Douchetastic Uber Exec Says Smear Campaigns Against Journalists Would be A-Okay

November 18th, 2014

It seems like taxi-industry disrupter Uber just can’t get a break this year.

First, one of Uber’s drivers-not-drivers runs down a 6-year-old girl while waiting for his next fare on New Year’s Eve, forcing Uber to publicly admit that, yeah, okay, they are our independent contractors but the emphasis is on independent here. Yeah, there’s a lot of dough at stake but, hello, boundaries. Because, hey, this is just about people reaching out to share their cars with people. And caring is cool not culpable.

And then there was that Uber guy with the hammer in September, who decides to go all whac-a-mole on some customer because he got drunk in the Uber guy’s taxi-not-taxi. Because sharing is caring unless its regurgitated sharing and then IT IS ON, BRO.

But now, gosh darn it, wily BuzzFeed reporter Ben Smith — who seems to have missed the memo that he was to be a reporter-not-reporter — got invited to a dinner that included Uber senior exec Emil Michael and no-names in the media infotainment complex like Arianna Huffington. In a news-not-news dinner statement to those he thought would be presumably down with his plan, Michael said that he thinks that its about high time that sharing-is-caring Uber got down to sharing the personal and damning details of the lives of journalists that question the company’s strategies, even saying that targeting their families would be fair game.

He even went so far as to call out one journalist in particular: the rhymes-with-witch PandoDaily editor-in-chief Sarah Lacy who dared — dared! — to suggest that Uber is moving along a highly despicable path, especially in regards to the  concerns of its female users. Like the ones who thought it might not be okay to use boob-shots and “ride with hot chicks!” to advertise the service. Or the one who thought maybe a partial refund might not be enough of a response for a two-hour abduction ride to a dark parking lot 20 miles from her home.

Realizing that — oops! — his words-not-words made BuzzFeed news and that –oops! — they might be used to conclude that Lacy was absolutely right, here’s what Michael felt compelled to say to the media in his defense:

“The remarks attributed to me at a private dinner do not reflect my actual views and have no relation to the company’s views or approach.”

Or, as Necgray translated for the comments section of Gawker’s Valleywag:

The detailed plans of hit-squad doxing I outlined to multiple conversation partners do not reflect what I might actually do in a given situation despite the fact that I spent time and effort to draw them up and the fact that I could very easily afford to go through with them. I regret the fact that people found out about me saying these horrible things and discovering that I am, in fact, a pile of human garbage.”

One of the results of all this, of course, is that sites like Gizmodo are running with alternatives to Uber articles. We all are, of course, crying tears* over the latest shitstorm of  controversy misunderstanding that this represents for Uber. For that we are all truly just like Michael: sorry-not-sorry.


* big ol’ crocodile tears

How to Pack Foods Fit for a Vegan Picnic

June 1st, 2014

This is for our Spreewald paddling trip (and for any random Internet person looking for recipes that could satisfy a mixed group). Trying to find good recipes that keep well in the heat and satisfy all of us — vegans, vegetarians, and meat eaters — isn’t as difficult as one might think.

Since everybody is okay with eating veggies, the vegan recipes are the lowest common denominator. If we all pitch in a vegan dish to share, no one should leave feeling unsatisfied. (Fellow meat-eaters, just pack your preferred dried meats and nibble furtively at the edge of the picnic blanket, okay? ;-))

I gathered up some vegan recipes for us to choose from. Many thanks to all the vegan food bloggers and chefs for providing excellent tips. My choices for us were for for recipes that are (1) easy to make, (2) visually exciting, and (3) likely to be fine when served at Spreewald-in-June picnic temperatures. The vegan bratwurst was a must-bookmark exception though. And although no American would consider PB&J worthy of a recipe, you Germans might welcome some tips.


Spicy Beet Salad with Horseradish

spicy beet salad

In a pinch, use refrigerated pre-cooked beets.

No-Cook Tabbouleh

no-cook vegan tabbouli

The grains “cook” overnight in the acid of tomato and lemon.
One of my personal favorites for summer eating!
Recipe via

Picnic Caviar

spicy corn bean red pepper salad

Rustic with corn, beans, paprika, and the kick of chilies!
Recipe via

Soba Noodle Salad with Ginger Peanut Dressing

vegan soba noodle salad

Pasta salad with the flair of East Asian spicing
Recipe via

Tofu Salad Sandwich

tofu salad sandwich

A tahini-based alternative to chicken salad.
Recipe via

Tomato Zucchini Pasta Salad

tomato zucchini pasta salad

A sherry-and-shallot vinaigrette sounds yummy!
Recipe from



Simply cut, raw vegetables don’t need a recipe,
but the pictures will stimulate your appetite.
Serving ideas via

Best Ever Broccoli Slaw

broccoli slaw

This popped up just today in my Facebook feed. Looks great!
Recipe via

Raw Pad Thai

raw vegan pad thai

Even as a meat-eater, I love this woman’s vegan food blog!
See her vegan taco salad video on YouTube.
Recipe via

Curried Quinoa Mango Salad

quinoa mango salad

A sweet treat if you can find ripe mangoes
Recipe via

Asparagus and Avocado Spring Rolls
with Citrus Dipping Sauce

vegan spring rolls with asparagus and avocado

Use green asparagus with the avocado for the visual affect!
Recipe via

Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwich (PB&J)

peanut butter and jelly sandwich

The staple item of so many American packed lunches, who really needs a recipe?
See for hacks on the PB&J.

Vegan Bratwurst

vegan bratwurst or mergez

Leave it to you Germans to figure out a way to do this!
Recipe in German via

Kale Slaw with Curried Almond Dressing

kale slaw vegan coleslaw

A cabbage-less twist on coleslaw.
Try it with the Brats!
Recipe via

Tell me what you’re packing!

Consent makes all the difference. All of it.

April 23rd, 2014

The Hunter couldn’t sleep and inadvertently woke me. He fell back to sleep and I fell into the Web.

This quote below and the one in the title above jumped out at me from one of the blogs I subscribe to.

It required adopting a new kind of feminism, I think—a BDSM- and kink-friendly feminism that is rooted in agency and consent, and that understands the difference between play and abuse.

Read the rest at Ask Mr Sexsmith: I struggle with my feminist beliefs and my bedroom preferences