Women’s Strike Force! Engage!

Last night I actually got to watch Rachel Maddow on the day it aired (usually I watch in the mornings as I’m getting ready for the day), and one of the stories was about a reaction to Virginia’s anti-woman WTFery. Out of this hateful, hateful legislation has come a new PAC dedicated to defeat any politician that votes for these anti-woman bills: Women’s Strike Force. As they say on their site, “We are Republicans, Democrats, and Independents joining together to fight for women.Continue reading


I think I’m going off the deep end with the environment. More specifically with trash. I compost by freezing my scraps and then taking them to Union Square for the LES Ecology Center drop-off. I save plastic bags that I cannot avoid getting for that compost (bread bags, tortilla bags). I own reusable produce bags and of course reusable shopping bags. When plastic shopping bags happen, they are used for trashbags. I am really trying to reduce the amount of waste I produce. One thing that I just seemed not to be able to avoid is paper towels, specifically paper towels in public bathrooms. So much waste and no real alternative.

Sometimes you have air dryers. They are aren’t my favorite. They use energy to run and take so long to dry my hands. I always end up wiping my hands on my jeans (probably not the most sanitary thing, but eh). Dryers aren’t always there. That stack of paper towels stares at me. And I use them. And then I feel slightly guilty as I drop them in the garbage. What to do? I guess I could always just use my pants…

But then I was cleaning my juicer and I bought these Trader Joe’s reusable paper towel alternatives, and my brain made the connection! Reusable paper towels in my bag as I move through my day! They come in packs of two, so I can trade them off daily so I don’t end up molding in the plastic bag I keep it in (gross) and wash them when I do laundry.

I know this solution is not for everyone, and I got some interesting looks at Metropolitan Opera last week when I busted out this shocking blue towel in the bathroom. I laugh at myself and also feel pretty great not using the air dryers or the paper towels. And I’m becoming a little less trashy every day.


Here is a list of senators that oppose the ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC):

Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)
Sen. Lisa Murkowski(R-AK)
Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ)
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ)
Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA)
Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA)
Sen. Mike Crapo (R-ID)
Sen. James Risch (R-ID)
Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA)
Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS)
Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS)
Sen. Jim Bunning (R-KY)
Sen. David Vitter (R-LA)
Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS)
Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS)
Sen. Christopher Bond (R-MI)
Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE)
Sen. John Ensign (R-NV)
Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC)
Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK)
Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK)
Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC)
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
Sen. John Thune (R-SD)
Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN)
Sen. John Cornyn(R-TX)
Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX)
Sen. Robert Bennett (R-UT)
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT)
Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY)
Sen. Michael Enzi (R-WY)

Apparently, the biggest issue regarding ratification is that parents will no longer be able to spank their children. Yes, we should not ratify a treaty because people are afraid that if they spank their children UN forces will knock down their front door and wisk them away to… Geneva? New York?

Ratifying the Convention means that the US is committed to protecting and supporting children. It means we are committed to keep children safe and help them grow up happy and healthy. All children deserve this, including American children. Here is a video by my friend Emma about the convention:

If only 2 more senators decide to oppose ratification, it will not pass if brought to the senate floor. Call or email your senators and let them know that you believe in protecting and supporting America’s children.

An Open Call to Continental

I’m originally from Houston, and my family still lives there. I fly to Houston several times a year, and since Continental has its hub in Houston, it is the airline I usually take to there. I have a been a vegetarian for almost a decade. When I first gave up meat, Continental served great food to people who have non-mainstream diets. I remember Amy’s burritos and other organic foods. Yes, they were all frozen, but they were higher quality frozen. Then they decided to do away with these meals to save money. But instead of altering all of the meals to at least match an ovo-lacto, kosher* diet, they serve the same food they did before to everyone. No choices except on cross-country or international flights. My fellow alternate dieters and I have to purchase other food or just wait until we get somewhere (like home) with food waiting for us. I can’t tell you how much more this irks me even more now that I also have to pay to check my bag.

So here is my call to Continental: Please serve food that a wider population will eat. (Or give us a discount on your other fees.) And so you don’t have to actually do any initial research on meals that would be appropriate (and delicious) for everyone, here is an off-the-top-of-my-head list:

  • Bean burritos/tacos
  • Cheese pizza (I have seen this on a few flights, but not in a couple of years)
  • Nachos
  • Falafel/Sabbich sandwich
  • Grilled veggie sandwich
  • Cheese sandwich
  • PB&J

I bet any other vegetarian or vegetarian-friendly omnivores could name others. These things are cheap and good. Total crowd pleasers. So Continental, change your meal policies; cover more of your clients; go veg!

*I’ve noticed that vegetarian food tends to be kosher (or at least pareve), but I am by no means fluent in this diet. If anyone wants to educate/correct me, leave a comment!

Pro-Choice and Proud

I am a pro-choice person. Being one completely changed my life. I had lost my direction and gotten lost in a bottle or two (or four). I started volunteering because I needed something in my life that made me feel good about myself, good about my life, just good. Because of taking that first step, I was able to get on the path that I wanted to be on, and I absolutely give full credit to my work as a pro-choice activist for getting back into school and getting my life back together they way I envisioned it. Small steps can make big changes.

Part of what I do is to escort patients into the clinic. Even though this is New York City, there are regular, anti-choice harassers outside of the clinic every weekend. I am used to them. We strangely have a silent agreement about what they are allowed to get away with, in the interest of keeping the area outside of the clinic as calm as possible. The people in the neighborhood are very supportive of the clinic. Several times during a shift, they will thank whoever is standing by the door or across the street. Escorting in New York City is mostly a job of Good Mornings and smiles. But there is a reason we are all trained to deal with anti-choice protesters. Continue reading