Scott Damiano

Nov 252009

tofurkey-main_FullThese days I find myself holding back more and more when it comes to discussing my eating habits. Those who have read my bio know that I am a vegetarian. I would be vegan, but I from time to time partake in the occasional cheese product (such as feta and goat cheese) or a product that has milk or egg as an additive, vs a main ingredient (some MorningStar products for example). I have also stated in a previous article my reasons for this lifestyle.

However I don’t talk about it much these days as I somehow pull aggro no matter how the subject comes up. I can be very passive and matter of fact and not go into any detail or I can give the full list of reasons, but somehow it seems to hit a sore spot with a lot of people. The idea of giving up meat for some people is not only difficult to imagine, but downright insulting it seems.

Case in point: this article from CNN. Personally I thought the article was great. Notice how many times they mentioned spices? Some of the menu options they mentioned didn’t even occur to me as I would in previous years just pick through sides, figuring I was the one with the “weird” eating habits so I didn’t expect my family to change the menu for just one person. This year is different as my girlfriend wants to try out a Tofurkey and see if it holds up, should be interesting seeing as I have never had one (be expecting a review).

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Nov 242009

picardsmallWhere have I been you may ask? Well, I got out of habit. Had some issues at home, moved, unpacked, set up the new place, then there was a busy month or so…next thing I knew I had been away from ShrinkGeek for months. So why is it so hard to come back?

The quick answer is: habit. I am out of the habit of pulling down some health information from the intartubes that may be of interest to the geek community, writing it up, formatting it, and posting it. When I was in the habit I would always be on the lookout for something to post and would be rearing to go on a new article. But once I got out of the habit I found it very hard to get back in. Would start up an article, lose my direction, and put it on the back burner.

So while trying to figure out how to jump back in I started thinking about habits in general. How do you start/end one? For myself, something big needs to happen to end one, such as moving, to take me out of my routine. Starting it is a bit harder as in many situations there is no sense of urgency. Then I started thinking about the troubles I have had getting a steady workout routine and diet in place.

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Jul 292009

meandtk2Some know her as that, the raw super hero, Creature, from Who Wants To Be A Superhero on SciFi (aka SyFy). Some know her as one half of a knife throwing act with Jack Dagger: The King of Fling. Or perhaps her whip work, modeling, acting (still see her from time to time on those Progressive commercials with the gremlins), dancing, stilt-walking, fire-poi spinning, or environmental activism work (talk about a Jack Jane of all trades, and a ton of links I just shot at ya). Me, I know her as Tonya Kay, aka TK, and have had the pleasure of getting to know her over the past two years or so.

Years back when I first gave up eating meat, and was close to giving up the milk/egg products, my wife at the time came across Tonya’s website when looking up vegan and raw vegan information. It had been years since I saw Who Wants To Be A Superhero but I remembered the character. I started chatting with her and other “Gardeners” on her message board over a few months. Eventually she was in town for FXCon 2008 and I made sure to take the opportunity to meet her in person.

Of course I felt like a stalker though. I mean, I know her online and all but not IRL. Also, she was there for work reasons. But I wanted to at least stop by and say hello, as well as check out the floor that weekend and see what the con had to offer.

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Jul 222009
The Doctor Approves

The Doctor Approves

That’s what Dr. Ryuta Kawashima asked me the last time I logged into Brain Age since it had been a while since I played. I enjoy the game, but kind of fell out of it when I scored an age of 20. I still think I held onto my improvement in math skills though and have been meaning to get around to buying Brain Age 2.

Before Brain Age, or similar games, kids have been trying to convince their parents that playing video games was actually helping them in other ways. Such as memorization, pattern recognition, hand-to-eye coordination, etc. Usually just with the intent to be allowed to play for a few minutes more before bedtime though. However there may be some truth to it after all.

According to an article earlier this month on, research has been done, and will continue to be thanks to some recently approved grants, in the area of the effects of gaming on the minds of the elderly.

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Jul 152009

soylentmixA friend of mine laughs when she hears me mention going to Rollin’ Oats to get a “Meatless Meatball Sub”. She pictures a sub with marinara sauce and soy cheese on it. Har har. But it is soy balls (which also gets a laugh) instead of meatballs. The meal works because, like meatballs containing meat, there are tons of spices and various other flavorings making it quite a tasty meal.

Vegetarian/vegan options for replacing meat can be quite interesting. Some are made to taste as close to what they are replacing and some are made to be a unique product of their own which, while not tasting anything like they are meant to replace, have an interesting and delicious taste none the less.

One interesting fact I came across recently was that the meatless options, that are made to taste like the meat they are replacing, in many cases don’t have many actual vegetables in them. Usually it is more soy protein and wheat whereas in other options, that don’t try to hide the fact that they are meatless, you can actually see the vegetables in them.

This was brought to my attention as possible focus for this article via a posting on HealthDay which had some interesting tidbits to add as well as advice.

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