photo cred Cat Yup, this is my brother Simmah. I love him. He is kind, gentle, outrageously funny, selfless, extraordinarily smart, talented and beautiful, he knows everything about just about everything and above all is the most supportive person I know. He is allergic to milk, eggs, seafood and is gluten intolerant. He also avoids consuming any and all animal products. Essentially, he’s vegan not for any political reason but because his body fights against the machine.  If he accidentally eats something that has any of the above ingredients it does him significant damage. Eating out is a risk. Eating in general has to be scrutinized and ingredients triple checked before consumption. This is not a lifestyle choice this is his reality. Try taking a different approach to cooking and eating. Try a gluten free dish. Experiment with a vegan dish. You'll find that it's dead easy to do and people in your life that have dietary concerns will love you for it.

I just so happened to have celebrated a milestone birthday and thought a) I'm celebrating this mutha with an old-school style potluck party and b) I do NOT want to eat crap at said celebration. So I designed the invite and started a Google Doc so that everyone could signup and see what everyone else was bringing.  Besides the drawback of Google docs only working for peeps with Gmail accounts, the party was a raging success. The Invite We had people with numerous food aversions & allergies so when all the food came out there was a collective sigh of relief.  My brother Simmah (allergic to all animal byproducts & gluten)  and another dear friend commented that this was the first party that they could actually eat other dishes than the ones they specifically made.  The result was the most amazing array of gorgeous food I have ever seen at a party and Lisa and I (and it seems everyone else at the party) were over the moon. Let's change how we look at gatherings that revolve around eating. People are way more receptive than you think to try something different. So invite some people over and potluck that thing up.  You'll be surprised and elated on what arrives on your table.   We were.