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Day 130 - Stars and Mexican Food

Stars and Mexican Food

I am not going repeat what I already wrote here. A quick synopsis, starting August 1st, 2010 I will publish a picture I take that day everyday for a year (well to be exact I will do this everyday until July 31st, 2011). This is the 130th of those photographs. Also, there is a Flickr collection called “The Awesome Leftovers” where I put the daily shots (if any) that didn’t make the cut.

We went to eat some Mexican food after our challenge. We were challenged to lay on the floor somewhere public for 10 seconds, we did it for 30! :] We chose Whole Foods because it was busy. You should try it sometime. It was freeing, Day 130 – Lay Down.

Booyah! :]

-Cara

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I decided to get a full time job and such, but only if it was for something, meant something. That way I have money of my own and do good, a win-win situation.  I am blessed to have insurance, so I have a luxury that most do not, to work basically wherever I want. Shout out to 30 Rock, you know who you are. :]

Anyway, I applied to the ASPCA and ACORN. I found both on Idealist. I knew all about the ASPCA, as my pets’ veterinarian is at Bergh Memorial. ACORN, I didn’t know much about. I remember when I was younger, working at Whole Foods in Chicago, a bunch of people wearing red shirts with ACORN signs and voices filled up the parking lot. They were protesting that Whole Foods needed to join the union and they were super serious about it. They were cool, you know after we blocked the door to the store and said they had to walk through us to get in…then people ended up talking, etc., etc. The thing is back then Whole Foods was not a publicly traded company, so it was cool, none of us ever thought we needed a union, we made bank, awesome benefits, you don’t know. We kids were living the high life. I know some people who still work there or did not too long ago and man they hate it now. I think a lot of Whole Foods employees may think differently now then back when it was about something. I won’t go on, but feel free to learn more here.

The point is I am way behind on my writing after starting the job at ACORN last Monday and having a life that needs to be handled. That is what has been up. I do recognize that I need to do this and not fall behind. Like I said from the beginning, this time I am serious. :]

You’ll see…

-Cara

This recipe my friend Lexi gave to me like a hundred years ago when we were just kids working at Whole Foods. This was before Whole Foods became a publicly traded company [I am a Whole Foods stockholder as when we worked there we were given stock and/or allowed to buy it cheaply. I just want to be honest and above board. ] and sold out. John Mackey, what a joke. I can say this as I experienced it firsthand. I never had such a great job before they went public. It was the best work environment and best people to work with. We all loved our jobs so much that it positively affected how we treated Whole Foods customers. It wasn’t a hassle or annoying, as we were respected and treated so well that we want to excel at our jobs and do what was right for the company. We were paid really well and had amazing benefits. It is the simple theory of treating your employees well and not only will they work hard, but you will make more money and a have a better life yourself. We were a true community and since that time I have never experienced that type of job.

The issue was to get the real big money they decided they needed to go public and it became no longer about us, it was about the stockholders and their happiness. Everyday, things changed more into a factory environment with dress codes, piercing policies, green aprons, whatever the stockholders wanted Mackey gave them. It became a place where if you did not agree with them they would fire you based on untruths. The place is not a good place to work anymore. I guess caring about what you do and how you do it doesn’t pay for a 720-acre ranch in Texas. Sorry, to get all up in it that way. January 1992 was just a sad time in history for all of us that worked there. If you don’t believe me here are some links I found from others like me who worked for this company and saw Whole foods devolve into what it is today.

Whole Foods Fight

Unconscionable Capitalism: How Whole Foods Values Policy Over Employees Well-Being

Good company to work for? (applying, business, change, part-time) [scroll down on this one to see some ex-employees of Whole Foods opinion.]

The Whole Foods Cure For Herpes

That’s enough for now, but if your not convinced do a search and you will find thousands of articles on what it is to work for a company with a nice exterior, but not so clean an interior.

To quote an ex-Whole Foods employee south2nd:

Ugh, stay away from Whole Foods. Before they became a publicly traded company, they were pretty great to work for. It has completely changed. They have eliminated most of the programs that made them different. The associates are not treated well, the pay is low, and the the atmosphere is very clique-ish and cutthroat. I would not recommend it unless you hate yourself.

01-19-2008, 08:57 AM

OK, I really got sidetracked from my recipe…sorry…bringing it back now. This recipe was originally Lexi’s but since then I have changed it a bit, it is now Lexi and Cara’s Special Organic Yam Yams or Sweet Potatoes recipe.

What You Need

as many organic sweet potatoes or yams you want to eat

as much organic unsalted butter you want per potato (I usually put like two tablespoons cut into squares and put along the potato)

as much organic brown sugar as you want per potato (I usually do about two tablespoons or less depending on the size of the potato)

as much organic honey as you like (I usually use a tablespoon)

a tablespoon of organic beer

What To Do

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees

Wash your yams/sweet potatoes

Cut them into quarters

Place them on a sheet big enough to wrap up said yams or potatoes

Add butter, brown sugar, honey, and a bit o’ beer.

Wrap them in their original shape with foil.

Put on a baking pan or may I suggest a dish with some depth as the juices will leak out of the aluminum sometimes and you don’t want to waste any of the good stuff.

Bake at 350 degrees for an hour or until they are nice and soft.

Put them and all the juices in a serving pan and enjoy.

I want some now!

-Cara


Reason 92 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian:

It is estimated that 30 percent of the world’s fish catch is non-target species, or “bycatch.” Fishers–typically in the cruelest most expedient ways–separate out the discards, only to dump them overboard, dead and mutilated. Bycatch from driftnetting is estimated at 85 percent of catch; despite a U.N. moratorium, Italy, France, and Morocco continue the hugely destructive practice. Shrimp fishing alone is responsible for over 27 percent of the world’s bycatch, despite producing less than 2 percent of global seafood.

Kiss

I have been dreading doing the reviews of stuff people have sent me. It isn’t that I am not opinionated, because ask anyone around…opinions I’ve got! I guess I feel pressure to say good things, because I received the stuff for free or maybe because I was raised to be thankful for whatever anyone gives you…or because it feels like….who knows what…it doesn’t matter because I need to do these reviews as I said I would, so here we go…

I’ll start with Eco Lips organic lip balm. I selected the vanilla flavored hemp 98% organic lip balm. The 2% that is non-organic seems to be D-Alpha Tocopherol [vitamin E] and the Rosmarinus Officinalis [rosemary] leaf extract. It is interesting that they can’t get organic rosemary leaf extract or organic vitamin E. I will see what I can find out about that. This product is also cruelty free, non GMO product, and petroleum free. Made in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. GBA! ;)

Let me give you a little bit of history about me and lip balm. I love it. I can’t get enough of it. I have tried a million different types of lip balms. I think it started when I was the Body Care buyer at Whole Foods for a few years. One of my duties as a Body Care Buyer was to sample all lip balms and bring in the best ones for our consumers. I feel as though my experience in lip balmery makes me an excellent candidate to review said lip balm. :)

I like the green label with the silver packaging of the hemp Eco Lips lip balm. It is a throwback to futuristic movies in the 70’s with a hemp leaf square in the middle. :D The vanilla smells like high end vanilla extract you use while baking. Then when you put it on your lips, it is a silky softness that stays. I am really impressed with it. Out of the three different Burt’s Bees lip balms I have and a plethora of other such brands right now Hemp Vanilla Eco Lips is my favorite and that’s saying a lot.

So of a rating of 1 to 5 I give this a solid 4 and it would have been a 5 but for the 98% organic shaved off a point.

OK, review one done and I feel good. Stay tuned…more to follow.

Best.

-Cara

UPDATE:

I have learned from an employee at Eco Lips after asking, Why do you all make it 98% organic instead of 100%…” that “Vitamin E can be extracted in a 100% NATURAL process, but not organic. This is very complex and has to do with chemicals and molecular bases, but it is just the way it is at this point in time.” and he also wanted to make sure I knew, “that Burt’s [Bee] is not at all organic, but only 100% natural.” I think both are important points, so I am sharing them here with you. You are welcome!

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Animal agriculture routinely mutilates farmed animals for its own convenience and often simply out of habit. Debeaking, branding, castration, ear notching, wing and comb removal, dehorning, teeth clipping, and tail and toe docking are ever-present tasks on today’s farm and ranch. Laborers, not veterinarians, perform the surgeries, employing restraint, not anesthesia.

Frame

I was thinking of what to write about for Friday’s Eco-Shopping entry, when I remembered this frame I got working as a buyer at Whole Foods. The frame is made out of an old car radiator. The company’s name is J Line Design out of San Diego, CA. I searched all over the World Wide Web and found nothing. :( They are the inspiration for today’s blog entry. I looked for three products made out of some sort of recycled auto parts. As a side-note if anyone knows what happened to J Line Designs please let me know.

Chess

The first thing I found was a chess set made from recycled auto parts. The artist who created this chess set is Armando Ramírez. Ramirez collects the leftover metal pieces off a die machine and shapes them into the pawns, horses, and parts of the kings, which also feature cogs from a car’s electrical system. The queens are made from screws, cogs and bearings from a car’s electrical system. The bishops are shaped from sparkplugs and the towers from cogwheels. The board is made from a metal sheet and features ornate iron wires and bendix caps taken from a car’s electrical system.

It looks pretty cool and is on sale for $98.95…That’s a steal in N.Y.C. and it is a green choice. I don’t need a chess board as I spent my childhood playing chess, striving to beat my father, the smartest person I know…and the day I did I never played again…I’m like that.

Martian Lady

She’s a Martian made from a muffler!!! Excited? If so check out Muffler Art by Quick Stop Muffler Shop and Auto Service in Decatur, Alabama. There are all sorts of creatures and Aliens. I would call first to make sure they are still in business before placing an order or stop by 1303 6th Avenue S.E., Decatur, Alabama 35601 and tell them Cara sent you. ;) Maybe I’ll call tomorrow and ask if they are still open. UPDATE: I called today and they are still open. I also found an email…I should be a detective! :)

Nice

Last but not least, Simple a nice little shoe company out of Santa Barbara. A company that uses recycled tires on the out soles of their super fresh looking ecoSNEAKS… For now there is free shipping which is always a sweet deal. :)

Shop right.

-Cara

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By some assessments, the H5N1 strain of bird flu, which originated in Asia and is now spreading across Europe and Africa, has the potential to disrupt life on planet Earth second only to global nuclear war. Others predict that if the strain mutates, perhaps just slightly, a bird-flu pandemic could kill more than 140 million people and put a halt to [U.S.]$4.4 trillion in world economic activity. Influenza pandemics generally come three times per century, and we’re overdue for our next. Any strain of influenza that humans contract, including H5N1, would scarcely exist if people had never domesticated poultry.

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