Sunday, May 6, 2007

Day 1

Today isn’t going so well for my first day of raw summer. First of all, I realized I can’t do this cold tofurkey. I have a lot of food in the house that is canned or cereal and stuff that I don’t want to waste. So I figured it might be better for my body anyway if I gradually go more and more into raw only. So, this morning I had a banana and 2 packets of Nutrition for Women instant oatmeal. Then I went and helped Chris move the rest of his stuff that we couldn’t finish moving last night. He saw what I was writing last night and decided to do raw summer with me. At least the getting-rid-of-stuff part. I don’t think he knows about the food cleansing part. He said a few times today again how he needs to get rid of all of his stuff. He said he wants to only have enough stuff to live out of his backpack. I found that funny because just a few days ago I wanted to go through his massive selection of T-shirts and get rid of a few and he refused me. He later said that he just didn’t want to take the time to go through the stuff.

I found a priceless quotation by Carol J. Adams in her book Neither Man Nor Beast about the stuff you just have to do: “The moment when I realized that maintenance must be valued as productive was while I was cooking vegetarian food; thus I was doing what we generally consider to be maintenance. The problem is to escape from maintenance to produce these or any ‘productive’ thoughts. Seeing maintenance as productive is the other side of recognizing the ethical importance of the consequences of our actions.” I often think of her words when I am doing chores or errands or things I don’t want to do or I feel don’t make a difference, but must be done anyway. Another thing I kind of feel bad for doing on the first day of raw summer is getting a couch. I do give myself some credit however since it was free and would have gone to the landfill if I hadn’t saved it. It was by the dumpsters in the dorm parking lot. It is a small couch and very comfy which makes me feel better too. I also decided that since I got it, I am going to give my folding chair to my mom for her classroom. I feel that is a good trade. Today I am going to take all of the clothes and things that I sorted out during move-in to the thrift store as well as a couch Chris decided to part with (and also didn’t have room for).

I also decided to make a few rules for my minimalism. I think books should be excluded. Not all books of course. I have a pile to trade on a paperback book swap website. I think books supply knowledge that can help me in this endeavor as well as through life. I will, however, get rid of books that I’ll never use or which are not good references. I think a good way for me to get rid of things with sentimental value might be to give them as gifts to people I know will appreciate them.

For lunch I had some left over Japanese food: rice noodles with steamed veggies. Not raw, but vegetables nonetheless. I really need to go to the store and get some fruit. I start school tomorrow already, unfortunately. I guess that is the price of graduating in four years these days. At least it will be new classes. I am taking anatomy and physiology one and two at the same time this summer as well as microeconomics. I digress.

For dinner I had some dark vegan chocolate (2 pieces) and the rest of my Japanese and more oatmeal (2 packets. I am trying to use it up.) I just ordered two books off of paperback swap. One is called Communion: The Female Search for Love by bell hooks. I like this part of the description: “as feminists of hooks' generation reach midlife, they may find it easier to rethink these terms of engagement, to risk changing things. The first step, she says, is self-love accepting one's body and soul just the way it is. Without such acceptance, women cannot escape the domination-submission dynamic. Even then, in this patriarchal universe finding love with another person may require some creativity. Hooks explores romantic friendships, lesbian loves and "circles of love" (which allow for committed bonds that extend beyond one partnership). A life with no coupling, but "a more authentic relationship between self and world," may also be satisfying. Twenty-something women who've embraced the highly problematic "bitch persona" Elizabeth Wurtzel has written of may sneer at hooks's affirming style, but older women, particularly those raising girls themselves, will find much to ponder here." Although I am only 20 I feel like I am not of the “bitch persona” and I enjoy reading about older women, not the typical chick flick novels. Older women are so much more interesting and deep and comfy. Like SARK.

The other book I ordered I have been meaning to read for a while. I have had it checked out from the library but now I will own it. The Sexual Politics of Meat: A Feminist-Vegetarian Critical Theory by Carol J. Adams. I read her other book Neither Man Nor Beast and it was very good and informative. I liked how she wouldn’t use the term “meat” because it was a “mass term” meaning that it ignored the individuality of the animals and didn’t recognize the amount or source of the “meat.” So instead she would say "dead flesh" or call it the "corpse production industry". It was full of sarcasm and wit. She used it at every opportunity so one could tell that she was stubborn and strong-willed. Reading time and then bed.

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