Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Sharkies and Celebs in the OC

Newport Beach - Back Bay

So I spent the past week in Orange County, CA. The OC is not one of my favorite spots in the world. It is trafficky, crowded, vapid, plastic, a bit to ostentatious, and (more than a bit) too Republican. I usually get stuck for a week in the nation's biggest parking lot - Anaheim. But this year was a bit different. Marisa and I spent our non-working hours at the home of our co-worker's parents in Newport Beach. Alyssa (our co-worker) grew up in Newport's Back Bay area. She and her parents were excellent hosts, and allowed us to see all that is Orange through fresh eyes.

I was able to get out and run several mornings before being smacked around a bit by a cold that settled in on day 4. The Back Bay has paved and dirt trails that skirt its edges. The trails are surprisingly hilly. As you enter the trails, there is a smell like fresh tea. Marisa told me what plant created the aroma, but I promptly forgot it. Along the way, you can see a lot of rabbits, numerous types of birds, and if you're lucky, a bobcat.

We were in the So. Cal region in order to run our company's booth at Natural Products Expo West - the largest natural products show in the world. This was my 19th year of working the show, and my first working to introduce the World's Best Veggie Burger to the world. Since it is LA proximate, we saw and met some people everyone would know. Fabio had a booth promoting whey and colostrum protein. He actually looked really good, and spent long hours with everyone who wanted to talk about his product. The wonderful Marilu Henner stopped by our booth twice in order to eat our burgers and chat. There is a picture of Marisa and I with Marilu on the Hilary's Eat Well Facebook page. She is really committed to natural, organic, and vegan/vegetarian work. Dean Karnazes was there to promote something, as was Brendan Brazier with Vega.

I ran into Scott Jurek after hours at a vegan eatery in Costa Mesa. He was hanging out with an acquaintance of mine who works for Flora - the company that sells Udo's 3-6-9 oil blend that Scott uses. I had run with him one morning last year (which had been a thrill). I told Scott that I was glad to see him in one piece after the accident. He mentioned that he is looking for a new car.

Finally, I stopped by the Sharkies booth. Sharkies makes fantastic vegan, organic,energy sports chews. I mentioned to their sales director how much I liked their products, and she handed me a case. I'm heading out on a long run today, and plan to take a packet of them with me. If you haven't tried them, you should. They are really tasty, with a good texture, and natural energy. I am a real fan of companies that offer vegan sports products like Sharkies, Vega, and Flora. If you are looking for energy chews, post-workout protein, or essential oils, I would recommend Sharkies, Vega Sport Vanilla protein powder, and Flora's Udo's 3-6-9 Oil Blend. You won't go wrong with any of them.

And finally, finally - I have been reading Truman Capote's Answered Prayers. I've read almost all of his works, but had not picked one up in a while. I had forgotten what a truly remarkable writer he was. The book (unfinished though it is) is so thoughtful and moving. If you are looking for something that you will enjoy, yet will also make you think, check out a copy at your local library.


  1. I've started using Udo blend this last month. I can't quite tell if its making a difference, but figured it can't hurt. I looked at Vega as well...just a little pricey for my pocket book right now. Gotta focus on a few things!The pictures are great! sounds like a fresh look was what was needed.

  2. Yeah, Vega is pricey, but great. I mainly love their sport protein powder. As for Udo's, it is hard to tell if anything speeds up recovery, because how could you possibly know? But knowing Udo, and what a serious genius the man is, as well as Flora (IMHO - possibly the best natural products company in the world), I defer to his claims. If you want to read more, Udo wrote an amazing book about 10 years ago called 'Fats That Heal. Fats That Kill.' It isn't light reading (it's about 600 pages long). It is a great resource for the thought process behind his oils.