Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Pretty Close

Thanks to all of you who made suggestions for improving my Pumpkin Cheesecake Oatmeal. I'm still trying to perfect the recipe, but I am much closer than yesterday!

Pumpkin Cheesecake Oatmeal
Draft #2

1/3 cup dry oats
1/4 cup canned pumpkin
1 small banana (sliced)
1/8 cup water
2 tbsp whipped cream cheese
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp sugar-free maple syrup
shake of cinnamon and nutmeg

Mix well, cook in microwave for 2 minutes.

The consistency is still very "cheesecake-like," but the flavor still isn't quite right. The whipped cream cheese definitely gave it a "cheesy" taste this time, but I still think it needs to be sweeter. I debated adding brown sugar or honey or more maple syrup, but I didn't want to turn my breakfast into a sugary dessert! (Although, this recipe is a great start to an interesting dessert!) All I know is, as a bowl of breakfast oatmeal, this combo is delicious! I topped today's bowl with a few raisins for some added chew and sweetness.

Question of the Day

My question of the day is more of a gripe than a question, but as always, I'd love to encourage some conversation on the topic.

, on my way into work this morning, a woman walking in front of me finished her cigarette and tossed it on the sidewalk. (Littering is a huge pet peeve of mine!) Not even 30 seconds later, she pops a piece of gum into her mouth, and throws the wrapper on the ground too! I wanted to say something to her about littering, but I didn't know how to go about it. I thought about picking up her trash myself, but I was too annoyed and really didn't want to touch her nasty cigarette butt. Maybe I should just mind my own business, but it is upsetting to see this happen. What do you do when you see someone litter? What do you think I should have done?


VeggieGirl said...

Sounds like your Pumpkin Cheesecake Oatmeal is almost perfect!! Yum! :0)

Hmm, this is tough - it never works to sound like preacher, and tell others what to do; but when it comes to littering, you could always say (in a nice tone), "You know, the trash can is just over there - no need to throw your trash on the ground."

c said...

Wow, I am truly not sure what I would say, if anything in that situation. Littering bugs me too so I will be interested in others responses.

Sarah said...

I always feel strange confronting people, so I would probably either pick it up (then promptly wash my hands) and remind myself and my friends to be more conscious of littering to try and offset people like her. There are some places where you can report a litterer (usually this is when they are in a car and you can turn in their license plate #) but I'm not sure how you would go about doing that when you don't even know the person. I feel your pain though!

arielle said...

Oh man, that drives me crazy! I never say anything, cause I'm a wimp, but I always want to be like,"Excuse me, you dropped something." I've seen people on the subway here throw soda bottles and fast food bags under their seats like it's nothing. I once saw a man tear up a bunch of pieces of paper and scatter the little pieces all over the platform. I mean, what do their houses look like? It's amazing.

Anusce said...

I totally understand how you felt!
It drives me crazy too!
You know, in Europe it would have been different or at least where I am from (Italy) you can definetely confront the person because there is a sense of community watch, where everyone is allowed to educate others when it comes to common sense.
Here in the states, there is a greater individualist attitude which seems to indicate to other that they can do whatever they can.
One time, I was in the same situation. I bent down, picked up the trash and tossed it while the person who had thrown it on the ground watched. I guess, I was trying to lead by example!


Quinn said...

It's such a tough position. I can't stand it, but I agree with Arielle's "Excuse me you dropped something." It gets the point across but not in a confrontational way. However, I think people are too lax these days that they will "say the wrong thing." As embarrassing as this is, my mom will correct strangers' children if they are acting inappropriately. That's how the world used to be! If someone littered, "Hey, pick that up." Maybe we need to embrace it again.

And contrarily, the other day while waiting for the bus, a homeless man actually picked up a half of a cigarette butt --- before you say "awww he was helping the environment" --- he lit it, and smoked it. VOM!

Caitlin said...

ooo thats hard. people can be kind of nuts and you don't want them to freak out. i like arielle's idea... i would've chased her down with the cig butt and wrapper and said really sweetly "excuse me, you dropped something!" and when she reached out her hand, i'd drop the trash in her palm. LOL!

Denise said...

It happened to me yesterday! Well, it happens all the time... This guy was walking in front of me and I just saw the chocolate wrapping fall behind him. I walked a little faster, and asked him:'Hey, how can you just throw your chocolate wrapping on the ground like that?' With a very angry face! He just gave me a uh... mmm... and went back to pick it up. It's a very common thing around here, and I'm a real activist when it comes to alerting people that they are littering! J is a little more polite and tells them: Oh I think you dropped something! They look and see it's trash! Sometimes they pick it up, other they totally ignore... piggies!

One Food Guy said...

Hi Tina, I think you definitely should have said something to that litterbug!

A simple, "Excuse me, I think you dropped your gum wrapper on the ground."

Or "Excuse me, what makes you think it's okay to throw your trash on the ground?"

Or "Excuse me, you dropped some trash. Someone else is going to have to pick that up eventually, so why don't you go back to pick it up and throw it out where it belongs."

Or "Since when is the sidewalk your personal trash can. People like you make me sick, with your disgusting habit and your entitled attitude. Asshole!"

Meg said...

I think there is a cheesecake flavor of philedelphia cream cheese. Maybe that will help in the recipe!!!! or Maybe a tbsp or two of Jello Instant Pudding in cheesecake flavor.

Royal said...

Totally agreeing with One Food Guy, I would have definitely said something along the lines of "I think you dropped your gum wrapper". Of course there is the whole confrontation thing so it was probably in your best judgment not to say anything, however I probably would have picked it up...maybe not the cigarette but the paper, I have a habit of always picking up trash as Im walking. It is SO annoying when people mindlessly do things like that. Grrr.

sweetpotato said...

I agree with VeggieGirl's response to the litter. It upsets me so much when people litter! I don't know how someone can be so inconsiderate to their environment.

Jordan said...

That's a hard one. You could just pick it up, but that's not going to really stop her from doing it in the future. I don't think causing a confrontation would help anything, but as stated above, I think a simple "Hey, you dropped your gum wrapper" would suffice. Maybe even if you picked it up and handed it to her while saying that, ha.

If I were her, I'd be embarrassed and probably try to play it off like it was an accident. Also, in the future, I would definitely think twice before littering again.

The other suggestions above are almost sure to cause a confrontation, so I would probably be as nice as possible about it.

Betsy said...

maybe a little allspice & cloves?? just a little. and possibly a dash of ground ginger...

fleur said...

The Pumpkin Cheesecake Oatmeal looks delicious! Will have to try making that soon.

As for littering, it's always tough. I would probably just pick the stuff up and put it in the nearest bin, but that's because I'm a pushover and would rather avoid conflict. At least that way the street stays clean though.

HangryPants said...

Your oatmeal sounds so good, but I would go back to the ricotta! Personal prefernce for my cheese cake.

I get so mad when I see people litter. I usuaully just pick it up because I am too shy to say anything, but really it's so rude and inconsiderate.

Lori said...

Your question and the responses definitely got me thinking about how disliked littering is in the US. I hate it to.

However, living abroad is such a different experience. In Brazil they litter all the time and think nothing of it. An US expat friend of mine living in Chile blogs for Tonic News Network and just posted about the littering issue there yesterday.

She says she has a friend that picks up people's cig butts and gives them back to them. I'm not quite that outgoing. I just concentrate on myself and use my actions to serve as an example. It is tough to keep my mouth shut though.

Raven said...

This is a hard question and I am glade that you asked for advice before too because the last thing you would want is for that situation to get out of hand if the person where to get offended. I feel the same about running water in the bathroom when people just leave it on while brushing their teeth or soaping up their hands, so I know how you feel. Every situation is different, I mean if the person looks a little crazy per say than I wouldn't say anything. But maybe if it was someone your age, or that you would feel conformable confronting then maybe you could mention something.
Another thing you could do is inform your friends and family about littering if you see them, or someone else doing it. You know what they say everyone is connected by 6 people so who knows the message about littering might actually get back to that woman!

JavaChick said...

Funny you should ask that question. I don't often see people littering, but not long ago I was walking down the sidewalk and there was a woman walking towards me smoking. She finished and just tossed her cigarette butt on the side walk. It shocked me - don't know why, it's not like I never see cigarette butts on the ground...But I guess it was the casual attitude about it. And there are garbage cans at regular intervals along the street!

Anyway, I didn't say anything, but our eyes met and the woman got this look on her face like she just realized what she had just done, and that she had been caught doing it.

Not that I imagine it will make any difference. Sad, isn't it?

Kayla said...

I agree littering is so annoying and disrespectful!!! One time my best friend and I were driving behind someone who blatantly threw his empty soda can out the window. We pulled over, picked it up, and then followed him until he stopped and we got out handing him the soda can and saying "Excuse me sir, but I believe you dropped this." Yes a bit extreme, but he was very embarrassed and who knows maybe after that, that taught him a lesson to never litter!

Daphne said...

You know, it's funny; this sort of reminds me of one of my favorite breakfasts (recently inspired by reading your blug): bulgur with a skim milk and vanilla hemp milk blend, pumpkin, cinnamon, a banana, and sliced almonds - and sometimes a few raisins on top. Maybe I'll add a bit of ricotta or neufchatel sometime!

Anne P said...

ugh i get so pissed when i see people littering. especially cigarettes. i feel like people don't think of cigarettes as littering... for some reason it's almost become acceptable for people to litter cigarettes, which is so not cool. i like everyone's idea about saying "i think you dropped your gum wrapper" and then making them feel stupid without preaching, haha.

Simple and Divine said...

OMG I haaaate that too! I'm def one of those people that gets SO annoyed but doesn't ever know how to go about confronting random people... This is a tough one! What if you just go, "Excuse me, ma'am, you dropped something"? haha

Sammie said...

I live on a very busy road and my front law is FULL of cig. butts, candy wrappers, paper cups, soda bottles, news papers - the trash is endless. One time I saw the dude who tosses the recycling into the truck miss the bin and a telephone book landed on the side of the road which was covered in nasty dirty snow. He actually kicked the book off the street into my neighbors yard. Some people really don't care!! I actually called the Recycling Company and told them to come back and pick it up - why do I pay so much money per year for my trash/rec.for it to land in my yard and make disgusting mess. Oh, and your oatmeal looks great.

mangotriathlete said...

I struggle with the same about people who litter... usually I just say politely "Oh, excuse me, I think you dropped something." If its something like a plastic waterbottle, I might pick it up and drop it in the recycling if there's one nearby (they have some on the streets near parks and such here). But yeah, it annoys me.

Glad your oats are coming along.... I'm a vegan, so think is a guess, but would a bit of ricotta cheese make a difference?

sweetsandsweats said...

Depending on the situation (person, location, etc) I usually will say something in passing. “You know, you could have put that in the trash” or “Did you really need to throw your trash on the ground”. And then keep on going. I don’t really want to get into a conversation about littering…I think it is the same as smoking. These people obviously already know it is bad and still do it. I don’t think I will exactly change them but I do feel pretty comfortable letting them know that it does bother me.