ethos toward a more sustainable living
i. bicycling & transit
Biking is a thrill and a half, it’s free (once you spend about $150-$200 on a good street bike (that’s like the cost of 1-2 parking tickets that you won’t be getting because you ride a bicycle)), you get to know your city, and it’s some good aerobic exercise. Leisure, transportation, and workout all at the same time. Just be sure that you:
1. Practice good bicycle safety. Ride far enough away from parked cars that no-one opens their door in front of you as you’re biking.
2. Maintain your bike. I recommend NOT ever riding a bike that has brake cables, and that has as few removable parts as possible, because in DTLA people will disconnect your brake cables to fuck with you, or steal any bike parts that aren’t locked down. A street bike with pedal-back brakes and minimal parts is a pretty good option. If your bike has removable wheels, dismantle it and lock all the pieces together with a U-lock.
Also, learn your local transit system and use it.
ii. sustainable clothing choices
A sewing kit is a good thing to have, you can find them them at basically every corner CVS, and it costs $3 to $7. If you’re sick of your t-shirt, you can sew it into a new thing. If your jeans are fraying, you can turn an old t-shirt into patches for them. Don’t throw stuff away because it’s getting old or shoddy. It’s usually possible to repair it or make it new. All you have to do to sew is stick a thread through a needle, and then weave it in and out of the fabric a few times until the two pieces stick together.
Knitting is not going to save the environment, but I enjoy it. You can also support wool artisans and double-task while on the bus.
As a general rule, it's best to buy sturdily-made, quality clothing from fabrics like denim, wool, leather (not vegan unfortunately, but sustainable for its durability), or other quality materials, then maintain your clothing rather than getting new, cheaply made, disposable things all the time. Besides, it looks and feels better.
If you wear neon or plastic (acrylic, synthetic) clothing, you're going to look like you just waded through a chemical waste pit. Who knows what kind of chemical dyes are in there, and you're probably going to hate it next week. Pick something genuinely beautiful, and which has a beauty that will last.
Factory farming is a sick, nauseating, sadistic industry that is exploitive and abusive to the Earth, to animals, and to the workers within the industry. It involves genetic mutilation, worker’s rights abuses, inhumane living conditions for animals, and eating meat not only supports this industry, but it takes a vastly more significant toll on the environment and on our natural resources than eating vegetarian / vegan. Veganism / vegetarianism doesn’t have to be a lifetime commitment; every day and every bit counts.
how to cook lentils
Just put them in water and cook for 15-20 minutes. They are cheap af, and provide you with protein, fiber, B-vitamins, and a good meal base to add vegetables to. They also have a nice flavor that is easily accentuated with buillon or Italian seasoning.
some good meals for being a healthy vegan / vegetarian on a budget
a good meal
Red lentils (has more iron than green and better texture), with vegetable buillon and kale or baby bok choi. Rinse about a cup of lentils, cook them for 17 minutes on medium heat with a teaspoon of vegetable buillon, add kale or baby bok choi about 5 minutes before the lentils are done.
a good breakfast
put English Breakfast tea and 1-minute oats with cinnamon, flaxseed, and chopped Fuji apples in a coffee mug. Pour hot water. Now you have tea & breakfast at the same time. Oatmeal is gluten free, and even if you’re not celiac I like to eat gluten free because it feels better.
a good snack
Baby carrots with almond butter, flax seed, and cranberries.
Nuts have protein, fiber, and calories, which makes them a good snack for sustained energy, and they require minimal packaging. Clif bars are also a good snack which provide a similar nutrition profile but are also vitamin-enriched. Complex juices can also efficiently provide a refreshing array of fresh phytonutrients.
Best avocado sandwich.
9-grain bread, two slices. 1 avocado, mashed. Drizzle of honey and salt. Best enjoyed with a cup of Numi toasted rice green tea.
Southern tempeh salad with honey mustard
Spring mix or kale. Few teaspoons of honey mustard or mustard dressing. Sliced tempeh. Some cheese if you are not full vegan. Enjoy with a couple of biscuits and possibly an IPA.
roast a skwash
buy a squash. cut it in half, and knife it about 7 times to let some air into the middle. pour honey and cinnamon on it. stick it on a metal rack in your oven until it’s soft (about 1 hr). Best served with lentils or yogurt. This is a good recipe if you work from home and have time to cook a 1 hour squash starting in the afternoon so it’s done by the time you finish work.
extra health things
Blueberries, matcha, flaxseed, kale, and almonds are all very beneficial to your health, and to your physical, mental, and spiritual awakeness. For the health of your stomach, tea can be better than lots of coffee all the time. Red wine in moderation cleanses and awakens the body. Garlic and ginger’s astringent properties are also cleansing and awakening. So is tumeric but I don’t really like it. Cutting apples into squares makes them more appetizing. Blueberries and kombucha are so good for you and should be enjoyed anytime you have about $5-7 extra bucks to spend on produce. Spinach is a good source of calcium, but if you’re vegetarian or vegan you should probably take a multivitamin and (if you are a woman (women are more prone to osteoporosis)), a calcium supplement. Don’t smoke, because it’s disgusting, and it’s the worst thing you can do for your health and your complexion. There are bits of fiberglass in cigarettes that will rip your lungs to bits, and it’s basically rat poison. Not to mention it leeches your bones. Gross!
Next time you are considering buying something for yourself that you don’t really and completely need, consider just not, and then giving the money to an environmental charity, such as the Sierra Club or the Nature Conservancy. You might not be a professional environmental advocate, but there are people out there who do that. Your contributions help them do the more labor-intensive and profession-specific work of trying to slow the destruction of our planet.
v. remember to spend time with your Earth Mother
Visit Nature whenever possible to remember why you love and need her. The Earth is fearsome beautiful powerful kind fertile generous soothing uplifting awe-inspiring and cooling to the mind.