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About My Blog.
Welcome! This is "Catatonic Digressions."
Most, if not all readers don't understand my blog's title. It's an old inside joke from a forum long gone. I was going to change it, but since it's been "confusing" for so long, I decided to leave it. Don't worry about what it means, the content of the blog is what is important.
Unfortunately, my blog isn't what I set out for it to be. A disturbed and manic online stalker and cyberbully has made it impossible for me to post about family, my son, life in my part of New York...so I stopped (for the most part), and I mostly reblog and repost what I feel is important, necessary or close to my heart. As for the stalking sociopath, she can go to hell for harassing me and my family since mid-2008. You can't scare me offline with a few lame threats and dozens of pages of defamation, abuse, depravity and libel. I'm bitchy like that. ;)
(Anyone who knows me knows I'm not actually a bitch, but let's allow this psychopath to think I'm a bitch to her blackened heart's content—it seems to make her feel she has some sort of control over me…and it does not.)
If you read a story and you feel moved in any way, comment. Comments are more than welcome.
Unlike those online who lie and hide behind fake photos and insanely fabricated stories, I'm a real person. I'm real and I don't pretend to be someone I'm not. After years of putting up with online abuse by manipulative, pathological liars, attention whores or narcissists, I've had it. Don't bother me with pathetic drama. I have no time for these types of people and their need to absorb others' time and attention.
Feel free to email me if you have a story or cause you would like shared, especially if it pertains to animal rights, liberation, veganism, animal welfare, health and well-being, geekery, Macs and computer dorkiness, music, lowbrow art, kitchy stuff, skateboards, the beach, swimming, diving, NYC, beading (it's my hobby), recipes (love to cook, especially if I made the recipe up myself!), VEGAN!, ALF, Sea Shepherd, Action for Animals, NIO, 269Life and/or anything you think I might enjoy or others might—you never know. It doesn't always have to be serious. Hilarious stories, local NY, funny videos or photos, photobombs (especially if they contain pets!)...I might be partially censored, but I'm not closed down!
Please, join Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, and follow them and The Barbi Twins on Twitter and Facebook.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture expects the number of mobile slaughterhouse units to grow and has provided financial assistance to at least four in the past half-decade
Photograph by: Scott Olson, Getty Images Files, Bloomberg
The six-person team gathers its equipment and heads out in heavy boots and tie-dyes, moving in for the kill.
Sharpened knives? Check. Scalder? Check. A "kill cone" to drain blood from upsidedown chickens? Check.
Towed behind a Ford F-250 pickup, Island Grown Initiative's mobile poultry slaughtering unit is on the move in Martha's Vineyard, ready to feed the growing appetite for locally raised products on the Massachusetts island best known as a vacation playground for the Kennedys.
"Without that unit, I would not be able to farm," said Jefferson Munroe, 34, who tends a small flock on the north side of the island that provides fresh chicken to local restaurants.
While fruit and vegetable growers can often handle their own harvesting needs, livestock requires slaughter - a messy business that could be unwelcome in affluent communities, where demand for locally produced food is highest. Enter Island Grown, a non-profit formed by Munroe and others that comes to the farm to slaughter, scald and pluck.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates 20 mobile units are in operation around the country. Units from Texas to Alaska butcher birds, cows, pigs and other animals as the market for locally produced food has grown from a beachhead of hippie co-ops and healthfood stores to Whole Foods Market Inc., Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Kroger Co.
"Mobile slaughter is crucial" to building local and regional food systems, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said in an interview. "It's still a relatively small piece of agriculture, but what I like about it is it offers local opportunities. You don't have to be a large operator, or a productionsized operator, to get into this business."
The department expects the number of units to grow and has provided financial assistance to at least four in the past half-decade, Vilsack said. Along with $17 million US in aid to the local-meat sector since 2009, the department has given advice on feasibility and technical assistance. Island Grown received $9,300 from the USDA for education and promotion.
The number of farmers engaged in local-foods sales rose 24 per cent to 144,530 in 2012 from a decade earlier, according to an agriculture department census released in May. That growth took place even as the total number of producers fell 0.9 per cent to 2.11 million in the same period.
A consolidation of agriculture has squeezed out smaller slaughterhouses that could profitably serve alternative producers. Bigger facilities, which offer economies of scale and advantages in waste handling, can be out of place in upscale areas such as Martha's Vineyard, 113 kilometres south of Boston, where seasonal visitors include the Obamas, singer James Taylor and moviemaker Spike Lee.
Farmers outside Seattle were early adopters of mobile slaughtering more than a decade ago. Roving units have processed lambs and goats in California, buffalo in Nebraska, elk and boar in Texas and turkeys, pheasants and quail in Kentucky. A unit in Nome, Alaska, slaughters reindeer.
In New York's Hudson Valley, mobile operators who slaughtered cows from 2010-12 are considering ways to restart, said Sara Grady, vice-president of programming for Glynwood, a nonprofit based in Cold Spring, N.Y., dedicated to rural preservation.
The unit stopped production after the farmer who ran it built a brick-and-mortar slaughterhouse - the goal of many mobile operators. The group is now taking proposals to resume operation in co-operation with restaurants and retailers who will cut and wrap the animals they kill, Grady said.
"If we're going to have a proliferation of independent, sustainable agriculture, we also have to have business people who have the skills to bring these products to market," she said.
Local-foods businesses tend to work best near cities, where pricey farmland and affluent consumers create incentives for high value rather than commodity-based farming, said Tom Cosgrove, vice-president for commercial lending with Farm Credit East, a nationwide agricultural lender.
As farms have grown larger and food processing has become more centralized, infrastructure needed to make small operations work has deteriorated, in some cases keeping a market from emerging, he said.
"You had less demand for smaller facilities," said Cosgrove. "You also had more concern with food safety," with larger businesses better able to absorb regulatory costs, he said.
The USDA inspects red meat and poultry sold across state borders. Food produced for consumption in state is typically inspected by that jurisdiction and must meet federal standards. Island Grown is visited by Massachusetts inspectors twice a year.
Vilsack said safety is a priority no matter the size of the operation. "One thing that could damage the potential of this market is any sort of food safety problem," he said.
Island Grown started in 2007 as a way to jump-start a local poultry industry on Martha's Vineyard - overcoming the same barriers alternative food entrepreneurs across the U.S. face in a food system that isn't designed for them.
"We don't fit very well with Tyson and ConAgra, but we have customers who are willing to pay for the meat," said Ali Berlow, a Martha's Vineyard resident who wrote a book on how to operate a mobile poultry slaughterhouse and helped design the local unit.
A group of us on Facebook helped to identify the abuser and the location in which the abuse took place. By recognizing where this apartment complex was, I was able to help the rest of the group nail down the exact numeric address. I knew the building was on Fulton Street in Brooklyn, but I was unsure of the address. Within hours, everything was posted and by the time I returned home from work, it was on the nightly news. The apathetic creep was arrested. Sadly, the cat had not been found... not that night. The story had a happy ending, though! King the cat was eventually found and he now has a wonderful home!
No video enhancing software was used on my end. I recognized the area from my old route to work!
King, the one-year-old male feline who survived a vicious kick in Brooklyn, was adopted by Chris Scordo of Manhattan, who by chance saw a recent story about him in theDaily News.
“I went to a diner for breakfast [June 8] and someone had left their Daily News behind,” explains Chris. “In the paper was a photo of this really handsome cat. I remembered seeing the earlier headline about him and thought the paper had been sitting around for a long time. I was sure the adoption was over. Then I saw the [paper’s publication] date and headed to the ASPCA.”
King, who suffered tissue injuries and bruising, was brought to the ASPCA’s Animal Hospital on May 7 by NYPD officers after being located and trapped by representatives of various animal welfare organizations, including the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals.
Chris, whose 20-year-old calico named Chandler had died six weeks earlier from cancer, had thought about getting another cat.
“I didn’t think I could replace her so soon, but I had a feeling when I saw King’s photograph,” he says. “He has a very expressive face—very bright-eyed. I liked him before I even met him.”
To Chris’ surprise, he was the first to arrive at the ASPCA and get the chance to interact with King. He met with Adi Hovav, a feline behavior counselor, who green-lighted the adoption after speaking at length with the life-long animal lover who has a soft spot for felines.
“I stayed up the whole night that first night—King needs a lot of engagement!” exclaims Chris, who works in the IT field, and often from home. “He acclimated right away after hiding for only an hour or so, and has been playing and exploring ever since. He’s a fun cat—and a bit of a tough guy. I suppose that’s how he survived.”
After first hearing King’s story, Chris was reluctant to watch the disturbing video (which immediately went viral) of King’s abuse, but did so after adopting him. “I felt like I had to witness what happened, he says. “That guy not only betrayed King’s trust, but what bothered me even more was that people were laughing. They should be held accountable, too.”
Despite his ordeal, King remains trusting and positive—“a real New Yorker,” according to Chris. King has taken to being held and is becoming more affectionate. “He was startled at first, but he now lets me hold him for short amounts of time,” Chris reports. The feisty feline also loves munching meatballs. “Maybe he’s part Italian?” Chris jokes.
As for King’s name, Chris says he thought about changing it to ‘Milo,’ “after the Greek strongman, or something macho. But he was already a minor celebrity, and I didn’t want to take that away from him.”
“I hope something good comes of this; maybe King can be a symbol of peace,” Chris adds. “I’ve seen the cruelty people can inflict on animals and I know he, like me, would want the laws stiffened.”
Chris promises to give King the best life he can. “I was amazed at how many people were involved in finding him and caring for him,” he says. “He’ll never suffer again. He’ll have a heated bed in the winter, the best food and medical care, all the toys he wants, and plenty of love and affection.”
In other words, a life fit for a king.
The original incident:
King the cat recovers after being kicked 20 feet by Brooklyn man
The 1-year-old cat is currently recovering at the ASPCA Animal Hospital after surviving a brutal kick in the stomach by a 21-year-old Brooklyn man. The ASPCA says King is not yet ready for adoption.
Cops Arrest Brooklyn Man For Kicking Poor Kitten In Distressing Video
A 21-year-old sociopath-in-training was arrested yesterday for kicking a kitten. And the police caught up with him because the video—which shows Andre Robinson grinning like a tough guy (and his friends laughing hysterically)—was posted on Facebook.
Last Friday, the footage was posted on On The Real, with the message, "This is NEVER okay to do. Please share; hopefully somebody will recognize this fool."
Apparently viewers of the video "used video enhancing software to blow up the scene" which led cops to find the building, 1831 Fulton Street at the Breevort Houses. Police then recognized Robinson, who has prior arrests includingknifepoint robbery. The Daily News reports that he admitted to the cops that he was the kicker: "Cops said Robinson had been outside waiting for a food delivery when the incident happened. He turned to his friends and said, 'Watch this,' according to cops. One of his friends started recording with his phone as Robinson set his trap for the cat."
The video shows Robinson kicking the cat very hard; "According to the arrest report, the cat flew about 20 feet — and a veterinarian confirmed to cops the brutal blow likely caused serious injury," per the Daily News. It's unclear where the cat is now, but police are looking for it.
A police source told the Post, “People who saw (the video) were really disturbed by it.” Robinson was charged with aggravated animal cruelty.
However, Robinson's mother insisted he was not a bad person, "He had to be high on something. It’s very out of his character. He had to be high to do what he did. This isn’t him... He loves animals. He loved his cats, he had dogs, he always loved them."