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March 2011

March 31, 2011

Thoughts on Making the Hunger Challenge a Bit More Challenging

The Hunger Challenge is an annual event put on by United Way of King County (WA) in which people volunteer to live on a limited food budget of about $7 a person/day for several days in order to gain empathy with people who are living on SNAP (food stamps). Some people wrote, made videos, etc. about their experiences.

As you might imagine, this was executed with varying degrees of success. Some people wrote excellent posts with recipes, resources, strategies and tips for eating on the cheap. Others shared just how difficult the entire thing was for them, some of them before the challenge even started. Yes, really. The response also swung widely with accolades being heaped upon a few bloggers for making it through a single day to, perhaps my favorite, "Poverty isn't a f*cking writing prompt." (Thank you, Miss Britt.)

I did my share of snarky tweeting about stunts and playing at poverty while the challenge was going on and while I do regret that a few friends thought I might be talking about them (I wasn't), I stand by it. I find it offensive to have people pretend to a life that you know is extremely difficult and come away after 72 hours (or less) saying "it's easy." Whatever the intent, it seems dismissive and diminishes the experiences of people who lived it to the benefit of those who write about one small, and highly mitigated, aspect of it on the Interwebs.

However, amd importantly, I also understand that this was not the intent of the individuals who participated in, and wrote about, the Hunger Challenge. Yes, many of the issues people had with the Hunger Challenge came down to what individual bloggers wrote, but I am not calling them out. (Look ma, no links!)

 Instead, in the spirit of fighting the real enemy, and recognizing that while United Way is considering changes they are plannng on doing this again next year, I offer suggestions for structural changes in the Hunger Challenge in order to make it just a wee bit more realistic.

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March 25, 2011

In Which Ina Garten Doesn't Make a Wish

There are other, more thoughtful posts floating around on my computer half-written but I am annoyed in a more than 140 character kind of way about today's twitter outrage. In a nutshell, Ina Garten declined to cook with a terminally ill child who requested it through Make a Wish foundation.

We will now pause for the two-minute hate.

Done? Good. Moving on...

Continue reading "In Which Ina Garten Doesn't Make a Wish" »

March 09, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Tweaking My English Muffins

english muffins

I started with this recipe: English muffins and crumpets: an (almost) shared recipe and while it's closer to what I want, it's still not quite there.

Speaking of things that are not there...can we talk about me for a nanosecond? I have been ill lately, which is why I have been not here. (All I really want to say is that if anyone ever says to you, "quick choose a modifier for 'nausea and vomiting'..." you should NOT choose "intractable"...) This seems to be an ongoing thing (oh joy) so I have to figure out what the hell the food writer who doesn't eat much writes about (since we know I am not writing about myself). I am accepting input on this...

One of the very few things I can eat on my not so good days is English Muffins, hence the recipe tweaking. The next batch will be get a little more water and be cooked in rings. Photos soon. I hope.

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