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  • I Wanna Love you like an Animal

    When I used to smoke a lot of pot, I spent an ample amount of time watching animal shows on the Discovery Channel. It became borderline obsessive. I went to the Science Museum, on more than one occasion, to buy a $300 DVD about creatures of the jungle. For many moons I would get disturbingly high, eat cereal, and look into the eyes of these beings of the wild.

    I fantasized about going into the open tundra and documenting yacks in their natural habitats. The feeling would pass after another bong hit. I’ve always had a lot of respect for people who spend their lives in nature, observing the magnificence of animals.

    As humans we often try to find the distinction between the animal kingdom and ourselves. There is a prevailing assumption that while a part of it, we are above it. We have a superiority complex, and tend to consider ourselves civilized in simply because we wipe our own ass and don’t eat vomit. I really don’t think we are.

    When I see a lion hunting a zebra in the Serengeti, it at first seems brutal as teeth tear into flesh, and this massive beast ingests its victim raw. I am like “whoa, that shit is intense lion… settle down because you have blood all over your furry chin and that is freaking me out.” Yet that is nothing compared to genocide. Or war! At least with animal violence the scale is more reasonable as opposed to taking out a couple thousand with a bomb. Animals are pretty damn low-key in contrast.

    We anthropomorphize ourselves when we portray people as the evolved species. By attributing human traits to our human identities we rationalize barbaric behavior – when in reality we are still ruthless animals.

    So on that note… I decided it was a good idea to bring The Munch to the Friendly Farm to pet some goats and pick up baby chicks and shit.
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    July 7, 2014 • 4 years old, Adventures, Musings • Views: 1833

  • March Against Monsanto

    On May 25th a mass protest is being organized against Monsanto.  I do not necessarily believe that protesting alone can change policy in this day and age, yet I do think that it is worth our time to do whatever we can to express our discontent with corporate plutocracy.  If anything it is at least an opportunity to better network with each other.

    We need to be as proactive as possible to an impact on how our food system works.  It is important to organize and educate each other, as well as deeply investigate the companies that are feeding us.  Right now, the best form of activism is being hyper aware of how you spend your money, and not supporting companies that are contaminating the land and their product.

    People are very impassioned when it comes to this issue, and there are many different ways to analyze information.  But no matter what your opinion on GMO’s and pesticides… whether you seem them as problematic or necessary… here are two ideas worth chewing on.

    Do you remember Russia… you know, the country we were at war with for WORLD POWER? Yeah, well they haven’t gone away – even if we did break up their empire.  Recently the president of Russia met with John Kerry and he is pretty pissed.

    “President Putin’s meeting this past week with US Secretary of State John Kerry reveal the Russian leaders “extreme outrage” over the Obama regimes continued protection of global seed and plant bio-genetic giants Syngenta and Monsanto in the face of a growing “bee apocalypse” that the Kremlin warns “will most certainly” lead to world war… At the center of this dispute between Russia and the US, this MNRE report says, is the “undisputed evidence” that a class of neuro-active insecticides chemically related to nicotine, known as neonicotinoids, are destroying our planets bee population, and which if left unchecked could destroy our world’s ability to grow enough food to feed its population.”

    I don’t know about you, but a world war sounds terrifying.  Especially one that is based on corporate greed and a refusal to adapt their business model.  I am not saying Monsanto can’t make money.  Make all the money you want Monsanto.  Have it all.  But maybe not murder the bees while you are doing it?

    I think we all know how important bees are to our food system, and the rest of the world seems pretty concerned that they are all dying.  And if all the bees die what are our options? To get children to pollinate the flowers with their tiny fingers?

    The other thing worth thinking about is that Monsanto impacts the entire world’s food system.  That is too much power for any one company to have over the most precious resource on the planet.  You could have more money than god, but if you are hungry and thirsty you are going to be in a bad mood, and eventually die.  Food is vital.  Our food system needs to be governed by a collective effort, not ruled by a dictatorship.

    There are many things we can argue about when it comes to geopolitical issues, but can’t we all agree that we don’t want to die in a world war, and that eating is important?

    I am inspired by the fact that Monsanto has already been removed from Austria, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Japan, Luxembourg, Madeira, New Zealand, Peru, South Australia, Russia, France, and Switzerland.  It gives me hope that we can do it here too.

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    May 24, 2013 • 2 years old, Current Events, Eating, Environmental Impact, Health, Musings • Views: 1602

  • Why Don’t You Take Your Bag and Shove It Up Your Ass!

    Hey world.  So this really awesome thing has been happening to me where my vagina bleeds every 2-weeks rather than 4.  It is amazing. I love it sooooooo much! Thanks nature! I don’t want to kick you in the twatt at all!

    In case it isn’t clear, I am in a really shit-tastic mood. So you can imagine how pumped I was to go grocery shopping with The Munch at the stupid organic store, only to realize that I didn’t bring my own eco-friendly bag.  I don’t know if you know this, but needing a bag at the hippy store is about as offensive as taking a shit in the middle of the aisle and then refusing to wipe.  When the cash register lady realized I had the audacity to admit I didn’t have my own $30 hemp bag, she acted as if I was single handedly responsible for destroying the planet with my selfish needs.

    Cashier: “Wait, so you didn’t bring your own bag?”

    Toni: “No I am sorry.  I didn’t plan to go shopping today, but then I realized I had time so….”

    Cashier: “So you don’t leave them in your car?”

    Toni: “Well, I guess the last time I used them, I left them in my house and forgot to bring them back to my car?”

    Cashier: “Well that is what you have to do next time.”

    Toni: Okay… sorry.”

    Cashier: “Yeah, well you should be.

    Yeah I get it lady!! I agree with you…. but I made a fucking mistake! And then of course, as The Munch and I were walking to the car, the stupid hippy paper bag broke and all my groceries fell into the dirt – because a pavement parking lot isn’t organic enough!  It made me feel like the cashier pissed in the bottom of the bag specifically to make it tear on me.  So then I had to shove dirty groceries in my car that was just cleaned as The Munch demanded to eat her muffin on the ride home.

    Toni: “Please Munch… the car just got cleaned… please don’t make crumbs with your muffin.”

    Munch: “But Mamma, it is already all dirty.  See!  See how the groceries are dirty?”

    Toni: “Yeah, I see Munch.  Thanks for pointing that out.”

    The only thing that made any sense to my day was that I would have at least an hour to make voodoo dolls and stab them while The Munch napped.  But of course she didn’t nap because she “wasn’t sleepy” and wanted to show me something downstairs.   That something being a half eaten lollipop she wanted to finish.

    Munch: “I don’t want to sleep.  I want to go down stairs with you.”

    Toni: “Munch, you need to go to sleep.”

    Munch: “Can I lay on your tummy? I want to lay on your tummy.”

    Toni: “Fine…”

    Munch: “Mamma tell me a story.”

    Toni: “Once upon a time there was a little girl named Adelia and her Mamma really wanted her to go to sleep.”

    Toni: “Ummmm yeah… tell me another story instead.”

    LOVE YOU! I am going to go find someone to karate chop.

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  • Sometimes Being Eco is Annoying

    I really don’t want to live in a trashcan of a world, but being eco can be annoying.  To exclusively support organic fair trade local products that you also happened to grow in your back yard, had harvested by virgins, and processed by leprechauns is a fucking challenge.  The other day I thought I would buy some organic cotton t-shirts for The Munch, and one shirt was $40?! When I saw the price I threw up in my hand and then had to eat it because my dinner was from the organic store and my tofu kale wheat-free sandwich was not cheap.

    I know the responsibility is on me to be the change I want to see in the world, but I already changed my underwear today -isn’t that enough?  It is a lot of pressure for me to always make the right decision when there is so much crappy crap out there that is way crappy, but easier to get.  My main question is, why is there so much temptation to poison ourselves with toxic shit?  We have so much access to such a vast variety of products, but the majority of them are actually semi dangerous.  Major corporations are exposing us to some sort of poison, subjecting employees to horrific working conditions, and sometimes secretly feeding people rats they think is lamb.

    So there is plenty of incentive to be conscious consumer.  In fact I consider myself to be a PROsumer with all the positive shit I buy.  Get it? PROsumer rather than CONsumer? Am I lyrical genius or what?  But sometimes I want to be just like ahhh fuck it! I mean I got The Munch this hippy sunscreen because I read that sunscreen, although may protect you from getting skin cancer from the sun, actually just gives you another kind of cancer.  So I slapped the eco stuff on her, and it worked in the sense that she didn’t get burned, but it wouldn’t absorb into her skin.  She was walking around looking like Casper the Ghost the entire day.  I mean that is fine for a kid and all, but there is no way as a self-respecting woman, I can go out in public like a member of the Adams Family.

    Of course when we are talking about green products, food is the one I am most committed to.  But sometimes I get sick of being healthy.  Over the summer I am part of CSA (community supported agriculture) and get all my organic vegetables delivered to me.  They are grown in the most fertile soil and picked by a bearded farming angel.  Yet by time September rolls around all I want is to eat cheeseburgers and doughnuts.  I get so sick of vegetables I want to throw them against the wall, and then waterboard them.

    I know I should probably find a balance and feel peace knowing I am doing what I can and all that…. But what the fuck world?  Why can’t eco shit just be the only shit we can buy so I wouldn’t have to compare it to the other shit?

    (Here I am…. saving a spider and bringing her outside so I don’t murder her…. because I am environmentally responsible!)

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  • Parents Can Be Really Annoying

    Parents can be really annoying.  I know everyone has their own style, and who am I to judge really, but sometimes I do anyway.  And do you want to know why? Because I fucking can that is why.

    Yesterday The Munch and I went to the beach because she wanted to go swimming.  Forget that the lake was ice 3 weeks ago.  The Munch has no concept of time and as far as she is concerned its summer.  I figured she doesn’t have balls that are going to get all small and silly looking, so why not swim in 50-degree water.

    At first we are the only ones there. Her little naked body skittering across the sand like a crab.  It was a peaceful scene.  I felt like the animals weren’t disturbed by our presence.  The trees embraced us with their shadows.  We weren’t interfering with the Zen of place.

    Then this father came with his two sons.  At first I thought it might be fun and The Munch would have others to frolic with, but the dad instantly got really annoying.  He would not stop barking orders at his kids.

    “Josiah! Josiah! Don’t climb up there.  That’s not yours.  Come down and get in the water.  No. Noah! Don’t go over to those swings.  We have crap like that at home.  Get in the water.  We came here to play in the water.  Josiah!! Josiah!! GET OUT OF THAT BOAT! Don’t sit in there.  Noah quit it! Don’t go on those docks. Josiah, stop poking at the sand like that.  NOAH! I told you to get in the water.  We have a slide at home.”

    All the meanwhile he was on his phone emailing! Now I am all for entertaining yourself with your phone when your kids are boring you, but then pay attention to your dumb phone.  If I am on my phone looking at Facebook do you think I give a flying fuck in a rolling doughnut if my kid is sitting in a docked boat that safely nestled on the sand and is pretending to drive it?  Not at all.  As long as you are not bothering me, I am not going to bother you.

    Of course I didn’t know these kids, and maybe they are total terrors and extremely destructive – but there really wasn’t much you could have damaged.  It’s not like they were going to tear down the swing set with their bare hands and crap in the sandbox.  They were just having fun.  I really didn’t get why the dad had to micromanage and dictate their every move.  Rather than spending all that energy yelling at them how to play, he could have just played with them.  Or hung out on his phone and be preoccupied with that.  I would have so much rather heard the noises of children enjoying their time then some 40 year old man screaming at them.

    And you know what? The kids, although rambunctious were perfectly nice humans.  The older one even came up to talk to The Munch and me:

    Josiah: “Did you know I was at my uncle’s house today?”

    Toni: “No actually I didn’t.

    Josiah: “Yeah. My cousins were there.  I have one cousin Mark who is 11, and he has brown hair.  Then another cousin Kevin ,who is 8 and his pants got really dirty.  Then Lydia who is 9 but I don’t really talk to her that much. I am 5.  Then my dad came and got us.  But I am pretty sure my uncle stayed at home.  Because he didn’t come with us.  I actually don’t know where he is now.”

    Then the dad came up and said, “Watch out.  He can talk your ear off all day.” And I was like … ummmmm he is sitting right there dude.  He can hear you.  Fine this wasn’t the best story I ever heard, but now I know all about this kid’s uncle and cousins so there wasn’t nothing gained.  The dad didn’t have to put down his kid because his son chatting to me embarrassed him.  He should have been embarrassed by his behavior of being a bossy prick for the past half hour.  I would talk to Josiah all day about dirty pants brown hair, Mark, Kevin, Lydia, and this absentee uncle if it meant you would shut the fuck up dad.

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    May 8, 2013 • 2 years old, Adventures, Behavior, Disciplining, Musings, Parenting • Views: 1803

  • Hey, That’s MY Message!

    Information is social currency.  When I send someone a link, or post something illuminating, it contributes to my public value. The Internet allows us not only to spread information but also to become associated with it. It’s almost as if we can brand ourselves alongside the messages we are spreading.

    So last week when everyone was talking about the Monsanto Protection Act I was really involved in the discussion. This is an issue that I am very passionate about and have been researching for over a decade. I wanted to be an active part of the discussion – to help spread the message of why I think Monsanto should be a major part of the public dialogue and we should all have a clear understanding of not only its power but its product.  Our food system.

    I had first learned about Monsanto and genetically engineered food over 10 years ago when I was in college. Before understanding the science behind food, the only thing that concerned me was calories and fat grams. Then one fateful night, while smoking joints with my friend Marisa she told me,

    “You know, the reason why Americans are so overweight and unhealthy is because of partially hydrogenated oil.”

    “Wait, what is that?”

    “They, like, add hydrogen to the oil, so it is fluffier and takes up more space. They can then use less of it and save money, but the human body can’t digest it. That is what makes you fat.”

    “Why do they do that? How do they do that? And who is they?”

    “You know… they!  I don’t know Toni, I am not a scientist… look it up. But I am telling you. That is why Europeans are all skinny, because they don’t put crap in their food.”

    This really blew my mind into a thousand pieces. Before that moment, I had never considered that highly processed food wasn’t actually food. And I did not want to get fat because I was unconsciously consuming a science experiment. Forget that we were scarfing down ice cream at that moment…. We were high – remember? I am perfectly okay getting pudgy eating delicious treats, but there is no way hydrogenated oils were going to give me a muffin top.

    After that fateful conversation I started looking at ingredients rather than the silly numbers on a side of a box of processed food. Initially my rejection of GMO food may have been for my own vanity or health, but the more I learned, the more committed I became.

    I then read The Age of Access by Jeremy Rifkin, and started to comprehend the environmental consequences of genetic engineering. The massive destruction of natural resources, the farmers that it oppressed, the annihilation of biodiversity, the subsidies that forced an economic stranglehold on the entire food industry, and – perhaps most demented – gene patenting. Rifkin hypothesized that the future held forth a new economy based on owning and patenting genes. The thought of corporations and life-science companies owning the building blocks of life and leasing out the rights to it seemed like an apocalyptic nightmare.

    After understanding the full scope, I became outraged. I was so committed to this cause that I spent three years of my life trying to open an organic fast food restaurant so more people could have access to clean food, but in a format they were accustomed to. I wanted to bring organic food to as many people as I could. Even though my vision did not work out the way I wanted it to – I didn’t get to open my restaurant – I could still do my best to continue promoting the idea.

    So when everyone was talking about Monsanto last week, I made a little cartoon with The Munch and me and posted it on Facebook. It started making the rounds and people started sharing it. But I didn’t put my logo on the picture. So then I started seeing other friends post the pic, and other groups, but it wasn’t associated to me any more. I mean it was my picture, but it didn’t link back to me in any way.

    At first I was so mad at myself.  I felt like a missed a major opportunity to drive traffic back to me! So more people would see me… like me… care about me! I wanted to be the giver of the information!  Me! Me! Me! The more I saw it floating around, and not attached to me, the more I freaked out.  Of course the original picture I shared had 1,700 shares thanks to my friend reposting it on her popular page… but that had a spelling mistake in it because that is my fucking karma! (Hey! I know I am using the concept of Karma wrong here, but I am being emphatic so forgive me).

    Okay… pause….

    I found this to be a really interesting example of how the ego gets tied into things that are essentially ego-less. In reality, I should have been happy that people thought the image had value and wanted to share it. That it took a small part in spreading awareness about an issue that I cared about. But as much as my rational mind knew this, my emotional-self wanted to be credited with that message. WHICH IS ABSURD!!  It was beyond ironic that I had the audacity to feel used by people sharing my picture without crediting me, when the message could easily say I was using it to promote myself.

    That is the thing about activism. It has to come from a pure place, and not from wanting to somehow have ownership over the message. Because to feel personal attachment to the information you are trying to spread, is the very same paradigm that we are trying to change with activism.

    “Mamma you are being silly!

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