If vegetables didn't have protein, how would elephants grow so big?

I was asked today at work if I'm vegetarian. (When asked where I thought we should go for the office holiday lunch I said I didn't care as long as I wouldn't have to eat meat/fish/poultry.) I said that I was pretty much a vegetarian. Another co-worker asked what I did to get enough protein. I was good. I didn't tell her that the protein needs of a human are significantly lower than what the beef/pork/poultry industries would like you to think. I did point out that there are more grams of protein in 100 calories of broccoli than in 100 calories of steak. I also pointed out that elephants grow very large and very strong while eating a vegetarian diet. She said she hadn't thought of it that way.

I really need to work on just saying "Yes" when people ask me if I'm vegetarian. I don't care much for the taste of meat/animal products anymore. Yes, I used to eat meat, but I don't now. I think I avoid the subject because I don't want to have to debate/defend my choices. I'm already twitchy about being vegetarian here in the land of "meat and three", given the nasty comments which have been made about vegetarians by people who don't know my eating preferences.

Winter Has *NOT* Arrived
The high temperature today was in the 50s. The radio guys this morning were bemoaning the arrival of winter. This is not winter. Winter is when the high temperature doesn't get above freezing. For days or weeks on end.

And rain does not make the roads "horrible". It makes them wet.

Speaking of Roads and Driving
Apparently there was a driving oopsie at the corner by the local gun/convenience store. One of the street signs was mowed down and the fire hydrant was lying in the ditch. I'm not sure how they managed that, but they did a good job of it.

And as long as we're talking about mowing things over, for some reason the big yellow cement pillars marking the driveway at the south end of the Sam's/WalMart parking lot have once again been run over and knocked down. There are four or five of these 4-5" diameter pillars on each side of the two driveways. And on both driveways the pillars on the outgoing side of the driveway have been hit and knocked askew. I seriously hope that nobody managed to do that with a passenger vehicle. If they did, they need to lose their driver's license.

Recent Reading
I've been reading a couple of books by Michael Stackpole recently. The first is A Secret Atlas and the second in the series is Cartomancy. I'm having a little bit of trouble following all the story lines in Cartomancy (there are about 8 of them, I think), but it's very engaging. Lots of scheming and plotting going on by various princes, bureaucrats and others with a couple of invasions by barbarian hordes and some sorcery/magic to keep things interesting. There is a third book in the series, but I don't think it's out yet. One of the characters is apparently experiencing a past life, but I haven't yet been able to figure out who he is in this altered reality. Although there are many concurrent storylines in the book, each chapter is fairy short, which means I can actually end my lunch at the end of a chapter, instead of being left hanging until the end of the day.

Next to read are Making Money by Terry Pratchett and Boo Hiss by Rene Gutteridge. Mr. Pratchett announced today that he's been diagnosed with a rare and very early form of Alzheimer's disease, which is a bummer. He will apparently keep writing as long as he can. I found my copy of Neuromancer by William Gibson, which I still haven't read, so that's moving up on the "To Read" list as well.

The "To Read" list at this moment includes (in addition to the three aforementioned books): Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson, The Art of Happiness by the Dalai Lama, A Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin, and Sweater Design in Plain English by Maggie Righetti. That's just the books I have in my personal library. I am, of course, highly susceptible to being seduced by books at the library. :o)

Bad Shoulder
I have managed to do something bad to my right shoulder. I suspect it's an overuse injury due to moving my arm from the keyboard shelf to the desktop (and the mouse) when I was spending 7 hours a day cleaning my TB data files. Now my shoulder aches and I find it uncomfortable to sleep on my right side. This wouldn't be a problem if I didn't do most of my heavy lifting with my right arm. I'm trying to stay away from daily dosing with anti-inflammatory meds, but I may have to break down and self-medicate. I'm also doubling my daily dose of chondroitin and reducing the amount of time I spend cleaning data each day. Hopefully that will give my shoulder a chance to heal over the next month or so. Now if only my knitting won't aggravate it too....


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