Posts Tagged ‘snacktime’

He’ll Be Back—To Break Your Back

Wednesday, August 4th, 2010

photo of a tractor that says ARNOLD

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed a bill that would have given farmworkers a minimal set of protections. According to Politics of the Plate:

SB 1121 was hardly a radical-sounding piece of legislation. Among other things, it would have given California’s 700,000 farm workers the right to take one day off out of every seven. Hourly paid agricultural employees would have received overtime pay after eight hours per day or 40 hours per week.

As the LA Times noted, farmworkers are the only workers in California who are not entitled to these considerations. Hmmm, why would that be, I wonder? Certainly not because lobbying groups like the California Farm Bureau Federation mounted an extraordinary campaign against this bill, as they have against health reform and other attempts to bring the status of farmworkers in line with that of the rest of the state.

It’s  funny, too when you read the CFBF website, where all the farm owners are complaining about the shortage of workers. How could one attract more workers? Maybe pay them more????? Like overtime? Nah, that would never work.

Smooth Moves

Sunday, August 1st, 2010

photo of display case of brightly packaged dog smoothie boxes

I keep meaning to take a picture of the sign in the pet food store by my house advertising dog smoothies, but then I found them on the internets and here we are. WHAT THE HELL SMOOTHIES FOR DOGS? As my friend Crystal put it, “It’s not like dogs are known for their refined palates. Howard eats garbage and feces.” (She used a dirtier word than feces but I am feeling prissy.) Seriously, though, what the hell?

Mr. Barksmith’s Cool Treats ™ come in Fruit Delight and Peanut Butter flavors and they are dairy, wheat, and gluten free—because so many dogs are vegan and  allergic to wheat. You don’t know how many times the dogs at my anarchist womyn’s reading group can’t eat the scones that a new person  brought because they have wheat and dairy in them. Some people just don’t understand revolution.

And if you are so revolutionary that you want to DIY your dog smoothies, don’t worry because there are, of course, recipes. I can’t wait until there are toppings and stir-ins available, because I think most dogs would want some used cat litter or three-day-old sidewalk pizza in their smoothie to spice it up a little.  Also how many dogs can even use a straw? Good grief.

DIY Prometheus

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

a "fire" made from pretzels and candy

The Eagle Rock School of Self-Reliance has “Wild Food Outings” where you forage and then make a salad, and classes in survival skills, but I would totally go for the class on fire-making!! It also has a salad so you are getting two for one.

FIRE WORKSHOP, $25. Learn to make fire from bow and drill, hand drill, magnesium, flint and steel, batteries, the sun, etc. We’ll also go for a short walk and collect a salad. Hahamongna Watershed Park, Location 2.

When I was in Girl Scouts (shut up) we learned how to make fire using pretzels. You use the pretzel nuggets to symbolize coals and wadded up newspaper, and the thin sticks for kindling, and the logs for logs. It is amazing I have retained this knowledge, but I could not tell you one thing about the Louisiana Purchase and I have to look up Manifest Destiny on a regular basis.


Thursday, July 29th, 2010

We’ve covered candy and costumes today which can only mean one thing: 95 DAYS UNTIL HALLOWEEN!

Let Us Give Thanks

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

anne geddes photo of a baby perched on a lettuce leaf

For living in a world where someone not only has a lettuce wrap recipe, but so many lettuce wrap recipes that she has a favorite one she revisits.

Revisiting My Favorite Lettuce Wrap Recipe

(Actually I see now that it’s a gluten-free blog, so it makes more sense. And yet, it is still funny.)

‘Ave A Cuppa Gaga, Luv!

Tuesday, July 20th, 2010

photo of lady gaga with a cup of tea in her limo

Lady Gaga is reportedly in talks to become the spokesperson for Twinings Tea.

Exploitation at the Crab Shack

Friday, July 16th, 2010

A new report out from American University and the Centro de los Derechos del Migrante describes the horrible conditions for women who work in crab picking operations in Maryland. The Washington Post writes:

The women, few of whom spoke English, said they lived in housing with backed-up sewage and no working stove, lacked transportation to buy groceries or seek medical care, were not trained for their jobs or told how their paychecks and taxes were handled, and had a hard time picking enough pounds of crabmeat to make minimum wage.

You can download the report here. It has data to back up its claims, but also has the stories and words of the women involved. It’s so rare to read from working-class laborers in the food chain–they are drowned out by the chefs, the bloggers (including us), the femivores and the rooftop farmers. God love the Eagle Street Roof Farm but they were on the radio again today.

Here’s the story of Elisa:

photo of ELisaIn 2000, when Elisa was 28 years old, she left behind her children – aged two, four, six, and nine – to migrate to the U.S. for the first time. In making this decision, Elisa followed in the footsteps of her parents and her husband, all of whom, like Elisa, had sought work in the U.S. because they could no longer make ends meet. Elisa spoke to the local recruiter, a prominent individual in the community who, at the time, was placing only women in the crab-picking jobs in the U.S. After three long and expensive trips from her hometown to the U.S. consulate in Monterrey, Elisa finally got an H-2B visa. She paid for all of her bus expenses from her hometown to Monterrey,and from Monterrey to Maryland. When she finally arrived on the Eastern Shore, she lived in a temporary home that she shared with seven other women; the house had a second floor bathroom that leaked onto the first floor.When she started working,Elisa realized that the male workers, who would bring the crabs to the women, were paid more and worked longer hours. The women, on the other hand, did only crab-picking work, and feared being sent home to Mexico if they did not work quickly enough. At times, there was sim- ply not enough work. One month, Elisa worked only one week. During that month, she sat at home, await- ing additional work. She often worried about the rent payments due to her employer, how she would pay for food to eat, and whether she could afford to send money to her family in Mexico.

And here is more from the report:

All of the women interviewed earned were paid a piece rate – typically $2.00 or $2.25 per pound of crabmeat picked. In order to earn the federal min- imum wage of $7.25 over the course of a 40-hour workweek, a crab picker earning $2.00 per pound must pick 145 lbs of crabmeat per week, which requires handling over 200 crabs daily. Women who are unable to work with sufficient speed to earn the minimum wage are either sent home, or
– in the case of more accommodating employers – are switched to an hourly wage rate.

The women interviewed universally reported experiencing cuts on their hands and arms while picking crabs with sharp knives. In some instances, the cuts allow a dangerous seaborne bacterium, vibrio vulnificus, to infect the skin, causing blistering or lesions.10 A surprising number of women reported either having suffered from or witnessing a co-worker suffer from the disease, which has a 50 percent mortality rate once it enters the bloodstream.

Who’s crabby now, eh? (You knew that was coming.) We claim to pay so much attention to “where our food comes from” but thinking about “who it comes from” is important to. The working conditions for these women are as toxic as any pesticide.

Say It Ain’t So, Joe

Thursday, July 15th, 2010

drawing of a refrigerator with a note on itDear Joe:

I hate my job. Do you hate yours? We probably hate ours for a lot of the same reasons–overworked, underpaid, little chance of advancement to anything remotely satisfying, no respect from our peers or superiors, terrible hours, a horrible commute, a dying industry, fluorescent lights, canned air, forced after-hours socializing, privacy-free cubicles, a pathetic health plan, and a constant feeling of despair. But you know what Joe? I think I might hate my job un poquito more than you hate yours. Want to know why?

Because I work with you.

Yes you, Joe. You and your goddamn lunch. Your goddamn lunch that you “cook” at work. Your goddamn lunch that you “cook” at work, but you put quotation marks around it because  “compared with what I usually do at home, this might not exactly be considered cooking.” Shut up, Joe! Shut up, shut up, shut up!

Making your lunch at home and bringing it is one thing. That is smart, healthy, and thrifty. But when I walk into the micro-kitchen we are equipped with here at work, Joe, I don’t want to have to deal with you and your sardines, and your “game” of making pasta with a teakettle. Perhaps you are finding your experiments “pungently satisfying,” but it’s a workplace, Joe. And the one thing a workplace should never be is “pungent.”

So I’ve “cooked” up this letter for you Joe, along with the rest of the office. We made a little game of it, and used the materials at hand–a piece of copy paper and a pen. And we’re putting it on the refrigerator for you to read instead of “cooking” today at lunch.


The rest of the Washington Post

The Creamy Ad That’s Too Saucy For The Aussies!

Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

According to this blog post, the Australian Standards in Advertising board has received, and dismissed, numerous complaints about the above advertisement for Philadelphia Cream for Cooking.

Among the formal complaints were comments to the effect that, ‘A woman spanking a man on the bottom is every bit as offensive as a man doing the same to a woman especially when there is sexual undertones involved. I really believed we had moved away from this form of sexist advertising,’ and ‘Complete objectification of men who women can treat any way they want. The ad sure would draw a lot of flak if the roles were reversed.’

They’re right of course–it would draw a lot of flak if the roles were reversed. But whenever I hear that argument I do want to make the point that truly “reversing” the roles would mean  women having more freedom, more money, and more political power than men. I’d settle for equality. And I’d spread it all over!

Keep On Truckin’

Tuesday, July 13th, 2010

robert crumb cartoon of a guy with a big foot

Taco trucks are so old-school, you guys. Now I only get my food at the CSA Farm Truck. Technically you have to be a member to shop there but you can sign up for the CSA on the spot and pick up “pickling cucumbers, radishes and yellow squash, along with other regional products from up north, like Walpole Creamery’s raw-milk maple walnut ice cream and Vermont Coffee Company’s fair-trade, organic beans.”

After that, I will wander over to the Marlowe & Sons slaughter truck, where I can kill a chicken or cut off a few ribs from a cow for dinner. Then I’ll stomp some grapes at the wine truck and, if I have time, pick up some bread at the knead truck. What could be more environmentally sound than boutique delivery of authentic food?