Sunday, February 17, 2008

Jill is Queen, and How I Travel.

Missing my facial hair, but LOVING the food.

So...Dawn and I made the trek on the R train out to Brooklyn on Friday
night to hear if all the fuss about Jill's Cafe was true.


We were amazed at the high level of quality.
Not only of the food, but of the ambiance, the music,
the service, and the VERY reasonable prices.
I have to say that its worth the 15 min subway ride out
to Brooklyn for a meal. Even just for dessert.

This picture does these fine culinary delights NO justice.
This was by far the best carrot cake I have ever had.
The Hazelnut Torte was divine, and the pecan cup was perfection.

I have never met Ms. Pettijohn,
but I must send my gratitude to her for
setting up such a fine establishment and for
charging such fair prices.

Do yourself a favor and visit this wonderful spot.
Its cozy, and usually quiet. A perfect place to actually have
a conversation over your food instead of having to basically
yell like at other raw restaurants these days.

Sometimes places can get too popular....know what I mean?


To totally digress, let me give a quick tip about my travels.
Or more I can do them more than the average bear.

A reader asked me how I can afford to travel.

Now, true...I am single, but I dont really credit that to my travels.
How do I do it? I OWN NO CAR.

Think about how much you spend on a car every month.
I spend $76 total on subway/bus fares.
So lets say instead of spending $600 a month, I spend $76.
Lets put $500 a month in a jar, EVERY MONTH...
and every 4 months or so I could go on a GREAT vacation.

This basically is aimed towards young people without kids. but with cars.
Is there some way that you can structure your life so that you dont
need a car to get things done? Could you borrow a car from
a friend once a week to do all of your grocery shopping?
Could you get a bike? Could you live in a city?

$500 a month...straight into the travel fund...think about it.
Dont be stuck in the car paradigm if you dont have to be.
There are so many possibilities in which to live our lives.

Especially if you are single and could really do this
if you actually desired it. You could have 3-4 MAJOR
vacations every year without fail...and no car drama.

Nuff said...? Let me the comments.

When you travel, remember that a foreign country is not designed to make you comfortable.
It is designed to make its own people comfortable.

Clifton Fadiman (1904 - 1999)


Gaia said...

I like your economic breakdown for not having a car. I boycott cars for other reasons. I refuse to have "driving a car" be what people do to get around. I ride a trek, unless it's raining and then I just walk, or I've even inner-city hitchhiked! I'm amazed at how many people are shocked that I don't have a car. Cars are just oily noisy polluters anyway. I was in Hawaii last spring for the first time, and I saw a GEM in a parking lot in Lihue. Maybe these kind of cars will catch on, since bikes don't seem to be!

Kyle said...

I love the idea, and I hope that one day I can live in an area where not having a car would be so simple : (
I HAVE to take a car to get to school - I've checked for busroutes and they're non-existant(because it's cross county).
Excepting school I could CERTAINLY walk or bike more places, or hitch a ride with some friends. Good perspective on that Anthony!

Anthony said...

Yeah its funny...the more you actually care for the earth, the more money you save. I really dont care for cars anymore...and I wish we could construct a society where we could always be mobile and not pollute. Its really up to us.

The internal combustion engine is pretty much Satan in a metal box. We have to improve right now...

Better for the Earth,
Better for our Bodies,
Better for our Wallets.


wyldegirl said...

have you read 'how to live well without owning a car' by Chris Balish??
completely inspiring and realistic, it was the tipping point that made me decide to forego getting another vehicle when my lovely outback decided to kick it in december. i'm incredibly happy without a vehicle, there are so many ways around it, even not living in a city yet. . .
the money saved, headaches averted, peace of mind. . . i aspire to be the next 'no impact man' (well in my case- girl)

yup- i'ts just better all around, and not a coincidence! Balish says 'get more mileage out of life' without one and i think that's a fairly perfect way of putting it.

i just heard about jill's cafe. . . glad to hear such a glowing review and i've been on a yellow + orange food kick lately (feeding the corresponding and currently weaker chakras, intuitively) and that carrot cake struck a chord-
it'll be my next undehydrated and nut-free project. . . wish me luck!

city= soon!!
xx jenny

mandy said...

i do have a car, but it certainly doesn't cost me $600 a month. It's paid for, I hardly use it, and the insurance is like $50 a YEAR. It pretty much sits there unless I want to get out of town, in which case, it is VERY useful.

It's not that I disagree about pollution and fossil fuel consumption, and I love bike riding and public transit in the city, but I typically travel outside the city once a month or so, which would not be possible without my car.

Disa said...

Ah-car free. I find myself neither single or childless. But would love to get rid of my car. I live literally right around the corner from my work which happens to be the same place where my son has day care. I use to walk to work everyday, and want to get in the habit of doing it again. When I use to, I would find myself not using my car till the weekend. I would think why am I spending so much money on this thing when I don't need it. But I have to remember about those days when it is raining here in CA and pushing the little one in a stroller isn't too smart. I am also grateful for the fact that I can make the drive down to Santa Monica anytime I want. Hopefully one day when my son grows up I to will be able to enjoy a car-free life.

Bella said...

I used to live in Manhattan and had no car and LOVED it. I now live in New England and although I don't use it very often (my work studio is in my house), I do have a car. I must say living in New England WITH a car is far, far less expensive than living in a city without a car. Not only that, but it's so much healthier to not be in the city! The air quality is infinitely better, there are woods near me, the rocky ocean shore, deer, foxes, and wild turkey walk through my yard sometimes!

So... outside of the city equals... better air for me, cheaper living, close to nature, but I have to use a car once in a while. Seems like a pretty good trade-off.

If you need a car, I say buy a reasonably-sized, second-hand car. Take good care of it, and only use it when you need to, and the expense of it shouldn't detract from higher priorities in your life... like traveling. PLUS, I use my car once in a while to "travel" right here in New England. I drive to the most beautiful mountains, coastlines, and forests, and go hiking, explore in the woods, and sometimes camp for a few days. Sometimes you don't have to travel far to discover the beauty of the earth, learn more about yourself, and see new incredible sights. My car is good to me, and I make sure to use it sparingly and resourcefully.


Anonymous said...

Hey Anthony,

That's cool that there seems to be so many raw food restaurants in your neck of the woods (or at least a subway ride away).

If you're ever in San Diego, Cilantro Live! is pretty good! :)

Also, speaking of San Diego, since you like L.A./Santa Monica so much I think you'd really like Encinitas. La Jolla and Del Mar are really beautiful, but I find the people of Encinitas really down to earth. Most anyway.

I also want to say that I went back and watched a few videos that you did (one's I missed or didn't have time to watch) and your laugh is contagious. You had me giggling! So cute! :) Take care!


raw by default said...

I'm not sure that everyone living in cities would be such a great thing, either. Sure, there might be fewer cars... but there would be a lot more people crowded into a small space. That's not great for the environment (or quality of life), either. I think part of the solution is going to come from different types of cars that don't belch as much CO2 into the atmosphere. And getting people out of their useless minivans and SUVs would be a big help, too. The woman next door drives her children to school in a minivan... even though the school is so close you can hear the kids playing at recess. I wouldn't mind seeing a (large) tax on minivans and SUVs.

Love the plaid pants photo. :)

tash said...

I love how outgoing you are, Anthony. I just had to comment on that. Your energy is very healthy. It seems that you don't ever meet a stranger. (Of course, I believe that in all reality, no one ever really does.) But that is wonderful. I know not everyone in this world feels so open. I'm glad you do. I was, once upon a time, way back in the day, painfully shy, but am so communicative I recognize this deeply. Just sayin', for what it's worth.
:0) Namaste~!

A said...

Very pertinent post Anthony! You know that national business plan competition that I was telling you about....well...remember my idea which is a natural organic fast food eatery where we source everything locally in order to help transform the industrialized food system while creating a “triple top line” being socially, environmentally, and health conscious.

My business has many facets but stems from the simple desire to help people hold their energy—by the quality of thoughts that you hold and “you are what you eat.” ((On a side note there is also a raw grab and go component—very inclusive…get people in the door and start moving them up the food chain))........

.....Any ways the competition was sponsored by Wal Mart….our arch enemy of course….talk about being in the belly of the beast!!! I wanted to see what all goes down there…..look them in the eyes...see their souls?

I ended up getting second place…...guess who won…...((a really great group of young people))…...who are starting a green cab company. I don’t believe in hybrids because the energy that it takes to mine the copper for the battery….ship the copper….make the wire…make the battery…make the car….ship the Toyota Prius from Japan to the US….hey I might as well jump in my Hummer with all my hommies.

The VERY NEAR future revolves around the food industry (!!Anthony is doing an amazing job being an advocate for permaculture!!). People need to step up the local movement….self SUSTAINABLE practices…..not China Inc…..AND CERTAINLY NOT PETROLEUM.

Gaia said...

Um, to raw by default, above - many people living in cities, crowded, is better for the environment. The more people per room, per building, per structure, the more environmentally friendly it is... unless you are comparing this to a yurt oasis in Mongolia. Suburbia, paved and curbed roads that go on for miles so that people can live in cookie cutter houses with 4000 sq feet and spend their weekends watering lawn, that's the problem, not city dwellers.
BTW I don't have a car, and I'm not in a huge city with a subway like NYC. I live in Norfolk, and the public transit system isn't great, and there's literally only one road with a bike lane. But still, I get around just fine wherever I need to. I've even inspired some coworkers to let go of their cars purely for the money savings.
Aysh and the whole "buy a hybrid and ditch your suv" idea sounds warm and fuzzy, but, according the the UN 2006 Ag report, raising animals for food takes more energy than all the planes, trains, buses, cars, SUVs - all transportation in the US - combined. So eat plants and feel better about not getting around in a Prius.

Shauna said...

I usually just lurk, but you said you love the comments so I'll throw in my 2 cents.

I totally agree with everyone who mentions the plusses of having a fully paid-for, cheaply-insured, rarely-used car. I may not be able to go to Asia every few months but I can go visit my parents on the Cape (from here in NYC) just as often.

I've gathered from your blog that you're a pretty opinionated guy...I'm curious to know what Astrological Sign you are, and if you think that type of spirituality affects your personality. Or perhaps you make your blog a more intensified version of your opinion, for arguments sake. It just seems like for you, Raw is the ONLY way to be...and yet you claim to have friends who still eat cooked food, maybe meat even, and you're not judgemental of them.

I eat raw out of curiosity, am certainly not 100%, and there are some days that I just feel like eating meat. I was giving serious thought to it, and I think there are certain personality types that will never be able to have an "extreme" diet one way or another. As in, even if I ate raw 100% of the time for a whole month, I'd still occassionally jones for a baked good...What do you think?

Love your blog, check for updates daily, and love when you introduce new foods that small-town gals have never heard of before. (Durian, who knew? Still haven't been brave enough to try it.)

Deborah said...

Awesome! You made it to Jill's. She's in my 'hood :) I'm there every chance I get. Try the Cranberry Crumble next time... or the Reuben wrap... simply delicious.

raw by default said...

In response to Gaia (sorry Anthony, but they don't have any other way to contact them), you seem to have missed what I said about quality of life, in addition to environmental issues. Were human beings really designed to live in such close quarters, shoulder-to-shoulder with their neighbour, in concrete boxes? I would argue that we are not. At best, dense urban areas are crowded and noisy. On the other end of the spectrum, you have the slums.

As far as the environment goes, you might have less pollution from cars in the city, but if the infrastructure for other things isn't there, you can end up with problems with waste disposal, water treatment, etc. which will have an impact on the environment. Plus, if everyone's living in the city (instead of someplace where they can grow their own food), everything that the urban dweller eats has to be shipped in, most likely by polluting truck.

I agree that the suburbanites watering their lawns is unnecessary and damaging. I'm sure our snooty neighbours look down on our summer-browned lawn with more than a little disdain. But living in the city just isn't feasible in certain areas due to price. If a tiny apartment in the city costs as much as the larger house in the suburbs, why not buy the house? At least you can have a decent-sized garden (and you can use the water you might've used on your lawn on your veggies instead).

Bella said...

I have to agree with Raw by Default. The quality of life for most IS far better outside of cities. I lived in Manhattan for many, many years and almost everyone I know eventually moves away after they have done what they need to do in the city (school, career, networking, etc.), and rave about how much healthier they are physically, mentally, and emotionally. We are ANIMALS above all else, and are supposed to be surrounded by nature and, at least sometimes, quiet. There are studies with mice that show the decreased health of the animals the more crowded you force them to live.

And I think the idea of "cookie cutter" houses and lawns being watered every weekend is a vast generalization of life outside of a city. Where I live is not entirely rural, but it is far from that stereotype of suburbia. Yes, I miss out on having access to fancy raw restaurants where I am, and being able to walk to do most of my errands, but everyday I walk out onto grass, I don't hear traffic or yelling, the air is pristine, and most telling of all, my dog became MUCH healthier, more outgoing, and playful after I relocated.

Yes, city living has its attributes, and can be fun and stimulating. But I don't believe for one second it is the natural or healthy way for man to live. And I don't believe for many that your clearest thinking, cleanest living, or closest ties to earth happen under city circumstances.


Aaron said...

In response to Shauna. I do know that Tony has friends that eat meat. I know he has relatives that eat meat. When he lived with us in Minneapolis, I think he ate chicken breast every day. I have seen his progression to where he is now. I know Tony is the most motivated person I have ever known and when he finds something he believes in, even if it goes against what HE was doing in the past (like when he was WAY into bow hunting deer), he is very passionate about it. I have many times reminded him that it wasnt too long ago that he was doing this or that and that he should see that others are at a different progression in their life, so dont judge them too much because I could have judged Tony not too long ago. That is hard for him i believe because when he learns something new or a new way of living that is better, he believes it is common sense for people to understand it. Tony has come so far personally, food aside. Picture Anthony, going to school, working, and living with some punks and dread-locked kids in the city while he was the conservative one. Now I see Tony not caring about image (not common from a model) as much but doing what he thinks is right. It is refreshing to see and I have been so proud of him and to watch him progress to where he is. I still find myself reminding him that people have different things that are important to them and it might not be what is important to HIM but he sure does make a great difference in this world. I am sure and wouldnt doubt that Tony does make certain comments and blogs to insight some conversation and be devils advocate but I havent seen him every pose an opinion that wasnt true to himself. When he does, I will be right there to keep him honest! LOL You will find me disagreeing with him often (like in his V-Day blog) but we ALL make each other think about things differently. TONY...See ya in 36 hours!

Shauna said...


Thanks for the insight! I was just curious because he seems SO nice and friendly, and yet SO steadfast in his beliefs! And he definitely incites some awesome thoughts with his statements...although sometimes I feel a little guilty, too. It's hard to be as motivated as the RawModel!!

Sarah said...

ooh! jill's sounds awesome! but what do you mean by cheap? raw soul is the cheapest i've found in NYC so far. not like quintessence which is like $17 a meal with nothing else. i won't even go into pure food and wine...that is just for special occasions!

alissa said...

before i got sick, i would ride my bike from saint paul to minneapolis and back every day. people thought i was crazy!

i still have no car, but i'm not trekking quite as far these days.

i do frequently get cat calls from the street - not for me, but for my bike. purple with silver rain fenders...

Anthony said...

Desserts at Jills top out at $6.50 and Appetizers are about $8-9,(including an EXCELLENT raw pizza that Quintessence would charge $15 for. Entrees are about 12-13. Im a conscious shopper, and she is the best I have found.

The lowest impact style of living would be high rise skyscrapers supported by permaculture nearby. That way humans would be taking up air space and leaving the ground super green. Although if everyone had an acre of permaculture we would be all set.

Plan for true happiness, and its likely that youll be serving the earth wisely.


Ingrid said...

Hi Anthony,

Cars are expensive toys. I was without one for 2 + years while living in Boston's North End. I walked to and from work everyday and hopped on the T or took the commuter rail to where I needed to go. It was wonderful. It felt like freedom, one less thing to worry about.

Now that I've moved back to my home state California with my husband in tow, guess what, I own a car and all the trappings that go with owning a car. What can I say, Nobody Walks in L.A. This is one reason I like living on the East Coast.

There is an alternative. Own a bike. We love bike riding and will purchase bikes soon so we can peddle it when and where can. The car will be reserved for long distance travel. Point: we are married without children, well okay one furry beast but he is pretty independent and stays home.

Great blog BTW. Hum, I must add you to my Like Minded Links Roll. Have a great day!

tash said...

Yeah, vehicles, bleh. :0):-p I haven't had my old truck for about three years now. How liberating! I get everywhere I need to around town by bike or bus pretty much. If I'm going out of town I generally take the bus or Amtrack. Sporadically I will fly, very sporadically. Once in a rare while I'll rent a car for the day or borrow a friend's. About twice a month I'll take a taxi. Working on getting away from cars even more. We have a great little nonprofit here in Missoula, Montana. It's called the Adventure Cycling Association. Check it out! (It's not only for Missoulians.) :0)

Anonymous said...

Owning a vehicle became such a hassle for me and was quite expensive so I decided to give up the lease(thru leasetrader). It was hard to give up but since I went with Zipcar, the rental company, I found that it is a great company and worth it for the occassional trips outside the city or for grocery shopping. Money well spent. Now I could spend more money on organic raw food.