Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Eat this.

In the spirit of holiday giving, I offer to you, dear readers, some "fun" facts I have gathered today while reading for my social policy class. Assuming that most of you have not yet had the chance to study the "American Social Welfare Policy: A pluralist approach" (5th edition) textbook (and if you have, you probably haven't yet gotten to Chapter 17: The Politics of Food Policy and Rural Life), I have picked out my favorite tidbits of knowledge to share with you now:

- Consumers, retailers, restaurants, and farmers throw away one-quarter of the U.S. food stock (almost 100 billion pounds of edible food) each year.

- The average length of a state food stamp application is 12 pages. Ten states have applications between 19 and 28 pages long. Most food stamp applications are longer than the applications for a federal firearms permit, a federal home mortgage loan, or a school bus driver's license.

- Over 70 percent of all antibiotics in the United States are fed to healthy farm animals.

- Agriculture is the most dangerous occupation in the United States.

- The life expectancy of migrant farmworkers is 49 years compared to the U.S. average of 75 years.

- A single Utah hog operation raises 2.5 million hogs a year, producing more waste than the entire city of Los Angeles.

- A "Free Range" label claims that a meat or poultry product (including eggs) comes from an animale that was raised in the open air or was allowed to raom. However, the regulations do not specify how much of each day animals must have access to fresh air. In poultry, the USDA considers five minutes adequate exposure to be considered free range.

- Every minute, the United States loses 2 acres of productive farmland to urban sprawl - shopping malls, housing subdivisions and the like.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


In the spirit of Thanksgiving (and in the spirit of not losing all my readers as a result of only posting links and photos for the past month), I have composed a list of people and experiences for which I am thankful this year:

I am thankful for my friends on the west coast who supported me in my move across the country even when it meant that we would no longer be in each other’s lives on a regular basis. I am thankful for good cooking and Survivor nights and conference crises met with good humor and the opportunities and challenges I faced while working out there. I’m thankful for the amazing volunteer opportunities I had while living in the Bay Area, and the incredible people with whom I came in contact through those opportunities. I am thankful for the renewing of old friendships, and for days at the beach, and days by the pool (neither of which I had enough of in my California life!). And I am thankful to the friends from the west coast who have made it out here and made it a point to get together.

I am thankful for my family - my sister for road tripping across the country with me, and my parents for their never-ending unconditional support. I am thankful for my aunt and uncle for letting me do dresser restoration in their garage and to my second cousin for being sure to call me when she came to town last weekend so we could catch up. I am thankful for my grandmother, aunts, uncles and cousins – both the ones we were able to see on our road trip and who opened up their homes and hearts to us along the way – and the ones who didn’t fall along our path.

I am thankful for the friends and families with whom I have connected (or reconnected) here on the east coast. I am thankful for the friends who have motivated me to get out of the city and up to Vermont, for the friends who have motivated themselves to come into the city to visit, and for the friends who have helped me get out and see bits of Boston I otherwise would not have made time to see. I am thankful for all the amazing families for whom I babysit, and the children who bring joy to my life each week with their cute nicknames for me (“Feedee”) and hugs and giggles. I am thankful to the friends who keep trying to see me despite me being too busy with school work to have a life, and to friends who I only knew tangentially, who have made efforts to get to know me better and invite me to be part of their lives since I’ve returned to this coast.

And I am thankful for everyone in between – the amazing women I reconnected with at our camp’s 100th celebration, and the dear friends who honored me so greatly by allowing me to officiate their marriage this fall.

It has been an incredible year, and I am so grateful to the many people who have made it so. I hope that people I know who read this blog see themselves somewhere above, because what I am trying to say with my comprehensive list is that if you were in any way a part of my life in this past year, I am thankful for whatever role you played.

Much love and appreciation to everyone.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

It's amazing I got into grad school, really.

Usually not such a good sign when the professor has to make a correction on the cover page...

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

In which Britney finally comes to her senses...


Britney Cuts K-Fed Loose
by Sarah Hall
Tue, 7 Nov 2006 02:08:28 PM PST

Britney Spears has apparently decided that Kevin Federline's 15 minutes of fame are up.

The pop star filed for divorce Tuesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court from her husband of two years, citing irreconcilable differences as the reason for the split, according to her court documents.

Spears, 24, requested physical and legal custody of the couple's two sons, one-year old Sean Preston and two-month-old Jayden James, with visitation rights for Federline, 28.

She waived her right to spousal support (a no-brainer) and requested that each party pay their own legal fees.

A representative for Spears had no comment on the split.

For all the latest juicy details on the split, tune into E! News at 7 p.m.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

A most excellent read...

...especially if you're a Pats fan.

The Sports Guy had a great article on

(Not that I read it, of course, since I have been hard at work all morning on the paper that was due last Tuesday. I'm just saying, IF I had had time to read it, I would have found it to be a great piece of writing.)

Saturday, November 04, 2006


For anyone who has ever been in community theater, known anyone who has been in community theater, or seen a community theater production, you have got to listen to this.

Scroll down to the 10/20 show entitled "Fiasco!" and click on the blue icon next to it.

Don't be afriad that it looks like an hour-long show. The Peter Pan section is first, and lasts only about 20 minutes. It's worth it - I promise.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Get Thee to a TJ's

Hello friends -

Apologies for going silent for a bit here... Sickness, followed by a weekend getaway to a wedding, followed by more sickness has left me a bit off my game.

I'm back, with an enthusiastic posting to tell anyone who lives anywhere near a Trader Joe's to GET THERE ASAP and buy yourself a package of the special holiday edition Joe-Joe's.

For those of you not familiar with the regular Joe-Joe's cookies, they are the TJ's version of an Oreo, but without the partially hydrogenated oils. They're good. But they have absolutely NOTHING on the new, holiday Joe-Joe's.

Imagine this: crunchy, chocolatey cookie outside, and vanilla bean cream inside... with CRUSHED CANDY CANES.

I have died and gone to heaven.

I am going to get very fat this holiday season, but I will be fat and happy.

Join me.