Friday, May 23


OK, let's not get too excited, here. After all, this is the woman who said Howard Lyman "has just stopped me from eating another burger!" some 12 years ago, and that one didn't seem to stick.

This time, however, she's not making an absolute, permanent promise, and if anything, that's probably a good model for a lot of people. Oprah is going vegan for 21 days, and in the process exposing millions of people to the specifics of this non-mainstream lifestyle. So that right there is a positive. Whatever she decides on day 22 is gravy, so to speak. Knowing that she has the option to revert once she gets though this period may help to stick to it during that period - then there's always a chance she'll return to it afterward - who knows, maybe permanently.

UPDATE 5/28:
If nothing else, it's good to see a woman whose every word so many hang on putting out verbiage like "Wow, wow, wow! I never imagined meatless meals could be so satisfying" and I'm ever more surprised at how I don't miss anything and feel so satisfied at every meal." Let's hope she doesn't sour on this later and start channeling Rick Berman or something.

Sunday, May 18


Here's an interesting Friday recall to add to the massive pile: JSM Meats is recalling beef products for E.Coli. The contaminated beef went to stores in 11 states. It's a Class I (High-Risk) recall.

Now, how much meat is being recalled? The USDA says they don't know. It's an "undetermined" amount.

Excuse me? They don't know? Why not? If I were cynical and jaded through years of following the USDA's machinations to minimize and eliminate the PR damage the meat industry causes itself, I might suspect that there's a large amount of meat involved and though the agency does in fact know how much, they're not saying in the initial story. Why? Because they can let this "undetermined" story work through the news cycle, then "discover" the amount to announce halfway through the next, so it comes only as an added-detail to an existing, "old" news story. It's similar to the ploy, er, sorry, coincidental pattern of behavior, where a recall is announced for a small amount of beef, then expanded a few days later to a huge amount.

Of course, that's only if I were so cynical and jaded as to believe that. But being my own sweet, naive, cockeyed-optimist self, I know the real reason the USDA has no idea how much meat is involved in a recall they're overseeing is that they're simply a bunch of incompetent buffoons. Right?