Host Tanja Andrews and director Oscar Grimm of Oakland, California, are not your mama’s hippies. The first shot of the second episode shows Tanja in a bikini with her characteristic Afro and nose ring, promoting the idea that environmentalism and the “new green” can be hip and cool. Tanja is a raw foodist and former hippie of the patchouli-wearing, unshaven breed, while Oscar hails from independent media and animation. Launched in August 2006, Tanja, Oscar, and their correspondents’ goal is to help spread the word about ways people can improve the world through smarter daily choices, while confirming to viewers that such a lifestyle can be “sane and fun” as well as healthy and environmentally sound. After winning three awards at the 2006 Vloggies (two of which were viewer’s choice), it looks like Tanja and Oscar are on their way to making that dream happen.
Barring unforeseen delays, episodes are posted every Monday. With a Scriggity sense of humor, Tanja introduces viewers to news like degree programs in organic agriculture and the effects of common chemicals found in hotdogs. Episodes appear with several articles outlining other news and events that didn’t make it onto the show, which tries to stick to three major stories. And like any good vlog’s blog, it also features links to websites, companies, and green products referenced on-camera. Tanja also likes to share her raw food recipes, demonstrating wholesome meals like summer pesto and plum tarts. The show, which won a 2006 Viewer’s Choice Vloggie for Best Edited Vlog, usually takes place in an apartment, allowing its host the versatility of delivering news from her couch and showing us how to cook raw in her kitchen.
There is an endless supply of green vlogs out there, but the reason this one is so fun is its host. With her somewhat odd humor (“It sounds like there’s somebody in the drier”), her wealth of insight on “New Green” issues, and a genuinely delicious-looking array of personal raw food concoctions, it’s easy to see why the show is a viewer favorite. Check out her raw recipes for green curry (where she also goes the extra mile and explains what parts of fresh lemongrass to use and how to approach a young coconut), Analog Nog (eggnog for vegans, raw foodists, and people like me who think a drink based around raw egg is both unsettling and unappetizing), and chocolate tarts (which is only noteworthy because it looks amazing and amazingly simple).