie™

I'm late in posting my Filthy Lie™, but, as it didn't occur until today, how could I have posted it sooner?

I was riding my bicycle along the Annie's Frozen Custard route, when, at about the 25 mile point, this scary, bespectacled man leapt out from behind a road sign, and frightened the group of seven or eight people about a block in front of me. A small boy, probably about ten years old, shrieked and fell off his bike. The offender cackled, seized the boy's small bike, mounted it, and rode furiously away from the scene, cackling loudly and producing noises akin to what one would expect from the Green Goblin. Several people who did not know the boy laughed, for the offender's knees nearly touched his face while he pedaled.

The poor boy, stunned, began to cry.

"How odd!" thought I. The boy's parents dialed their cell phones - searching for any authority who could restore peace and justice to this small Illinois community and the wronged parties riding through it.

At the Custard rest stop about 10 miles later, the fast-pedaling bicycle thief sat licking a small custard cone. I immediately recognized the perpetrator as the one, the only, the Man Formerly Known as the Puppy Blender. Shocked (and appalled), I yelled "Hey! You! Glenn Reynolds! You stole that boy's bike. Return it immediately."

White Glenn sneered and consumed the remainder of his cone with a noisy CHOMP. "I am Instapundit" said he. "I fear no mortal woman." He turned to his filched bike and made preparations to leave.

I shouted more protests (eloquent, of course, though those around us were so engrossed in their custard frenzy they failed to notice either the irate woman or the funny-pedalling rider). "Insignificant!" he shouted. (I believe in retrospect that he meant that as a noun of direct address). "No Boggle for you!"

And that, my friends, is your Filthy Lie™. How rude!


Mileage and Other Weekend Feats

Sorry, no 132 for me like the venerable Phobia. I logged 93 this weekend, but the first 43 (Saturday) were hillier than normal.

On Saturday, I left my home and rode into University City (about 12.5 miles), stopped, snacked, and continued on east to Skinker (the dividing line between St. Louis County and St. Louis City), followed it south for about two miles, and turned to the right (west) onto Clayton Road, which I took for many, many miles into west St. Louis County. Back up north to catch Clarkson/Olive, and then to Olive and Fee Fee, and finally on home (about another 2.5 miles from there). Phew.

Not a bad route - about a mile and a half to two miles on Clarkson is a bit hairy - traffic wanting to merge onto the interstate, but it's otherwise a very pleasant ride. I'm going to try it the opposite direction next week to see if I can avoid most of that ugly traffic.

Sunday - today. Edwardsville ride. Pleasant, not too hot - about 50 miles. Then, because for some insane reason, since that was not enough, my friend Susan and I decided to hit the gym for an hour and a half (yes, really) of heavy upper body weight lifting. I'll be lucky if I can type tomorrow. Yow.

Two weeks. And, remember, if you have $3 spare dollars I'm SERIOUSLY BEGGING for sponsorship for the MS 150. Begging. Pleading. Offering to arm wrestle strangers on dirty street corners. Begging.