First Steps in Veganism

Diary 4/29 to 4/30/22: Protein powder brands; Misfits Market; Nog and Hemlock Club; Noam Chomsky on Truthout, and Orwell; vegan cookbooks; shopping at Lassens; tomorrow’s breakfast; Olivia; NOTHING about Mckenna Grace.

“The Death of Socrates” by Jacques-Louis David, 1787

Copyright 2022 (text only) by Alan Carl Nicoll
All Rights Reserved

{4/29/22} Continued.

I just want to buy some vegan protein powder in Bakersfield.  Turns out it’s not easy, or maybe it is:  I can go to Lassen’s and plunk down thirty or forty bucks for a little jar.  I want to make an informed decision, so I ended up at to get comparisons of various vegan protein powders, and noted some recommendations:  Garden of Life, KOS Organic, Naked Pea Premium, and Orgain Simple.  Then I went to and wrote down Transparent Lab, Ladder, Performance Lab Sport, and Naked Pea (again), and found further down the list, again, Garden of Life and Orgain.  So I go to the Lassens web site and find some prices, but much of what I’m looking for isn’t there.  Then I look for “vegan grocery store” in Bakersfield and find Trader Joe’s, Wal-Mart…!  Looking for farmer’s markets, I finally arrive at, a subscription service, which sounds like a good idea if I can work it out.  Other farmers markets in Bakersfield are proving to be problematic:  very limited hours, limited bus service.

I think I’ll hold off on Misfits until I’m more committed to this vegan diet.  I may want to continue as a vegetarian (plus fish)—going vegan is getting complicated and I’m not even started yet.  But Misfits apparently works with local farmers, and thus should be good on any number of grounds.

In looking for reviews of Misfits, I found a ton, all very negative, calling it a scam and saying you’re buying garbage (rotten vegetables, bugs, dirt, not what you wanted, ad nauseam).  Too bad.  I’ve already deleted their web site from my bookmarks; unfortunately, I didn’t bookmark the review site.

I want to start by going to Lassens with Nog, both for advice and for “moral support.”  But he has complicated my life by bailing on Saturday mornings (i.e., Hemlock Club) and wanting to meet at Panera on Sundays—when Lassens is closed.  Perhaps I’ll go there and buy some protein powder, honey, and some fruit and veg so I can start having smoothies of my own design.  I can do that Saturday, which will give me a good reason to go to Panera (the Club being sorta defunct for now).  The point is to get started without just living on granola bars, Cheetos, bananas, a protein shake, and chocolate chip cookies (approximately today’s menu).  I’m fairly desperate because I ran out of eggs yesterday and am avoiding buying any more.

Been browsing Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and Thriftbooks sites, plus a rated list, of smoothie cookbooks.  Put one in the cart at Thriftbooks, The Healthy Smoothie Bible by Brock, which has a lot of nutrition information plus some recipes, all for about six bucks for a good used copy.  I wanted to get a second book, but Thriftbooks shut down at 10:00 pm my time, so, tomorrow.


New interview of Noam Chomsky on Truthout, about disinformation and propaganda surrounding the Ukraine war.  I haven’t taken time to read it yet, but I will.  I got sidetracked by a mention in the interview of an “unpublished” preface by Orwell to Animal Farm.  I’ve so far been unable to locate the full text online; a Christian website has “excerpts.”

Went to Barnes & Noble on my way to the Hemlock Club today.  Spent $50 buying two veganism cookbooks, Nava Atlas:  5-Ingredient Vegan and “Mendocino Press”:  The Smoothie Recipe Book.  The latter has no named author, which might have made me change my mind if I’d noticed that fact before I bought it, but it was only ten bucks.  I’ll review these as I get to them.

Photo by Anna Tis on

Also went to Lassens and spent $52 for protein powder and assorted groceries.  The pp is Garden of Life “Raw Organic Meal organic shake and meal replacement.”  I went for the “raw organic meal” rather than their other possibilities after a discussion with Nog this morning.  Garden of Life was the top recommendation from the web site I looked at; I didn’t save the URL, alas.  [From yesterday’s entry, looks like it was]  As it happened, the item was on sale and a representative in the store gave me a $3 off coupon, so the nominal price of $34.99 was reduced to $17.99.  This was rare good fortune.  After wandering around for a while, I went back to switch the 17.9 oz package I had with the larger package, then I noticed that it was chocolate flavored.  Since I was planning to design my own smoothies as a breakfast replacement for cheese and eggs, I had in mind an unflavored protein powder, so I decided to stay with the package I had.  Fourteen servings.

The other items I bought included:  Califia almond milk, raw spinach, cilantro, local honey, bananas, strawberries, and blackberries.  I also got a frozen loaf of Dave’s Killer Bread, “Good Seed,” because I saw a price sticker for $4.99, almost a dollar less than I’ve been paying at Food Maxx, but it turns out I was charged $6.99, or a dollar more than I’ve been paying.  Grr.  The almond milk was $2.99, reduced from $4.69—I didn’t check for an expiration date, so I could end up getting burned there, too.  I don’t know what my hurry was.

Photo by meo on

Local honey is supposed to be good at preventing disease.  Okaaay.  It’s also “raw and unfiltered,” so there could be a dead bee in it or something, I suppose.

The berries were pricey at $5.99, but that’s how it goes for organic.  Lassens claims not to sell anything else.

Nothing in the above should be taken as a recommendation, I’m just getting started here and have not tasted anything yet.  Tomorrow’s breakfast will be a learning experience.  I plan to start with a spinach-cilantro-fruit-almond milk smoothie.  Don’t know how cilantro will go with “milk.”  I’ll go light at first.  I like cilantro as an ingredient in my scrambled eggs.  I plan not to buy any more eggs, cheese, yogurt, etc. [I do plan to continue eating fish.]

At Panera Bread I had a peach-blueberry smoothie for almost $6.  It wasn’t bad, a little more icy than would be my choice.  I soon found that I wanted something to chew on, and went for a small bag of chocolate chip cookies at $5.99.  Ouch.

Peanut showed up around 11:30 I think.  We talked some and she gave me a string of wooden beads in a handmade cloth bag.  I think this was because I gave her a rather nice folding fan a few weeks back.  Hadn’t seen her for a month.

The crushing news, however, is that Olivia is leaving P.B.  She is the only employee there who ever sat down with the Hemlock Club.  She is twentyish and intelligent.  And pretty.  Gotta wonder what she sees in us.  Anyway, she has a new job doing something with handicapped kids, which relates to her course of study en route to a Ph.D. I think.  She said she would check in with us from time to time, but of course one never knows whether to believe such intentions.

Also bought a cheap sudoku book at B&N and have already worked three and watched an episode of The Simpsons that I hadn’t previously seen, and two of Family Guy.  And I took a nap.  Exciting life I lead.

Copyright 2022 (text only) by Alan Carl Nicoll
All Rights Reserved

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s