Thursday, May 20, 2010

Saving money through home cooking

I'm re-reading the Shopaholic series. I love them. I love Sophie Kinsella's books. (I tried one of her real books - Madeline Wickham and it was boring.) I own them all - All the Shopaholic books, Can You Keep A Secret, Remember Me?, The Undomestic Goddess, and Twenties Girl. (That's the latest and it was in paperback at Kroger, *grab*)

Anyway, in the first book, Rebecca tries to cut back and save money by making curry at home instead of just ordering "takeaway" (I love how unapologetic the books are in their British-ness!) and it's a disaster.

And it got me thinking about a post at FWD from a while ago - The New York Times Tells You How To Eat, which details how the organic food movement is steeped in privilege - you need the money and you need the time. And the energy. Or the ability to stand and cook without the pain making you shaky and forgetful (did I start boiling that water?).

It got me thinking about a recent commercial for Red Baron frozen pizza and "pan pasta" which shows a bunch of pizza delivery people eating at someone's home, saying "Your mom makes the best pan pasta!" implying that it's better than theirs. The mom has her back to them, holding the Red Baron box.

You know why I order pizza? Because I don't want to cook. (Though I loved nuking these pizzas - forget the brand - and just picking away with my fingers, not even making slices.)

And it also made me think - frozen food? Shouldn't she buy the ingredients and make it herself, if she really cares about these people? I mean, who knows what evil chemicals are in Red Baron frozen pizza and "pan pasta"?!

The initial outlay for pizza ingredients will cost more or about the same as a ready made one, but they never factor in the time when it comes to "oh, just make it yourself so you don't get those nasty chemicals in your body!" My time is worth something. The only time mentioned is the time in the oven. I'm sure some cookbooks do mention the full prep time... but if it's too long, is it even worth it? Time is a form of expense as well.

Racialicious has a new post up about "sustainable food" and how it is seeped in more than just able-bodied and ... um.. time? privilege.
Sustainable Food and Privilege: Why is Green Always White (and Male and Upper-Class)

We'd all like to eat the "healthiest" "best" food, but you know what, it's not practical for most Americans. It's not practical for me and my family at all - the cost alone keeps us out of that club. Not to mention, I'm in pain. A lot. So maybe I could fiddle around and make something - but making food should be fun! - but I shouldn't be required to.

And I do worry about the environment, but I have to take my medication, I have to be alive. (Or I won't get to see Kites this weekend! Hrithik on the big screen! BYODB - Drool Bucket.)

So I take pride in what I do - putting a plastic bottle or paper in the recycling bin on campus. Or eating fruit. I refuse to feel guilty for what I could have done, I only focus on what I can do. I know, I'm supposed to be a tree-hugger, but I'm allergic to them and one of our trees has termites so I'll just gaze fondly at the trees right now.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

A little thought from a paper I never had to write.

See, I had to write this paper.

Only the pain was so bad I could barely think. And when it wasn't bad, I was sleepy or foggy. I was able to take my final - multiple choice - but not do the paper, which required abstract thinking. Normally, I can BS my way through something, but I couldn't even do that.

Luckily, I got above an 80 in the class without the paper, so I didn't have to do it. (It was my honor's course and to count as Honors, I had to get a B in the class. Honors classes count as my volunteer hours, and well, I can't do 75 hours before June 1st. I just can't do anything.)

Before that, I picked a topic (the Swiss minaret ban) and wrote out some topics while in class. (His powerpoints were always thorough and most of the test questions came straight from there, so I'd copy the powerpoint and then read. Or in this case, work on topics.)

The minaret ban in Switzerland is ridiculous and won't have much effect anyway, I think they had a rule about height in place. And the country only had 4. The imagery pissed a lot of people off - using minarets as guns piercing the Swiss flag, while a woman covered so only her eyes showed looked at you. Except that most of the Muslims in Switzerland are from Eastern Europe and don't wear the niqab or burka.

I also thought of the hijab ban in France and how assimilation is touted as the best way to be an immigrant - by not acting like one at all, forgetting your heritage. Here in the US, we screamed that forever, and now we wonder why the kids (always the kids) don't know about their heritage, oh boo hoo.

But I think that wearing a hijab and going to school or university or working or doing "French" things is a sign of good assimilation - look at me, I'm combining the old and new, a Muslimah can wear her hijab and still be French! Banning it is ridiculous.

Two fictional examples - Rayyan in the Canadian TV show Little Mosque on the Prairie wears the hijab. She's a doctor, she went to medical school. As it's a small town, she treats men and women. Very "Canadian," even with cloth on her head.

I just watched Kurbaan, and ugh, if you're Muslim, AVOID YAAR!!! Except for two women in the movie, they all wear hijabs and big dresses, very conservative. And basically say you can't wear the hijab and be a good Muslimah and work outside the home.

Contrast that with My Name is Khan - Rizvan's sister-in-law wears the hijab, works outside the home, and is more liberal than her husband (she attends Rizvan's wedding to a Hindu).

MNIK and LMOTP are more realistic - you don't have to abandon everything to become a "true" American or Canadian... or French.

Friday, May 07, 2010

I like today's Garfield.

That is all.

The comic:

I am totally Garfield, and Jon is any one of the innocent people forced to interact with me.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

Blogging Against Disablism Day 2010

Because of various issues related to my disability, I cannot sit down and write a post about Blogging Against Disablism Day or something in general, abstract. I cannot think properly due to pain and the side effects of medication.

So I'm throwing up a link to the site, which includes a round-up of various posts dealing with disabilities/chronic illnesses and how much society just SUCKS when dealing with them.

Blogging Against Disablism Day 2010