A funny thing happened on the way to this Monday… Which is greener, a meat or a veggie burger? Theory on politically-influenced baby names

-o- Happy day after Mother’s Day -o-

I have an absolutely wonderful mother. I got to spend Saturday evening with her and the rest of my family at a gala supporting Single Carrot Theater in Baltimore. We also had a wonderful brunch Sunday morning. My mom is a beautiful, kind, patient, capable, sweet, intelligent, and endlessly forgiving woman. I hope she and all the other mothers in the world had a lovely weekend.

Bonues: Nature’s toughest mothers from BBC.

-o- Which is greener: a steak or a veggie burger? -o-

If you love the planet, you love veggies… right? Conventional wisdom holds that beef – factory raised, hormone injected, delicious delicious beef – is terrible for the planet and you’re terrible for eating each raw tasty morsel. However, people are beginning to realize that its the overproduction of food that destroys its ‘green-ness.’

Raw veggies are of course the best for the energy-in energy-out ratio, but veggie burgers and all of the processes required to make them taste like beef could be worse that grass-fed beef people are trying to replace it with.

Experts weigh in on a Mother Jones forum.

-o- Top 10 Twitter pics of the week from Mashable’s Charlie White -o-

These are always so fun. Love Beyonce’s dress. Check them out: Slideshow.

-o- According to The Washington Post, graduates are facing a better markets this year -o-

Finally some good news on the employment front. While the recession has been relatively easy on those with higher degrees, matriculating students still didn’t have it easy. Now, students graduating have better chances of finding jobs than those who have graduated in the last three years. Here’s the article from The Washington Post.

-o- Van Halen’s “No Brown M&Ms backstage rule” -o-

Turns out he had a really good reason: Over-sexed over drugged rockstars try to get away with whatever they can. While that may regularly be the case, Van Halen’s brown M&Ms were really an ingenuous idea to detect venue neglect. If you haven’t heard the rumors and reasons… check out the NPR piece and video.

-o- Partisan divide in baby-naming? -o-

This is really kind of funny. Is nothing off limits? It’s not that people are consciously giving their kids  political names like Bill O’Rights, Ellie Phants, or Don Q. Kong (hmmm…). However political divides apparently influence parents and the names they give their kids. To find out how and to determine if you agree, see the NPR article.

-o- Cooking this week: Pasta Salad -o-

Here’s a Pasta Pomodoro salad from The Parsley Thief; we plan to add some shredded rotisserie chicken. Mmmmm. Doesn’t this look incredible?

(Image credit: The Parsley Thief)

-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-

Thanks to Brian for helping me out this week… and happy four-year anniversary to my perfect man.

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A funny thing happened on the way to this Monday… the Oscars! Huge lobster found off the coast of Maine

-o- The Oscars happened! -o-

Sacha Baron Cohen stole the show, in my opinion, plugging The Dictator in costume. No surprise there! A few hours after the photo below was taken, Samantha Murphy on Mashable Entertainment writes about his “shenanigans.” The actor and comedian dumped the fake ashes of Kim Jong Il onto Ryan Seacrest… here’s Murphy’s piece.

(Jason Merritt – GETTY IMAGES)

And the winners are…

Best Picture – The Artist, Michel Hazanavicius
Best Actor – Jean Dujardin, The Artist
Best Director – Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist
Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography – Hugo, Martin Scorcese
Best Actress – Meryl Streep, The Iron Lady
Best Original Screenplay – Midnight in Paris, Woody Allen

  • Coverage from The New Yorker throughout the year of Best Picture nominees; Archive.
  • Oscars “Snubs and Omissions”, according to ForbesAccording to the piece, the failure of any of these six films to receive a nomination is to be considered a notable omission: We Need To Talk About KevinThe Girl With The Dragon TattooDrive, Bridesmaids, and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2. Article. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo won Best Film Editing, though…
  • By 9:30 p.m., 3 book-based films had won an award.
  • Bonus from 2011’s ceremony: CollegeHumor’s “Top Ten ‘James Franco Is Stoned’ Oscar Moments”; video.

-o-  Toddler-sized lobster found in Maine, the Titantic’s final lunch menu up for auction -o-

Bon Appetit’s food blog Friday had some great entries: the Titantic’s final lunch menu is up for auction and expected to fetch 100,000 pounds, a 27-pound lobster was found and released of the coast of Maine, and astronauts, theoretically, crave spicy foods due to a compromised sense of smell.

Here’s the Telegraph piece on the menu auction, and here’s the MSNBC article on the huge lobster.  Find the other selections and links in BA‘s blog post.

(source: Reuters)

-o- Ebook variation strategies from The Guardian -o-

Political pamphlets, serial-style novels… what other tricks of the publishing trade are ebook marketers using to get readers interested and keep them there?

Here’s the piece by Benedicte Page.

-o- Ben and Jerry’s drop fortune cookie bits from Lin-sanity ice cream -o-

And it continues… after an ESPN writer was fired and a news anchor suspended for using and then repeating the phrase “Chink in the Armor” in regard to Jeremy Lin, Ben and Jerry’s just announced they’ve replaced fortune cookie pieces with waffle cone bits in their Lin-inspired ice cream, “Taste the Lin-Sanity.”

Here’s the article on CNN.

Ben & Jerrys Apologizes for Lin Sanity Fortune Cookie Ice Cream

(Image Source: Boston Globe)

-o- 10 Movie Poster Clichés -o-

You’ll be amazed and impressed and the number of examples Christophe Courtois has found for each of his categories. Among them? Large faces above small figures on a beach, people lying in bed, and a stark blue background with an image, often a silhouette, in the foreground of the poster.

From 22 Words: List, with numerous examples.

-o- Survival Books for the Apocalypse -o-

From io9.com, “Survival Books to keep on your bookshelf in case of the apocalypse”; here’s the list.

-o- Slutty Girl Brownies on The Londoner -o-

(Source: The Londoner)

Drooling. Seriously. Recipe (click if you dare).

A funny thing happened on the way to this Monday… An inspiring story for the would-be published novelist, Nile Gardner’s Top 10 Conservative Movies of the Modern Era

-o- It’s Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day -o-

  • What’s been happening in the District this weekend? Find some of the events, lectures and discussions that occurred earlier this weekend and are continuing into the week here.
  • Read ABCNews‘ coverage of the quote controversy (just the newest of, in my opinion, unfortunate conflicts over this new impressive memorial) here.
                                            (photo credit: Rachel Cooper, about.com)
  • What’s cooking today? Epicurious suggests you regard the day off of work and the weather as reasons to break out the crock pot or the stock pot (and end up with leftovers for the week). Find “Federal Holiday Food Projects” here. I’ve been planning to make vegetable soup all week but will be waiting until Wednesday when I will have turnips and spinach (*see below). Here is a super yummy-looking chicken soup recipe from Foodista.

-o- And the winner is… -o-

                                                  (photo credit: The Inquisitr.com)
Check out the full list of Golden Globes nominees and winners; here are red-carpet photos from The Washington Post.

I didn’t get to watch the show, but there are a few categories in which I was interested.

  • Downton Abbey (Masterpiece) on PBS won the award for Best Mini-Series or Motion Picture Made for Television.
  • Martin Scorese won the Best Director award for Hugo.
  • Matt LeBlanc won the award for Best Actor in a Television Series – Comedy or Musical for the Showtime production Episodes. Also nominated? Alec Baldwin from NBC’s 30 Rock and David Duchovny from Showtime’s Californication.
-o- One man’s list of the Top 10 Conservative Films -o-
I find even the idea of listing  “conservative” or “liberal” films a bit absurd (mostly because I think that all forms of art are by nature rather subjective) let alone ranking them not quite by quality but by their representation of certain values. But still, this was fun to read. I recommend you read the whole piece by Nile Gardner of The Telegraph. Well-written and intriguing.
Number one? Chariots of Fire,  directed by Hugh Hudson and released in 1981.
Find out why… Here’s the full list!
Read Asawin Suebsaeng‘s article “One Right-Winger’s Terrible List of ‘Top 10 Conservative Movies'” here in Mother Jones.
-o- The best Brunch blog post I’ve ever seen -o-
The White Library’s “Farmhouse Breakfast Brunch Inspiration” post is indeed inspiring, not to mention mouthwatering. On the menu? Quiche, maple bacon, and perfect little French toast triangles.
                                  (photo credit: Sandra of The White Library)
-o- Amanda Hocking, self-published millionaire -o-
Hocking, in need of a few hundred dollars to make ends meet, ending up making over a million dollars self-publishing her novels and selling them online. I found this story riding home on the metro one day and was truly inspired. Not for myself necessarily,  but for the several brilliant and creative people I know who have written novels and are truly, seemingly fruitlessly, to share them with the world.
I hope you too enjoy reading Amanda’s story. Here’s the article from The Guardian. And here’s the list of her books for sale on Amazon.com!
While you’re there, check out Underwood by A.M. Henry. I’m reading it now and enjoying it immensely. The author of Underwood is another writer using Amazon.com’s self-publishing options to distribute her book; you can get her book in paperback.

-o- What’s on my menu this week -o-

  • Schezuan tofu and green bean stir fry. Here’s the recipe from The Huffington Post.
    Szechuan Tofu & Green Bean Stir-Fry                                                             (photo credit: Ken Burris)
  • Turnip soup from Epicurious.

A funny thing happened on the way to this Monday… Dean Obeidallah’s “If Only” 2011 Headlines; Words that should never make it to 2012

-o- Dean Obeidallah’s “The 2011 I Wish Had Happened” -o-
A satiric list of headlines that would have been extremely hilarious had they truly populated the papers last year. Of course, some of these are scarily not that difficult to imagine. My favorites include: “Texas Gov. Rick Perry Forgets His First Name” and “Sarah Palin announces her candidacy for president of the United States.” Enjoy!

Read the full CNN Special column here.

-o- Lake Superior State University’s List of 2012-Forbidden Words -o-
A group of what I assume are students from Lake Superior State University created a list of words and phrases that, in their opinion, should be terminated along with 2011. Some of my favorites: “Baby Bump”, because it makes pregnancy seem like something “hip” and “in”; “Pet Parent”, used to identify humans who have decided that members of other species can be their children; and “Thank you in advance” which, I have to admit, I have actually used before, and I agree with their sentence of the term. It essentially removes the choice from the person from which you are asking a favor and assumes they will do it for you no matter what. Rude, for sure.

Find the full list here.

-o-  Epicurious‘ List of Food and Wine Events this year -o-
Joanne Camas collected a list of food and wine events happening in the U.S. in January 2012. Among those that look particularly enticing: A Wine and Cupcakes Weekend in New Jersey and a Charleston Mixologist Competition.

Find the full list here.

Also from Epicurious, food photography tips (for all the other bloggers out there like me, wishing their food looked as good as it tasted!)

-o- The Washington Post‘s list of advice for budget-conscious resolutions -o-
Every year,  one of the most common New Year’s resolutions is to be more frugal, to save more money, etc. Margaret Webb Pressler has come up with some insightful tips for those serious about keeping more of their money. Among those that resonated most strongly with me: UNSUBSCRIBE from all those coupon/deal sites you love such as RueLaLa, ideeli and yes, even Groupon; Use more loyalty cards (Rite Aid is among those stores which offer serious discounts to cardholders).

Read the full column here.

-o- Ron Paul still garners (somewhat reluctant) media attention -o-

Here’s the Posts Politics coverage on Paul’s “apocalyptic” campaign speeches, which they theorize resonate with votes more due to the dismal nature of the moment that the attractiveness of the man himself. Here’s Michael Gerson in their Opinions section on “what if?” Paul were to actually get the GOP nomination.

-o- Top 25 Most Shared Stories in 2011 -o-
Where would my weekly “news” posts be without Mashable? Here, Mashable Social Media collected a list of the top 25 shared stories in December 2011. Number One: Damn You Auto Correct Reveals 9 Funniest Texts of the Year.

How many can you guess correctly? Find them all here.

Also from Mashable: their Top 10 Biggest Stories of 2011.