Sunday, January 31, 2016

Another post about voting

One theme clear in many of my blog posts is to encourage activists of every kind to engage in politics and to vote.

This is just as important as it every has been.

With primaries and caucuses getting close, each one of us has an opportunity to create change in our own way, to voice our opinion and to be the voice of those who do not have a voice.

Please vote.

Please caucus.

Wear one of your favorite activist t-shirts that promote a cause near and dear to you.

Bring a friend.

There is so much going on in our world and I believe that the more of us who actually give a shit participate and vote, we have a good chance of making things better.

Just a pipe dream? I don't think so.

Thanks for reading.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

A 20-year vegan

In simple terms, if one becomes vegan and doesn't die, eventually they will be vegan for 20 years.

That's the case in my life. January of 2016 marks 20 years of being vegan. I have honestly never looked back and never considered not being vegan since that first day.

I became vegan because I no longer wanted to be part of animal cruelty. I no longer wanted to think that my taste buds trumped the life of an animal who wanted to live.

A lot has changed. There are more vegans. A ton more vegan products. More people today get that animals are tortured and live in fear just to become someones meal.

Many restaurants at least have a vegan option.

Activism has grown too. I was involved in human rights work when I became vegan and now am happily also part of the animal rights movement.

Like many of us, I have passions in other areas, specifically trans equality, liberation, homelessness and poverty.

Being vegan is easy. Becoming vegan is easy. There is so much I don't know so I have a bunch of web links on the main page of my blog which can be helpful for those wanting to learn more.

Newly vegan? Considering veganism? Go easy on yourself. Learn all about food and what foods bring what nutrients to your body. Be kind to yourself and others. Life, veganism and activism are all paths and we each walk them a little differently.

Thank you for reading!

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Gym issues

Leaving the gym recently, I started telling Mike about all of the issues I have with not only our new gym, but with many people who go there.

I should say that I am one of the most positive people I know, and that I have always tried to write positive blog posts. After my most recent gym visit I just had to vent.

I love being back in the gym and working out. I feel better physically and mentally.

But come on!

Please put the weights away. There is no one following you around the gym cleaning up after you. It's just common courtesy.

With limited equipment, if you do not want to share or let someone work in, please purchase your own equipment and stay home.

For goodness sake, don't unload with your "bro" in the sauna about what a bitch your girlfriend, wife or one night stand is. I honestly don't think anyone cares to hear it.

Yes, you are a gym god. You have the best body ever, in the whole world. So what.

Would it kill you to be kind to other folks in the gym?

For all of you who go to the gym, do your thing without disrespecting others or maybe even being nice to someone, thank you.

Not all of us know everything there is to know. Not all of us are there to look good. I want to be as fit as possible, and going to the gym makes that a lot easier for me.

Thanks so much for reading.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Loving Los Angeles

A CicLAvia bike ride in downtown LA.

It has been six months since we left Denver and moved to Los Angeles and we are loving it.

A big move like that isn't easy. If you have ever packed up from one part of the country and moved to another, you get it. We took risks in leaving a wonderful home, a great family of friends and awesome jobs. Yet the southern California life called us. We wanted to be in a warmer climate and wanted to be able to get the beach more than once a year.

And so we have.

I wouldn't say we are fully settled in, but we are close. We still need a maps app to get around sometimes. Home is wonderful and we spend our free time either beaching it or exploring the vastness of LA. The longer we are here the smaller Denver seems as a city. LA is just so, big!

Some of our favorites so far:

Hiking at Griffith Park
Brunch at Sun Cafe
Bike Ride on the San Gabriel bike trail
Surfing at Zuma Beach
Veggie Grill
Beach time at Zuma Beach
Walking around the Rose Bowl flea market in Pasadena
Listening to a conversation in Chinese on one side and in Spanish on the other while in the sauna at our gym
A CicLAvia ride downtown when streets are closed for thousands to ride around town

We can also confirm that LA is the vegan capital of the world. Yesterday we had lunch at Ramen Hood in downtown, a 100% ramen restaurant in the middle of LA's famous Grand Central Market and then we went to Hollywood and spent an hour tasting vegan cheeses at Vromage.

Yes, all of this costs money. It can get expensive. We have found that we spend about the same amount of money on food as we did in Denver. There is an unending variety of farmer's markets where we can shop. Our favorite so far is the South Pasadena market. With the huge amount of diversity here, staples like beans, rice, fruits and veggies are actually cheaper here.

Yes, there are the naysayers. Many do not like LA. I'm sure you've heard of LA traffic. We've experienced it. Not too bad. It requires planning and yes, patience. One cannot be driving at a fast speed and expect to go that fast for their entire journey. My trip to work is about 30 minutes in the morning and can be just over an hour on my way home.

Our exploring will continue. A new hiking trail, a beach we haven't been to yet. Another gorgeous view. A coffee house filled with folks not speaking English. A fruit we have never heard of before.

I'll keep you posted. Meanwhile, if you're going to be in LA keep an eye out for our new "When in LA" page that I am working on for the blog.

Thanks for reading!

Friday, January 8, 2016

Now is not the time

Now is not the time to stay silent.

We are all swamped: family, work, activism and simply doing everything we need to do as part of our lives.

And we must not be silent.

Domestic terrorism, an incredibly negative US Presidential campaign, welfare ranchers taking over bird sanctuaries, crazy poverty levels, demonizing of anyone who is different and a continuing list of people killed by those paid to protect us. These issues don't even include our every day personal issues, mine being immigration and animal rights.

Yes, it can all be overwhelming. Yet silence will not bring us any closer to the world we are working towards. Our silence allows others to take the spotlight and in many cases promote causes we disagree with.

Taking action doesn't take a lot of time. Find an article from a respected news source that is about something important to you and share it on social media. Retweet a fact you see on Twitter that supports what you believe. Support an action alert on an organization's website who work you support. Make a small donation.

Speak out. 

This list could be much longer. You get the idea.

Since creating The Gay Vegans I have been blown away by how many of those who read this blog care so much about so many issues. Together we can totally make change.

Thank you so much for reading!