Assorted Mysticisms


So people have been blathering about the USDA’s new dietary horoscope. I punched in my info and I’m a Grain with Beans Rising, with Mars in Vegetables and the Moon in Mac’n’Cheez. I must take care to eat extra grain-fed beef during the warm seasons to keep my Monsanto-ADM AgraVedic dosha from becoming aggravated. Since I was born in the Year of the Rooster, each week I will try to eat precisely three servings of purple-aura veggies (parsnips, swiss chard, eggplant, portobello mushrooms, seaweed).

I feel healthier already.


Jeanne at Body and Soul has yet another post that hits you like a brick:

[I]n Joseph Ratzinger, standing by and watching people being herded into death camps without saying a word, I’m afraid I recognize myself. Very afraid. For me, it’s essential to reiterate that this is wrong because I need to acknowledge that it would be as wrong for me as it was for Ratzinger. It’s far more important, really, than my saying that it’s wrong to take pleasure in other people’s pain. That’s a sin I have no inclination toward, so condemning it is more judgment of someone else’s character than honesty about my own.

But this I also know about myself: If I had made the choice Ratzinger made, I would feel guilty about it for the rest of my life. I would ask myself over and over again how I could have done such a thing, and I would not accept easy answers. I would spend the rest of my life trying to atone for that. I know my conscience would not let me tell myself that everyone did the same thing and I had no real choice. It would be no comfort to me to know that other people had done worse things. And certainly if I later had the power to stop other people who were fighting oppression from doing so, I could not, in good conscience, use my power in that way.

For me to say that it’s fine that Joseph Ratzinger co-operated with evil, because few did better and some did much worse, would be to grant myself dispensation, to say that as long as I don’t personally torture anybody, for instance, I don’t need to object when my country tortures people.

This was written in reference to discussion on an earlier post about the contrast between Joseph Ratzinger and Oscar Romero, which I also found resonant.


My actual dietary guideline – “eat a fuckton of vegetables” – is working nicely now that I’ve discovered the yummiest salad dressing in the entire universe. If you’ve ever needed charts of domestic violence rates broken down by gender, Alas, A Blog is the place to go. Liberalism (with respect to domestic violence laws and funding) does indeed save lives.

Meanwhile back at Pharyngula, a discussion about ginormous trilobites probes the important issue of whether or not various extinct arthropods would’ve been delicious. To what extent can we generalize from yummy crustaceans? I was hoping for some professional insight on the matter, and maybe a cladogram color-coded for tastiness; alas, it looks like I’ll have to pioneer the phylogenetics of tastiness all by my lonesome. If you’ve ever eaten weird bugs, you should go over there and add to the growing pool of anecdotes data. Also, trilobite cookies!


  1. Rana wrote:

    I _love_ your food-o-scope!
    I too am supposed to “eat a fuckton of vegetables.” *sigh*
    …they always rot before I get to them.

  2. yami wrote:

    Mine do too. It helps to have some of them waiting in the ground, instead of in the fridge; even so I’ve let heads of lettuce grow to bitterness rather than get off my duff and harvest them – maybe if I didn’t have to shake out half a dozen earwigs every time, blech.
    I think I need a “yuck” emoticon.

  3. Rana wrote:

    Earwigs! Ew! Ew! Ew!
    Yeah, a yuck emoticon would be appropriate there!

  4. des von bladet wrote:

    Ratzinger’s God of choice is of course widely associated with forgiveness.
    But _obviously_ trilobites were yummy! Trilobite omelette with dodo eggs is just exquisite!

  5. yami wrote:

    Horseshoe crabs are widely reported not to be yummy, though. And seafood omelettes?
    And and, I’m not forgiving any earwigs!

  6. des von bladet wrote:

    Seafood omelettes! Are woodlice yummy? (I forget what they’re called in the FDR: cute li’l land crustaceans that roll up into a ball when anything frightens them, which everything does.)

  7. yami wrote:

    It’s a roly-poly in Dixie, potato bug in Mormonland, and a pill bug elsewhere (ref). I’ve never eaten them but I’d bet they’re all crunch and no yum; one would have to zap them with an embiggening ray.

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