Alicia Silverstone will teach you how to poo

She was great in those Aerosmith videos, cute in Clueless, terrible in 1997’s Batman and Robin, and insufferable as a vegan spokesthingy.

And now she can teach you how to poop.

Alicia Silverstone,
who has been a vegan for ten years, has a new book, The Kind Diet: A Simple Guide to Feeling Great, Losing Weight and Saving the Planet.

Some Alicia-isms:

"Remember, dairy was designed to make little baby calves turn into 400-pound cows, so that’s what it does to you. …

"Most people aren’t pooing. I know two girls in my life who are good friends, who were not pooing, but now they’re pooing ’cause I helped them. I taught them how to poo."

Food, sex and porn – new magazine, and how it’s done

Eat Me Daily reports that Food + Sex, a new magazine (bottom) with claims to be "The New Aesthetic of Food" featuring articles about human-incubated yogurt and "Tripping Balls on the Magic Penis" about eating psychedelic mushrooms, has debuted.

Sounds like the culmination of food porn.

For those who want more than titillation, The Enthusiast reports on how it’s done:

That mouth-watering Dominos pizza pull-apart, the tumbling ice cube dive-bombing into a perfect splash of soft drink — hell, even Whiskas looks pretty damn tasty when it’s artfully forked apart on TV commercials. Just who is responsible for these flirtatious parades of food pornography?

Welcome to the unspoken world of food stylists, a niche industry responsible for producing attractive food and drink footage of almost otherworldly beauty. This critical weapon is vital in convincing you to purchase that greasy burger, which otherwise looks like a flaccid afterthought by a distracted teenage fry cook.

Robert Carmack, an Australian food stylist of 20 years experience., says, there’s a simple code of conduct when it comes to advertising the product with some honesty. “We use the actual product when we’re selling that product. I’m free to use anything else when it’s an auxiliary. In other words, selling cereal means I must use the actual corn flakes, but the sugar and milk – or white-coloured glue – can be faked.” Mmm, we always did love the taste of Clag as kids!

Robert notes that many food stylists begin their life at gourmet publications, which usually involve proving your worth with mottled lighting and suspiciously realistic props. You’ll work your way up the (ahem) food chain, to photographing products like Big Macs against white Formica without any props at all, but still generating the same appeal to appetite.

In the age of Photoshop, however, everything is usually graphically manipulated after the final shot. “It tends to make stylists lazy when it comes to wiping out marks and drops, but it’s essential,” laments Robert.

European Union: Foodborne illness on the rise, e-cards could warn consumers

The New York Times reported yesterday that the Internet has made it much easier to connect for sexual hookups. In response, public health officials have been exploring ways to harness the online world for conducting safe-sex education and preventing the spread of sexually transmitted diseases by alerting people exposed to them.

The e-card, which allows the sender to select the disease involved and includes links to public health sites and services, is part of that strategy.

So when I read this morning that the European Food Safety Agency reported that food-poisoning cases are on the rise across the 27-nation bloc, I thought, why not e-cards to warn of foodborne illness.

e-cards: they’re not just for sexual hookups anymore.

Vegan strippers

In the midst of the U.S. presidential race and the on-going sage in Iraq, the New York Times devotes some major ink to vegan strippers.

Johnny Diablo of Portland, Ore., decided to open a business to combine vegans and strippers at his Casa Diablo Gentlemen’s Club, where soy protein replaces beef in the tacos and chimichangas and the dancers wear pleather, not leather.

However, since the strip club opened last month, Portland’s young feminists have been complaining  “all over the Internet,” according to the aptly named Diablo. “One of them came in here once. I could tell she had an attitude right when she came in. She was all hostile.”

Mr. Diablo, who hasn’t worn or eaten animal products in 24 years and is worried about cruelty to animals says he isn’t concerned with the “feminazis,” adding, “My sole purpose in this universe is to save every possible creature from pain and suffering."

The Times says that in Los Angeles, some frown at the scantily clad Vegan Vixens — a kind of animal-loving Pussycat Dolls — who perform songs like “Real Men Don’t Hunt” at fund-raisers for animal welfare groups.

And many vegans who want to publicize cruelty within the fur industry are nonetheless dismayed by the new “Ink, Not Mink” advertising campaign from peta2, the youth arm of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. It features members of the Internet-based pinup group the Suicide Girls, sporting little more than tattoos and body piercings.

Many vegans have long criticized PETA for using naked celebrities in its advertising campaigns and for staging stunts like naked protests.

As an aside, the Times says that Mr. Diablo put the club up for sale last week, although not because of the criticism. He may have underestimated the appeal of stripping to vegans, or of vegan cuisine to striptease fans; an earlier vegan restaurant he ran was poorly received.

The aside is the most important feature of this story.


As part of its annual cool ideas theme, the New York Times Magazine today included vegansexuality among its top-100 ideas.

Annie Potts, a researcher at the University of Canterbury and a director of the New Zealand Centre for Human-Animal Studies, found in a survey of 157 vegans and vegetarians (120 of them women) which included questions about "rejecting meat eaters as intimate partners" that some of the survey respondents volunteered their reluctance to kiss meat eaters.

A 49-year-old vegan woman from Auckland was quoted as saying,

"I couldn’t think of kissing lips that allow dead animal pieces to pass between them."

A 41-year-old Christchurch vegan woman said,

"Nonvegetarian bodies smell different to me. They are, after all, literally sustained through carcasses — the murdered flesh of others.”

A blog for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals noted that sleeping with only fellow vegans means forgoing the opportunity to turn carnivores into vegans by the most powerful recruiting tool available — sex.

Sex, chocolate and meat best for the brain

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that plenty of sex, dark chocolate and cold meats are the latest keys to boosting your brain power, according to a new book published in Britain

Terry Horne and Simon Wootton, authors of Teach Yourself: Train Your Brain, contend their recommendations are based on various chemical reactions within the body brought on by certain activities, and that those who want to stop their brain deteriorating should avoid watching TV soap operas, smoking cannabis and mixing with moaners.

While sex, dark chocolate and eating cold meats for breakfast top the list for the best ways to keep the brain fit, cuddling babies, cheating at homework, doing a business degree and reading out loud are also recommended.

"Mix with people who make you laugh, have a good sense of humour or who share the same interests as you and avoid people who whinge, whine and complain as people who are negative will make you depressed."

I’ll add in berries and beer.