Write Lightning is a blog from writer Deb Thompson.
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Wed, Oct 31 2007

Firehouse cooks go against the grain with grains

We have a friend who is severely lactose-intolerant and so we spend lots of time looking for dining establishments that she can enjoy. We also hunt down the occasional recipe that might be safe for her to bite into with us. The problem with a lot of meals is that there is a lot of cross-contamination in restaurants when a grill that has been used to cook with butter is then used to cook with no dairy. They're probably not going to scrub every bit of dairy-containing products off the grill. While this might be acceptable for some folks, our friend suffers horrid intestinal symptoms if she eats food prepared on grills that have previously been used to cook with butter or other dairy ingredients. For this reason, her favorite restaurants are vegan, because there is simply no dairy in the establishment to begin with, so nothing gets contaminated. We've gone with her to Millennium in San Francisco, but it's a bit sad that there aren't more everyday hoices for those in her situation.

While doing a bit of food research this morning I surfed my way over to the web site of the vegan firefighters at Station No. 2 in Austin. When one thinks of firefighters cooking one generally envisions bowls of rich meat-laden chili, mounds of fried chicken and pork tenderloin with a rich accompanying sauce. These particular firefighters, who make up only a portion of the entire team, started churning out vegan enchildadas and tofu burgers when at least one of them found out his cholesterol levels and family history may have been about to put him in harm's way.

It's nice to know that there are fire fighters out there who take their health so seriously. After all, who knows when the rest of us might be dependent on them to be at their optimum health we call upon them to help us in an emergency?

posted at: 11:11 | category: /Health and Fitness | link to this entry

End of October shaking

I suppose this might be what one would call a retro-post, since I missed posting on Tuesday. We had a little attention-getter last night about 8:05, a 5.6 quake that definitely had some rocking chair motion to it. My spouse and I were in separate rooms, but we both experienced a jolt and noise, then a bit of rocking, then a lull, and then a rebuilding of movement.

It's that rebuilding of movement that will usually send Californians into a doorway, because it often signals a fairly large quake. We had perhaps 15 seconds of shaking, but one's body reacts so strongly that shaking duration almost always feels as though it's longer than it actually is. After the Loma Prieta quake in 1989 there were many of us who imagined more aftershocks than there really were. I suppose it's partly physiological, because a quake can interfere with one's sense of equilibrium. But it's also likely to be a psychological reaction. We humans sometimes shake in response to fear. When shaking is what causes the fear in the first place, it's bound to confuse our sense of self-preservation.

posted at: 05:46 | category: /Miscellaneous | link to this entry

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Stealin' copy is as bad as horse-thievin'
and cattle rustlin'! Lightning may strike
such varmints when they least expect it!