Violent Facebook Ads and Possible Vegan Craziness

Facebook is deeply stupid.

Here I said it.

(Raise your hand if you agree)

It’s been years and it still doesn’t get what target audience I am –not– a part of.

Today I hid an ad for the billionth time and I realized something.

Either Facebook is presenting violent ads all the time or I’m plain crazy.

Veganism does that to some people. At least that’s what I heard.

A raw chicken appeared in my feed. It was some cooking ad for a brand I won’t name.

I did something that most people would consider stupid.

I checked “inappropriate” for the reason I didn’t want to see it. Facebook wanted to know why it was inappropriate.

I was faced with the choice of either “It’s illegal or violent” or the good old “I disagree with it”.

In a moment of doubt I turned to my dear friend; the dictionary.

What is violent?

Violent is an adjective describing something involving physical force intended to hurt, damage, or kill someone or something.

Yes, that chicken’s death was violent. It was meant to be killed and even though it’s not considered a someone, it’s most definitely some thing.

Why then did I feel so crazy for reporting the truth?

Speaking of definitions, what is craziness?

Craziness is a noun referring to a state of being mentally deranged, demented or unusual.

I know that the sight of raw meat is not normally associated with violence.

It’s not common to define such images as violent.

Maybe I’m the crazy one.

There’s a loophole that I don’t know about probably.

One in which these animals are not a thing even though they technically are.

What do you think?

Is Facebook presenting violent ads?

Am I crazy?

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

 

p.s It’s actually rabbits in the picture above

*Photo Credit: David Blackwell flickr Creative Commons 2.0

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Believing In Magic

This is the best time of the year. The only point in time where we make it our duty to encourage children to suspend their disbelief.

While it’s true that most kids have an imaginary friend and like to partake in pretend play, they are a lot more rational than we give them credit for.

When in doubt or uncertainty, they turn to the person who they know to be the most knowledgeable and critical about the world. Grown-ups.

Honestly, it’s not a laughable strategy. We look up to doctors, lawyers, professionals of all types.

I was made to believe in all sorts of magical things as a child. Santa Claus was not the most prominent figure by any means.

I was.

I made a potion when I was 6 that changed my life forever. It was a sub par version of the green slimy bubbling mixture from a real witch’s cauldron. For one, I had no grimoire. Secondly, the only green came from my dad’s mint flavored toothpaste.

I knew deep down that my bowl of water with bits of condiments and personal hygiene products was a total sham.

However my dad disappeared in the shower after tasting it. My mom freaked out. He came back and told me he was sent back to his previous life.

I had powers.

I truly believed I did for years.

I couldn’t explain why my parents would go out of their way to create such a charade for no reason that I could see.

It was easier to see myself as a witch then to fathom the idea that my parents could invent such a lie.

I continued on in my belief in magical things for a while after I found out the truth about Santa. He wasn’t real but I sure was.

It all came crashing down on me a few Christmases later.

I was in my bedroom when my mom stormed in.

I was 10 years old if I remember correctly.

She opened my closet and proceeded to throw all my unorganized mess all over the place.

Clothes and toys were flying and I was being put on the stake.

My own witch trial.

I was the mean old witch that ruined Christmas forever in our house.

Except I wasn’t.

My younger brother found Santa’s gift stash unbeknownst to me.

I was being accused of luring him into the secret hiding place.

I was indignant of being wrongly held responsible but mostly I was stunned.

Why was it so bad if nobody in our house believed in Santa anymore?

I didn’t understand.

However I saw clearly for the first time how important it was to my mom that we held on to believing in magic.

I had no witchy powers at all except those she wanted me to believe I had.

The following year I invented that Cupid came every year for Valentine’s Day and hid gifts with clues all over people’s houses. I made my brother believe in it with a surprising facility.

The Valentine’s Day treasure Hunt was my mom’s new way of creating magic for us.

Maybe I didn’t have powers but I helped create magic for years.

Maybe this is what the large scale deceiving is about; finding the bit of magic in ourselves and judging it important enough to spread it.

*Photo Credit: Javcon117* flickr Creative Commons 2.0

Don’t Step Down From Your Fortress

Montreal is a total winter wonderland right now.

Well it’s more of a “I wonder where the land is” and “I wonder how to step over this mountain of snow to get on the bus”.

Either way it’s not fun. Except for kids.

They find entertainment everywhere, don’t they?

Even in the coldest of places.

I wasn’t a big fan of snow even as a kid but I did enjoy it a lot more than I do today.

Why?

Forts.

I’ve always liked building fort and fortresses. Inside and outside. That’s not really unusual.

I think most people can relate to that.

However, once they were nice and tall and people started coveting them, I gave them up.

I surrendered my fortresses at any slight provocation.

I liked building a space for myself but I didn’t want the responsibility of protecting it against intruders.

 We may have forged the best defenses around our fortress but if we’re not willing to stand by while we’re being attacked, they’re useless.

Even though I haven’t been constructing fortresses out of snow lately, I’ve realized that I am still attempting to make one.

I like to stay alone in my own fort, stating all sorts of projects, trying to build myself up.

And you guessed it, I want to give it up anytime something comes up.

Today I want to tell myself, and that kid I was back then:

Don’t ever step down from your fortress again!

 

*Photo Credit: Eden, Janine and Jim flickr Creative Commons 2.0

Glass Half-Full or Half-Empty?

I ate veal once in my life.

It was at this fancy restaurant that I could only afford with the help of a site like Groupon. You know the type.

I don’t remember much of that meal except that I filled myself up with the far too delicious bread rolls and butter.

I don’t remember feeling anything besides being stuffed and happy.

That’s a sad, hard truth that I like to remind myself of from time to time.

Humans, we do things that are mind-boggling.

Both good and bad.

I always wonder which way it goes however.

Is it more good than bad?

More bad than good?

Glass half-full or half-empty, it doesn’t matter.

There’s still a glass on far too many tables.

*Photo Credit: Martin Abegglen flickr Creative Commons 2.0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vegan Overkill

As a vegan, I do a lot of vegan things. Being vegan is an intricate part of my life.

Don’t believe me?

Let me take you through a typical day in the life of a vegan.

Case in point: Me.

I like to wake up in the morning and drink my vegan corn tea. Then I lit some vegan incense and eat some vegan oatmeal with vegan strawberries on top. Of course, I have to have some vegan maple syrup too.

I work on writing some vegan articles for this great vegan website called theflamingvegan.com. (Vegans can go vote for my vegan articles by the way!). I cover topics ranging from booking a vegan cruise, finding a vegan winter coat, making a vegan soup, great vegan restaurants expanding and so much more vegan things!

I take a break at some point to eat some vegan chickpea curry with vegan basmati rice and vegan broccoli or other vegan deliciousness that I cook in my vegan kitchen. Of course my fridge is totally vegan! I’m a blessed vegan to not have to share it. (the joy of living alone)

At some point during the day I talk with my vegan boyfriend about the vegan food we ate and other vegan things. Blessed vegan, I know.

Then it gets around the time for me to go to work.

I step outside in the non-vegan world. I greet the non-vegan driver of the non-vegan bus I ride. I go pick-up the non-vegan kids at their non-vegan daycare and they eat their non-vegan snacks on the way home. I serve them their non-vegan dinner and give them a bath. I wash their hair with non-vegan shampoo. They eat their non-vegan dessert.

I leave eventually and walk on the non-vegan roads to get home. I might stop at the non-vegan grocery store on my way.

While I’m there I make sure I read the label on everything I might buy.

Vegan or non-vegan?

I go back in my safe vegan home.

I eat vegan salt and vinegar chips before I go to bed and I write a vegan post, much like this one.

Can you say vegan overkill?


  • This post was written in good humor so take what you want from it. I’m just a small vegan living in a big non-vegan world. The word vegan can seem like overkill sometimes but it makes a lot of us feel safer.

Can you relate at all?

What do you think of the use of the word vegan everywhere? Do you think it’s too much?

I don’t mean in this article but in general. 

I’d love to read your thoughts in the comments.

 

*Picture Credit: Miyalys flickr Creative Commons 2.0

 

 

Sleeping with the Enemy

I ended a 6 year relationship over a disagreement about hydration.

It sounds silly but it’s a true story.

He didn’t believe it was healthy to drink more than 1L a day.

It was then and there that I decided I couldn’t love him anymore.

Obviously we had other underlying issues but this was (literally) the drop that made the glass overflow.

Besides being dehydrated, he was also, to my dismay, a self-confessed carnivore.

Now, I’m not saying partners with opposing views can’t have lasting relationships but it’s the exception rather than the norm.

If infidelity, growing apart or simply falling out of love hasn’t teared your relationship apart, chances are the discovery of veganism will.

It did for me.

The beginning of the end was when he asked me to order a meat lover’s pizza for him.

It went downhill from there.

From making him eat a vegan burger deceptively (he still doesn’t know it wasn’t meat to this day) to that final fight over water, it did feel like I was sleeping with the enemy.

Relationships between vegans and non-vegans can and do work but they are controversial for a reason.

I know, I will never tone down again the part of me that I want my partner to understand the most.

In the end, it’s what it comes down to.

You have to ask yourself if censoring a part of you is worth any relationship. Even if you’re blatantly militant, is watching your partner disregard everything that you know is right in your heart, ever going to bring you closer?

What has been your experience dating as a vegan?

Or maybe you’re the one dating a vegan?

I’d love to read your thoughts in the comments.

 

*Photo Credit: Michael flickr Creative Commons 2.0

The Vegan Conundrum

I didn’t know what a vegan was before I turned 18. I knew about vegetarianism but I had never met anyone belonging to the “cult”.

My first encounter with a vegan “ad”was a Peta leaflet having something to do with the treatment of chickens. I honestly don’t remember as I skimmed and discarded the information as fast as I got it.

It was merely a drop of water getting lost in the sea of constant approval of my meat eating ways. There is a stream going to our brains everyday. It’s made up of all the input we get from our environment during the day. Society tells us what is acceptable, expected of us, what we should focus on and what we should consume.

Nobody ever said a word to me but I heard what was going on around me. All my life I never contemplated what was on my plate. It’s near impossible to do so when there’s constant buzzing in your ears about all the reasons you shouldn’t.

Navigating the world as a vegan is very much like being on a boat taking water while going upstream. Either you sink or learn to swim.

The point is, no one likes swimming against the current. Nobody will unless they really have to.

Obviously, people will always avoid finding out that they might indeed have to.

What is the big “vegan conundrum” then you might ask?

The question that is bound to present itself at some point for any vegan while they are going against the mass is this:

How best to convince people to come with me upstream?

Either you’re that type of vegan who pretends not to care “live and let live” or you try to pull others against the current with you, using all your might.

On one hand, letting others watch you swim in silence may one day inspire them to go with you. That’s a long shot though. The current will still always be in the other direction.

You can be screaming, kicking your feet in the water, splashing them, pulling them away from the steady stream they’re on. Chances are they’ll be kicking and screaming too.

What’s a vegan to do?

I still haven’t found the answer to this vegan conundrum.

What is your view on this?

I’d love to read your thoughts in the comments!

 

*Picture Credit: Michael Coghlan Creative Commons 2.0