Oct. 8th, 2013

elialshadowpine: (Default)
I am sharing this because Louis and Omi are dear friends of mine (Omi being actually my girlfriend). While they were visiting us here in late Spring/early Summer, they were supposed to get a regular check-up call from the Department of Social Services. However, Social Services never called, and even though Louis made multiple calls to try to get ahold of them, they were removed from the SNAP program. It is nearly six months later and they still are getting the run-around by their state, so they are having to use food banks in order to have enough food to eat.

Louis wrote this post because I was shocked at the quality/quantity -- or lack thereof -- of the food they were getting. I'm re-posting it because I expect I'm not the only one who was ignorant, and this is a pretty major deal; people who are going to food banks should not be receiving expired/rotten food. (They described receiving a food item with maggots at one point.)

Please read, and I would ask that people please re-post this, because having talked with some other friends, this is not an uncommon situation for food banks at all. (And I imagine that it is probably worse right now because of the gov't shutdown.)

Originally posted by [personal profile] louisadkins at Of Food Banks, or, Eating the Kindness of Strangers
(This post is posted public so that anyone can see it or share it, as needed.)

So, a friend asked me to sum up my experience with using the local food bank.

So, first thing to keep in mind. Our food bank is only able to provide service on a once-a-month basis. You tell them how many people you are providing for, and they base how much they give you off of that. In our case, they know we are a family of five.

In addition, you should know that the quality of the food is totally random. Sometimes you get name-brand goods, usually off-brand, a lot of the time the super-saver generic. It totally depends on the donations that keep the bank open.

Now, I don't know how much the bank pre-sorts out of the donations, but it is painfully obvious that some people use the food bank as a way to clean out their pantries of old, damaged, unused foodstuffs. Even after the pre-sorting, though, it's not all inside the "Best Used/Sold By" dates.

This month, we got a bit more overall than we had been getting; donations must have been up. (yay!)

Food Bank September 2013

Let me start with a list of what was, verifibly still "good" food - that is to say, still inside the date, not open, no signs of being off. :: We got a single package of bologna, a single package of hot dogs, five pounds of AP Flour, eight white hamburger buns, four boxes off-name mac and cheese, a box of spaghetti noodles, 2 single packets of Ramen (chicken flavor,) two boxes of noodles, a small canister of oats (steel cut, pleasant surprise,) six packets of cherry-lime diet drink powder, one bag Pinto Beans, two jars of peanut butter, a can of peas, two cans each of green beans, carrots, tomato sauce, and tomato soup, and a box of bran flakes cereal. There was also a flat of deli-made cupcakes that expired the day we got them.

We had some stuff that was not in its original packaging, but looked okay. :: Two sticks margarine, approx. two pounds cheddar flavored cheese shreddings (in a ziploc!), three half-sleeves of Ritz-style crackers, three individual-wrapped rice crispy treats, three packets Starbucks instant oats (no flavor,) and a loose Kroger sack of assorted pastries and cookies (about a dozen, in all.)

Now we get in to the fun stuff. The canned corn and grape jelly were missing their expiration dates, and the ten pound bag of bone-in chicken leg quarters was also missing it's exp date.. and looked to have partially thawed out, at some point. (ick.)

The rest was just plain out of expiration. The "Asian Blend" veggies that had started to rot in the bag were pretty bad. The two loaves of bread weren't growing anything, yet, so they were still edible. The Wheat Thins were out by over a month, but still fine. The ready rice from July.. not so much. The Jiffy mix from February, the box of hot chocolate from May, the PORK and beans can from May, and the black beans.. all out from early this year. The 40 oz can of yams from LAST year.. was pretty gross. There was also a half of a pudding cake that was out by a few weeks - half of that was dry, but the other half was still edible.

So, there you have it. That is what we got, for a month, from the food bank, for a family of five. (They also tossed in 16 oz laundry soap, and a couple other toiletries.) Some months we throw away more than we did, this time, some months a little less. It really depends on our luck of the draw.

I hope this write-up is helpful.
elialshadowpine: (Default)
Note: Naamah is one of my oldest, dearest friends (and both she and her husband are amazing writers), and if folks would be willing to toss a little into the hat, or simply to signal boost, that would be awesome. 

Originally posted by [personal profile] naamah_darling at Imperial Blood launches at Indiegogo!
It's that time again! And so soon. We must stop meeting like this. People will talk.

The Indiegogo campaign for Imperial Blood, our 9th Adventurotica novel, has launched! We have a little over a month to raise the funds to get us through to January.

This is the vampire novel I was talking about. It's gothic in the literary sense, somewhat lyrical, definitely going to be overwrought, and it's going to be full of kinky stuff. As usual, mostly het, but with M/M and F/F sex too. Yay, fucking!

What's it about?

Lucky you! You can has trailer!

Or you can read this summary:

From his dark palace at the northernmost part of the world, the dread Emperor Acrisius rules over his vast empire. Once every hundred years, he sends for a girl of royal lineage to be brought to his court. None are ever seen again.

When Sibylla is called, she must go, not knowing what will become of her. She fears the summons will mean her death, but she finds herself entangled in the ancient, complex life of the Dark Lord: a man who lives on blood, destroys all he touches, and yearns for a lost love he can never regain. He will seek to make her his in more ways than she can imagine, and if she is to remain herself, she must resist.

Garath, the young knight who loves her, dares everything to follow her into the north, willing to brave darkness, cold, and terror to save her. He falls into the hands of Minaraja, the Emperor's first bride, a creature of deathless cruelty and unending spite. Roused to hunger by his youth and beauty, she seeks to break his spirit with pleasure and terror.

Sibylla and Garath must find their own way through this dark place of intrigue, passion, and death unending.

See what I mean? We wanted it to be a sort of . . . well, here, this is what we said on the campaign page:

"Imperial Blood is a bit of a departure from our usual tales of derring-do and pornified sex. It is going to be a kind of dark fable, intentionally taking all the tropes of the Gothic Romance and turning them inside out while still maintaining the feel and atmosphere. It's going to be serious, kink-heavy, and fantastical. The essential, central idea was 'A Beauty and the Beast story where Beauty becomes the Beast.' It's also a fun chance to p*ss all over Twilight and 50 Shades of Grey. It will feature male-dom and fem-dom BDSM, and while most of it will be het, girls will get it on with girls and guys will get it on with guys. Something for everyone, as long as you're kind of a perv."

Sargon's writing, I'm kink-consulting (Am I qualified for that? Can I get that on a business card?) and helping with sex scenes. I've read the first few chapters and I am definitely liking the tone and the places it's already going. Bad places.

Also! For those of you not so much into porn, vampires, or . . . vampire porn.

I'm offering these glass and wire ornaments in black and silvertone, instead of bookmarks. They're available a la carte, if you don't want us mailing random piles of porn to your place, which is probably understandable if you have unneutered pets who might Get Ideas or something. They're $25, and may I point out they make lovely gifts and it's not too early to think about the coming holidays. Yulepocalypse. Christmas. Or whatever you call it. They even come gift boxed so you don't have to worry about wrapping them!


Yes, I'm offering ponies again! Goth vampire ponies with optional fairy wings. At a slightly lower price this time, but they won't have as many accessories as the steamponies (pics coming), and I'm trying to move two, not just one plus a random drawing (which was fun). They WILL be fabulous. I'm seeing gothy eye makeup, maybe some flowing ribbons and/or fishnets, and possibly some fairy wings because I'd like to do more of those. And there's the NSFW bondage toys version. Yeah. Willing to go there.

So, stop by, or spread the word:

Imperial Blood, it will be awesome.

Now, oh my god, I need to use the sleep!

X-posted from Dreamwidth. Comment count: comment count unavailable


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Nonny Blackthorne

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