Interview With Unny Nambudiripad

Unny Nambudiripad
Unny Nambudiripad

My name Unny Nambudiripad, and I’m the Executive Director of Compassionate Action for Animals. I’ve been interviewing the festival committee members for this blog, and I almost forgot about me. I’m also on the committee, so now it’s time to interview…myself!

I sat down with myself (as I always do, since I have no choice) and asked myself about myself.

What have you enjoyed most so far?

I’ve enjoyed the feeling that I’ve helped organize Twin Cities Veg Fest before. Of course, there’s plenty of time for everything to fall apart, but I’m confident that the committee knows how to plan this event and can handle unexpected challenges.

What are you most looking forward to at the Veg Fest?

I look forward to being completely overwhelmed talking to so many people who I care about and who care about animals. Well, I guess I don’t exactly look forward to being overwhelmed. Maybe I dread that. But I do look forward being immersed in a crowd of people who care about animals.

What makes you optimistic about the animal advocacy movement?

Young people! Who says the youth are lazy or apathetic? Just look at our young volunteers and supporters, and you’ll understand why I find them inspiring, motivated, and — yes, even wise.

Imagine you’re talking to somebody who isn’t vegetarian and is — um, a little afraid of you. What would you say to them to convince them to come to the festival?

It’s easy to blend in at this event. You don’t have to talk to people much if you don’t want to. You can sample food, attend cooking demonstrations, listen to speakers, and match the wallpaper if you want. You can still get a lot out of it even if you’re shy and not sure why you’re there.

What hobbies do you enjoy (besides devouring tasty vegan food)?

I enjoy playing cards. My family plays this ridiculously difficult game called 56. It takes months of learning just to be a mediocre 56 player. It’s a team game typically played three against three and involves a lot of strategy. We enjoy jostling and competing with each other.

What’s a fun experience that you’ve had with a non-human animal?

I’m not going to answer your question, Unny. Wait a minute — I’m Unny! I’ll make up my own question. I’ll tell you about an unpleasant experience I had with a non-human animal. I once met a very good-natured dog with a stomach problem. He farted a lot. His caretaker is an attractive woman, but when I think of her, all I can think of is her dog’s farts. Despite this, I do not advocate cruelty or even death to this dog. That’s compassion, right?

What’s your favorite vegetable?

Broccoli! It’s not as hip as kale, but it goes great in replacing green beans in this spicy peanut eggplant and shallot stew. Yum!

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