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Vegan Attempts @ The Jetty Oxford

I went to a work lunch at a place not of my choosing today. But I wasn’t paying the bill, so I’m not complaining too much!

We went to The Jetty Oxford, at Bulimba. It’s right near the ferry dock. It had big fat no vegan food. Except, I think, chips and maybe olives. There may have been a salad they could have removed the cheese and dressing from. Er… appetising for a lunchtime meal? I think not.

So I talked to the waitress and she talked to the chef, and he was not helpful. But I think I took him unawares, because about two mins later he had the waitress come back out and offer to make me a mysterious risotto. I agreed.

Here it is:

I think it had fennel, asparagus, apple and maybe mint? The sauce was made from peas. That is not something I would typically choose ever, considering I don’t particularly like peas or asparagus and I’ve actually never eaten fennel. However, the chef didn’t know that and it was very good if you discount the fact that the flavours were not particularly to my personal liking (and actually, I found the flavours were not even too bad). It was infinitely better than chips, olives or nude, boring salad for lunch.

So thank you, The Jetty Oxford chef!

The moral of the story? You should never be afraid to ask if the chef can offer anything vegan, cos they just might!

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Review: 20 Natural Health Tips

I’m sick today, so when I saw in my twitter feed that Natural Papa had posted 20 natural health tips, it seemed like a timely miracle! Just what I was after. So off I went to look. (I’d just like to note also, that while it might be cold and flu season in the Northern Hemisphere, it’s really not here in Australia. Clearly I didn’t get that memo.)

Natural Immunity Booster Drink - everything is in the cup except the honey and the water.

Natural Immunity Booster Drink - everything is in the cup except the honey and the water.

While I sip my funky drink, here’s a high-level list of Natural Papa’s tips (in bold) with my responses (not bold).

  1. Wash your hands frequently. I’m a bit of a serial hand washer with a regular bar of soap. I avoid pump bottles of soap as part of my ‘avoid unnecessary plastic’ gig, and I really dislike antibacterials soaps (dudes, there’s supposed to be some bacteria around the place). I’m being particularly conscious of hand-washing at the moment since I’m touching snotty tissues all the time. Gross.
  2. Change your hand towels often. I washed the darned things on the weekend and I was sick by Tuesday. Humph.
  3. Clean the places that harbor the most germs in your house (door handles etc). Ok, aside from hand-washing, I could probably do this. But isn’t it a bit OCD to walk around wiping things all the time?
  4. Get plenty of sleep. If this was a month ago, I’d totally agree that I need to do this. However, the last couple of weeks I have actually been doing pretty well with sleep. I could probably still use more though… I’ve gone from 4 to 6 hrs to 6 to 7 hrs. Aiming for 8 hrs is probably not unrealistic.
  5. Stay hydrated (especially with central heating). Well, I live in Queensland. We don’t do central heating. Aside from which, it’s a week away from summer over here – it’s plenty hot enough, and not dry heat either (humidity is nice). Also, I drink more water than any other person I know (no, I’m not kidding).
  6. Take your vitamins. I try to eat foods that have vitamins in them naturally or through fortification (go Milo!), rather than having to remember to pop pills. Good for people who don’t eat like that though.
  7. Get sunshine on your body. This is so true. Unless I have a migraine or a fever, sitting in the sun makes me feel better when I’m sick. Some of my paler friends think this is weird, but it really helps! That being said, living in the Sunshine State, I get plenty of sun, so I don’t think this is the problem.
  8. Be active – move your body. I have been doing pretty well with walking from work to the busway over the last week or two, and I’m hoping that as of next week I’ll be able to start back at yoga. I could do more though.
  9. Be positive. I am usually positive, although sometimes work gets me down. I’ve been ok lately though.
  10. Laugh. Yeah, I could do more of this. But all the ‘funny’ movies are full of toilet humour, and that’s not really funny at all. I laugh more in general conversation with family and friends. Maybe I should go visit my folks after I’m well, or organise a social outing with work people. Now I’m in a slightly different position at work, I’m missing the chats and laughs I used to have a lot of with J-Mo. I do laugh with other people too, but I think they’re at a lesser level of crazy that J-Mo and I am. Hmm.
  11. Vitamin C. I’ve been drinking orange juice this week, like it’s going out of style.
  12. Eat more fruits and veggies. Yeah, I could do this. We’ve started a thing where on Sunday we chop up enough fruit to last the week and pack it into a bunch of containers, so it’s easy to just grab fruit and go. That’s been helping. I could do more with veges though… I really only eat them cooked, so if it’s a lazy night and I just want pizza, then I miss out. I think I eat more than most people… not that it’s a competition. Ultimately, yeah, I could use more.
  13. Drink your juice. See point 11 – it’s not fresh though.
  14. Use herbs for healing. Tomorrow, you will see this recipe I’ve tried out for a natural remedy drink. Interesting stuff.
  15. Use a neti pot. I just can’t make myself do this. All that water going up my nose… nope. Can’t do it. I’d rather go to the beach and let a wave do it for me. (Which is what I was planning for this weekend, if I’m better.)
  16. Get a massage. I’d love to do this! Who knows a non-expensive masseuse? Anyone? Really, do I need to ask Beuller again?
  17. Take it easy on the coffee and alcohol. I don’t drink coffee, and I think my body has been telling me to lay off the alcohol (not that I drank much in the first place). Every time I drink wine these days, I get heartburn within 15 mins. I don’t think I’ve had more than half a glass a week for the last two months. It gets too painful and Yankee Elv keeps having to finish it for me.
  18. Just say no (to going to work when you’re sick). I’m home, for the second day in a row!
  19. Avoid taking over-the-counter medications. I have been dosing up on the Sudafed, but only cos it was helping make the headache and fever go away a bit.
  20. Hug your family. I spent a fair chunk of last night lolling on Yankee Elv on the couch, and the previous night snuggling with Mr Teeny-bop whilst watching Xena, so I think I have this covered. Plus I hug the kitties and pat the dog all the time!

While Natural Papa’s list is really quite good, I’m unfortunately already doing most of this stuff. Poop. Maybe there was no escaping this illness. One of my colleagues yesterday (when I called in sick) suggested that maybe I’m just run down. There’s probably some truth to that.

I guess it’s just time to rest up and drink weird drinks.

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Preaching to the Choir

I read a couple of interesting blog posts the other day, written by the Change.org bloggers.

The first is a post called Animal Rights is a Mainstream Movement, by Stephanie Ernst on the Animal Rights blog. She discusses how she doesn’t like the way people, including herself, dismiss her concerns about animal rights as too extreme or radical to take seriously. I know where she’s coming from – I do it myself sometimes, playing down the seriousness of veg*nism and other animal rights issues because it’s too confrontational for most people. I had a rant the other day about how people were all wigged out about cows loose on the Gateway bridge after a cattle truck turned over. Considering they were probably going to be slaughtered for meat anyway I found that incredibly hypocritical, (not that I can talk, what with the cheese I still eat), and I said so to my co-workers. The got a funny glazed look in their eyes and sort of nodded and smiled until it was over.

It’s not normal to talk about things like that, and I know I often try to present the friendly veg*n face as I’m of the opinion that you catch more flies with honey, so to speak. I understand where Stephanie is coming from though, and empathise with her frustration. I also find it interesting that it’s far more socially acceptable for me to be an outspoken tree-hugging leftist greenie lesbian than it is to be a hardcore vegan, even though going veg is one of the most important things you can do for the environment, and you would think it would be standard for ec0-friendly folks. I guess we’re a fringe group within a fringe group.

Pigs should live happily, like this cute piggy I saw in Mooball, NSW. He came when I called to him! So cute.

Pigs should live happily, like this cute piggy I saw in Mooball, NSW. He came when I called to him! So cute.

The second post is called Living the Animal Life, and it’s by Natasha Chart on the Sustainable Food blog. The topic is different to the Animal Rights post, but having read it immediately after Stephanie’s post, I got a similar message from it. Whether that was the message the author intended to convey is debatable, but one particular line sounds so like something I have said in my ‘carrot or the stick’ approach that it kind of hit home to me, especially in contrast to the horrible descriptions that followed. Natasha was talking about a law that would limit the use of anti-biotics in cattle, which Obama supports, and she said:

‘It won’t pass. Even that’s okay I suppose, considering how the discussion is off to such a good start.’

Later in the same article, she talked about how the animals are living in their own effluence – conditions so bad the anti-biotics are all that’s keeping them alive – and so introducing laws limiting anti-biotics really means changing the way animals are farmed, which is why the bill is so contentious. Now, remember the line from the start of the article? She doesn’t think it will pass, but that’s ok because it’s sparked off good discussion. Isn’t that awful?

At the same time, that’s so something I would say. (I promise I’m not dissing you, Natasha).

Taking the middle road is a valid action in some cases. I’ve been known to tell people who are against same-sex marriage that all I want is my legal rights. That’s not true. I want to get married – I want the social status that comes along with marriage, all those intangible things that have nothing to do with law. I’m not going to convince anyone with that argument though, so I water it down. I do the same with the environment at work. I tell people  if they have to print, to at least do it double-sided. Really I want to tell them to read on the screen, gosh darnit, since they have their computers turned on anyway. There are some people who still review on paper. Seriously. I tell people it’s a great effort if they just cut back on meat one meal per week, when I really wish everyone would give it up for good.

I’m very good at taking the middle ground, and there are times when that’s appropriate. When we’re preaching to the choir, however – even just talking to ourselves – why can’t we be upfront? Sometimes, I want to have the freedom to say what I mean and not get that funny, glazed, nodding and smiling look.

So! Onward to same-sex marriage, reading on-screen and giving up meat for ever!

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