Archive for September, 2005

BAV News – October 2005

Wednesday, September 28th, 2005

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Call for Speakers

Saturday, September 24th, 2005

The Compassionate Living program, sponsored by Bay Area Vegetarians, is a monthly event series that provide an opportunity to examine and present different topics related to vegetarian living, education, and advocacy via speakers, discussions, and films. It’s included speakers like Erik Marcus, Christine Morrissey, Nora Kramer, Paul Shapiro, and (next week) lauren Ornelas and topics like Meat Market, Effective Tabling Tips & Techniques, California Animal Agriculture, and Effective Communication.

We are now setting up the schedule for 2006. We’d like to keep it loosely in these proportions:

4 presentations
4 discussion/workshop/interactive type events
4 discussions based on vegetarian / animal rights books

I’ve brainstormed some tenative ideas for 2006, but nothing is concrete — yet! So, I would love to get some input from y’all —

1) If you have an idea for an activity or topic that should be included, please email me.

2) If you are a dynamic speaker and would like to share your knowledge on a specific topic related to vegetarianism or advocacy for vegetarianism, or have a specific skill to share, please email me your event proposal and it would be helpful if you could provide some info on your background/qualifications to present this topic.

3) If you have suggestions for veg / AR book topics, please see the forum thread that Lisa recently posted.

The Compassionate Living program series is run entirely by volunteers and volunteer speakers, and provided free of charge to members as well as the general public.

Thank YOU for your support of the Compassionate Living program and our goal to support and promote vegetarianism and build the veg community.

Tammy & Chris
Co-Founders of Bay Area Vegetarians

BEST OF VEG contest .. coming soon!

Tuesday, September 20th, 2005

It’s almost time for our annual survey for the


in the San Francisco Bay Area!

We’ll be offering voting at Saturday’s Compassionate Living Program, at our 4th Anniversary party on Sunday, 10/2, and online.

Wait til you hear about all the great prizes lined up! Some yummy stuff 🙂

BAVeg Anniversary Party 10/2

Monday, September 19th, 2005

Celebration Party

What: BAVeg Anniversary Celebration Party
When: Sun Oct 2nd, 2pm-7pm
Where: San Mateo
Admission: Donations appreciated to support Bay Area Vegetarians


– Vegan Food Party – bring your favorite dish to share
– Door Prizes and fun give-aways
– Volunteer Appreciation and Advocacy Rewards Program Ceremony
– Special presentation by lauren Ornelas, Viva!USA
– Special guests, Howard Lyman and his wife, Willow Jeane

RSVP NOW for event location:


Come Celebrate
It’s been 4 years and 385 events since Bay Area Vegetarians, aka BAVeg, started in October 2001.

Whether you’re new to BAVeg, or been with us since the beginning, please join us to celebrate our 4th Anniversary (or Birthday) on Saturday, Oct. 2nd at 2 pm.

BAVeg is a diverse group, and we have events all over the Bay Area, from social to educational to advocacy.

In keeping with that theme, this year’s party is more than just celebrating 4 wonderful years and eating delicious vegan foods. It’s about –

1) Connecting and supporting like-minded people and working together towards our goal of promoting vegetarianism

2) Celebrating what we have accomplished together, and what is still to come
3) Raise Funds for Bay Area Vegetarians to continue our efforts to promote vegetarianism in the Bay Area and support/connect the vegetarian and animal rights community.



Vegan Food Party from 2 to 7 pm

4:30 pm – Volunteer Appreciation and Advocacy Rewards Program

From 5 pm to 6 pm, as part of our Compassionate Living Program, we’ll have a special presentation in honor of World Farmed Animals Day:

“Campaigning for Farmed Animals: the Whole Story”
a talk by lauren Ornelas, Viva!USA

It was headline news in USA Today and mentioned across the nation by Newsweek and other news channels when when Whole Foods Market adopted strict guidelines for its “meat”, dairy, and egg suppliers, and John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods, revealed he’d gone vegan. These changes were a direct result of a tireless 3 year campaign by Viva!USA led by lauren Ornelas.

lauren will discuss, from an activists perspective, the behind-the-scenes work of investigating, launching, maintaining, and hopefully winning a campaign for farmed animals.

Viva!USA is a Viva! is a dynamic non-profit organization campaigning on behalf of animals killed for food. They do investigations of factory farms and then produce campaign materials for students and activists, helping people change to a veggie diet. Please visit their website for more information.

Check event calendar for full details:

New local podcast

Friday, September 9th, 2005

Hi folks

Just because we *can*, Chris and I have started a podcast. In lay terms, a podcast is like a self-produced “radio” show on the Internet. It’s normally connected with a blog. Some people listen to them via iPods but you can use anything that an play an MP3 file – like a computer – to listen to it.

In our podcast, we want to share our experiences and strategies of promoting vegetarianism via Bay Area Vegetarians with a wider audience — to share what works, what doesn’t work, thoughts on everday vegan living, and other interesting vegan tidbits.

We’ve relaunched our original website to host the podcast –

As some original list people may recall, was our original website which we used to host information about SFBAVEG when it was first “born”.

Also, if you have iTunes, or something similar, you can “subscribe” and each new episode will be automatically delivered to you.

We just uploaded our first real episode. Check it out. Amazingly, it’s already been downloaded a bunch and we haven’t even posted about it anywhere.

Tammy & Chris
in LA, hoping to podcast from the PETA gala

P.S: Just for fun – google on “vegan podcast” and we’re #1 🙂

Mat Thomas

Thursday, September 1st, 2005

Mat Thomas

Struggling with being vegan? Or finding your advocacy niche? Learn how Mat Thomas discovered his inner vegan strengths.

Name: Mat Thomas
Profession: writer/editor
City: San Francisco

Age: 35

How long I have been vegetarian/vegan:
I’ve been vegetarian 9 years, vegan for 3½ years.

What motivated me to make this change:

I became a vegetarian soon after moving from New York to California: it was a time of major transition for me, and I was wide open to new experiences. I was attending grad school, studying to be a transpersonal psychotherapist, and was assigned to read an interview with John Robbins for a class called Paradigms of Consciousness. I became a vegetarian that day, in July 1996.

Over the next few years, I tried going vegan many times, but I didn’t meet any vegans until I’d already been vegetarian for five years, so change was difficult. I was working as a business proposal writer for a managed behavioral healthcare company, occupying a cubicle in a Financial District skyscraper, when I met my first two vegans (out of 2,500 employees). We’d been going to dinner Friday nights, and their influence facilitated my transformation from conflicted vegetarian into empowered vegan.

Becoming a vegan was one of my delayed responses to 9/11: like many people, I was asking hard questions about the meaning of life, and that’s when the change took hold. I became a vegan in February 2002, after eating a cheese omelet that made me nauseous. I said to myself, “That’s it,” and it was: I just knew then that, from that day forward, I was going to be a vegan for the rest of my life.

How I got started in activism:

Determined to help animals, I began doing activism within weeks of going vegan. Through BAV, I found out what was happening in the Bay Area. I started out by leafleting with other activists (usually accompanied by a TV/VCR showing factory farming videos) because that seemed like entry-level “activism” to me. After a couple of months of this, I got involved with a local grassroots group that was just starting up at the time called Freedom For Animals (FFA). I hit the streets with them on various campaigns, and wrote some flyers using my background in marketing and psychology. I enjoyed seeing “average folks” actually read what I’d written about factory farming issues, and hopefully making more compassionate choices as a result.

I did public outreach on and off for more than two years, but decided to stop because the emotions it raised – grief, anguish, rage – were driving me to despair. Ultimately, I found I could be a more effective advocate by focusing my energies on writing. To prosper, activists must do what they find most personally exciting and motivating: for me, that’s working with language.

The hardest part of being vegan:
Living in a society that engages in a form of speciesist holocaust every moment of every day, and having to interact with those who can’t see the truth or empathize with enslaved animals. The fact is that most non-vegetarians would rather eat the corpse-flesh of a factory-farmed animal than read the words I write to describe that animal’s life and death! In psychological terms, this widespread disconnect from reality is symptomatic of an undiagnosed emotional disorder of epidemic proportions. Yet, killing and eating animals is the norm, so I strive to attain a higher level of sanity in a world where mass murder is considered natural, acceptable and inevitable. I cope by trying to use my voice to move people toward greater sensitivity.

What I am working on:

  • I work for In Defense of Animals (IDA), writing and editing their weekly e-news, action alerts (e.g., Bay Area Events), web content, leaflets, brochures, magazine articles: whatever the organization needs.
  • I’ve written a number of articles for VegNews, and wrote some profiles of companies specializing in vegan travel for the latest issue.
  • I just finished my first article for Satya magazine, which will probably be in the October issue, and have plans for more articles.
  • I write a monthly column for The Animal World, a paper out of Tennessee.
  • I enjoy writing for BAV, and a lot of my stuff is on their website to read or print out for tabling: The Rough Guide to Animal Rights,

    “But You Eat Fish, Don’t You?”, Veg Mentor flyer, BAVeg brochure Check them out

  • • I volunteer for the production crew of Undercover TV, an animal rights television show that broadcasts on over 50 public access stations nationwide, including San Francisco, Berkeley, Marin County, Pacifica and Palo Alto.

How others can get involved (with above):

  • Sign up for IDA’s e-news and action alerts at
  • Watch Undercover TV (check for days/times/channels).
  • I’m looking for artists and graphic designers who want to collaborate on advocacy materials (e.g., brochures and booklets) that will reflect a high level of visual/textual integration and eye-catching aesthetic style. E-mail me if you’re interested.

Advice to aspiring activists:
Apply your unique skills and talents to helping animals. If you’re good at something and you love doing it, make that work for yourself and the animals.

Who/what inspires you to keep going?

I share my life and apartment with two incredible cats, Zelda & Jasmine (a.k.a., Jazzie), both adopted from SF Animal Care & Control. One look in their eyes convinces me that seeking to save animals’ lives is among the noblest of callings.

BAV News – September 2005

Thursday, September 1st, 2005

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