Good Reads #4

Today’s GREAT read will change the way you eat and the way you think about food.

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In In Defense of Food, Michael Pollan makes the claim that most of what we eat today is not, in fact, food but instead “edible foodlike product” engineered by science.  It makes sense, if you think about it, when it comes to most boxed meals a person can get in a grocery store–dehydrated this, enriched that, most things we eat go through so much processing that even something that appears simple has an ingredient list (mostly unpronounceable) that takes up half of the side panel on the box.

He narrows down his “Manifesto” to this easy-to-remember slogan: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” He adds another rule of thumb–shop around the perimeter of the grocery store, that’s where the actual vegetables, the fresh meat, and the fresh bread are located… makes sense, doesn’t it? As a former adherent of the “I can’t cook!” crowd, I would encourage anyone skeptical about using actual ingredients to give it a go. Ask a friend who is good at cooking for help… healthy cooking is in fact easy!

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Monday Good Reads #2

Today for my Monday Good Reads I appeal to the testosterone-side of my readers and present for your consideration Dispatches, by Michael Herr.

This was another book assigned to me for a class (I will break this trend eventually I promise). Thing is, I ultimately dropped the class and read this book anyway, it was that good. This memoir was written after Herr, a war correspondent in Vietnam for Esquire, returned from the front and was published in 1977. At the time, as well as now, many veterans from this era are reluctant or unable to talk about their experiences–this provides a glimpse (at times graphic) into one of America’s worst foreign interventions. As a result of the critical acclaim of this memoir, Herr was consulted and credited as a writer in Vietnam War films Full Metal Jacket and Apocalypse Now.

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Actually, I have 2 copies of this book (mistake in ordering them back when I was in school). Anyone want to borrow one?

Monday Good Reads

I’m going to try to do a new thing here, and on Mondays recommend a book for all those keeping an eye out for a good read… something of substance.

My first Good Read has got to be a book that I was assigned for class last fall semester. It has recently come out in paperback and has also reached a spot on the NYT bestseller list, which means you can probably get a copy online for a good price :-D

Half the Sky is a compilation of true stories authors Nicholas D Kristof and his wife Sheryl WuDunn have gathered in their years of world travel and investigation of the status of women worldwide. I follow Kristof’s blog on the New York Times and he has thought-provoking articles on all subjects, but women and poverty is one that he clearly takes to heart.

Half the Sky
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Many have said that this book is difficult to get through–due to the subject matter, shocking at times. However, I found it inspiring in many cases and it gives me some direction when it comes to the big question– “what can I do to help in this world?” The answer I have found is aid my fellow women around the world. In addition to sponsoring a teenaged girl in Bangladesh, I am volunteering at a home for single mothers in my hometown (beginning soon).

Perhaps you will find some inspiration in this book? If you need a little more help, feel free to check out http://www.halftheskymovement.org/.