Rants & Raves – 08/11/12

Oh, the webbernet! It gets me all riled up with dire news and mainstream idiocy, then blammo! it hits me with something so awesome, it must be shared. Welcome to this week’s collection of Rants & Raves!


I’m trying to be peaceful during my Whole30 and my thyroid experiment, but sometimes I allow stuff to get me worked up. Join me!

If you’re going to eat caviar, please don’t do it at Wendy’s
For a limited time, Wendy’s in Japan is offering a burger topped with lobster and caviar for $16. I’m all for putting luscious seafood on a burger… if it’s a grass-fed, organic burger, without a bun, served somewhere more appetizing than a Wendy’s. Sigh.

Do you really want to eat something called soy curls?!
These two sentences are really all you need to know: “Soy curls are an all natural alternative to meat that are heart healthy, delicious and easy to use.” and “Soy Curls are made from delicately textured select, non GMO, whole soybeans.” No, no, no. That is all.

I’m going to go with “yes”
CBS News asks, “Is sugar toxic?” Thanks to reader Janine for passing this along to us!


And now the good stuff. YAY!

Go, Frodo and Sam!
Steve at Nerd Fitness does a brilliant job of building a case for walking, making it seem romantic, fun, and yes! epic. I desperately needed this kind of message to remind me that walking is as essential to my fitness and health as the high-intensity workouts I covet. He writes: “I have never been more enthralled with just walking than after reading (and watching) the Lord of the Rings. In this day and age of planes, trains, and automobiles, it’s easy to neglect one of our most primal and genetic advantages as bipeds.”

The Steak Joint
Savor every word of this delicious essay from Esquire about the allure of eating a big hunk of meat in the middle of the night. “That’s a steak,” I said… That’s a f*cking steak.” The f*cking steak below was photographed by my husband Dave for It Starts With Food; makes you hungry, doesn’t it? (Don’t forget: you can get 15% off your order at US Wellness Meats until August 21!)

Oh, Lucy!
Lucille Ball was the perfect blend of beauty, smarts, sass, and sense of humor. In this piece, NPR takes an affectionate look at her high jinks related to food. Who can forget the infamous candy factory scene or the Vitameatavegamin?!

I like to look at things upside down
Now that I’m finally really comfortable kicking up into a handstand against the wall, my next goal is to learn to do a free-standing handstand. This video from Breaking Muscle is a killer primer on how to get from “terrified to try” to “maybe able to do it in the foreseeable future.” (For all my posts on handstand, go here — and to read about when I finally, finally, finally learned to kick up into a handstand, check this out.)

Olympics Links

I can’t believe the Olympics come to an end this weekend! This is my last batch of London-related, sporty-spice links for you.

Buzzfeed: The 21 Best Olympic Dopplegangers
My fave: The Queen and Walter Bishop from Fringe

NBCOlympics.com: Swimmer Admits to Breaking the Rules During Gold Medal Performance in London
Boo! Hiss! I say.

Buzzfeed: The Evolution of the Vault
Don’t miss this amazing side-by-side comparison of 1956 and 2012.

New York Times: One Race, Every Medalist Ever
A beautiful representation of how sprinters keep getting faster. Stick around to the end for a really sweet wrap up that will give you goosebumps about young athletes and their bright futures.

SBNation: Weightlifting at the Olympics
Badass writing and an astounding video of a 568-lb. clean and jerk. “If you make it out of the depths of the squat, you can rack, adjust, and just chill with a baby elephant on your clavicles for a second. Matthias Steiner could do it. You really should not ever try to find out if you can, because you would most likely die or explode or both.”

Discovery News: How Do Olympians Keep Getting Better?
“When someone finally does break a time-to-beat, a fresh record can give the next generation of Olympians a whole new idea of what’s possible. When inspired, the mind can exert powerful control over the body.”

And finally, as much as I enjoyed celebrating the victory of Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh, was in awe of Michael Phelps, and was totally taken in by the bravado of Usain Bolt, my favorite Olympian was Aliya Mustafina. She has sassy attitude to spare, and she backed it up with beautiful performances. As much as I loved watching her fly and twist, my favorite moment was when her coach tried to give her a comforting pat on the shoulder and she shrugged it off with a serious pout and a look of death in her eyes. I might have yelled “Thatta girl!” at the TV.


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  • Kathleen says:

    I’m trying to be peaceful (and non-judge-y) during my Whole30 too but I’ve been getting SO riled up particularly when it comes to food stuff. I’m trying to lead by quiet example but now that I’ve “seen the light” I feel like a crazy whole food anti-grain zealot!

    Anyway, love your weekly rants and raves. XO

    • Mel says:

      I feel you, sister. On one hand, I’m not the Food Police, and I really don’t JUDGE people based on what they eat. But on the other hand, it breaks my heart to see people who think they’re “eating healthy” and damaging their bodies.

      I guess I’m an anti-grain zealot for myself, and stuck in an empathy-frustration cycle with everyone else 😉


      • aseafish says:

        I agree. I don’t tell people I’m around what I think they should eat (unless they’re asking me directly.) Still, it’s so hard and sad to see them choking down horrid food they don’t even like because they’ve been told it’s healthy.

  • Ms Jane says:

    I loved Aliya too! and I don’t think she would have thanked god so much if she’d won…she got where she is all by herself!!! Alas our Australian swim team should have perhaps leaned on the Lord a tad!

  • Cynthia Hatton says:

    I ordered the Kindle version of Well Fed and then ordered the pdf version for the special price of $1.00 (thank you). I cannot download the pdf version however, it is giving me a message error of missing data!! Help

    • Mel says:

      Cynthia, I’m not sure why the link isn’t working for you because it’s functioning just fine. Email me at mjoulwan@gmail.com and I’ll send you a download link you can use.

    • Wait…what? I have the hard copy version of Well Fed (which is AWESOME) but didn’t know about a special price PDF version. As I’m constantly talking about the recipes it would be nice to have an example at my fingertips. Is this special price still available somewhere?

  • Brooke says:

    I am always so excited for people when they break past the handstand fear! Congratulations! The hardest part is to go upside down, now that you have that out of the way the freestanding is not far behind. Practice hollow rocks and trying not to make a sound when kicking up on the wall. That way you have good control on the freestanding. Good luck and I can’t wait to read about your success on that freestanding handstand! BTW I LOVE Well Fed!

  • Delee D'Arcy says:

    thought about you and your handstand goals as I watched the Olympic diver balance on the edge tonight – WHOA! – that’s crazy since I’m still practicing my handstands off of a box!

    BTW – have cooked several of your WellFed recipes and have loved each and every one – some have already been repeats! Thanks for sharing your food and your journey!

  • sarah k. says:

    This just made my day. I had a super rough time yesterday while I was forced to watch my team practice their snatches, due to a shoulder injury that happened while waiting for a hip injury to heal (drama! I want to lift!) and this whole post has helped me cool off. I love that you do these. I loved the clean and jerk article so much that I made my husband sit and listen as I read it out loud. And he doesn’t care a fig about lifting. I’m excited to try the handstand stuff, since I just got handstands two weeks ago, and even started working towards handstand pushups (before I wrecked my shoulder…). I loved the whole darn thing. Thanks!

    • Mel says:

      I’m sorry to hear about your injury — it’s so hard to be patient. Be good to yourself!

      I’m glad you like these posts. Thanks for letting me know.

      Hang in there!

  • audiemommy says:

    My sister turned me on to your blog/website. I’m a new paleo convert and your website is amazing. I just ordered your book and can’t wait to receive it next week. I made your mayo recipe yesterday. All I can say is….AMAZING! I’ve never spent so much time in my kitchen! Thanks, Mel!

  • Robyn says:

    I feel for ya Sarah K! I just got into the paleo stength/interval training and diet after much research, and now I had an accident with my horse and have bruised ribs. Healing time is about 4-6 weeks.

    I feel AWFUL, and have no idea how to keep active, but I am walking about 1 hour a day, but even that is not conducive to healing, as I’m supposed to remain as “sedentary” as possible – the opposite of paleo! Any tips??

  • Reyn Grey says:

    I love the ‘Walking to Mordor’ blog post (Steve rocks!) So far I’m 8.9 miles in-as nerdy as it is I love striding along thinking about where I would actually be if I’d been along with Frodo and the gang.