Hometown: Monterrey, Nuevo León (That's right—in Mexico!)
Fave bands: They're not exactly bands, but I love me some Shakira, Lady Gaga, Ricky Martin, Nicki Minaj (I can rap to every song on her album. Don't judge! I had a lot of free time one summer), La Quinta Estación, and Alejandro Sanz (if you speak Spanish, definitely check him out … and if you don't, still do it because he's AMAZING). Can I add Glee as a band? What?! I'm a gleek, and I'm not ashamed of it.
About me: My real name is Ana Laura, but everybody calls me Annie. I was born and raised in Mexico, which means I make some mean vegan tacos. I love my family and friends very much. I'm obsessed with vegan cooking … and eating, for that matter. Ever since I was a kid, I've been known to read a cookbook before going to bed (yeah, my parents were also worried about me).
Things you like: Working at peta2, mango smoothies, watching infomercials, listening to music in the car, going to the movies, grilling with my family, reality shows, baking, peanut butter, diet coke, doing outreach, taking pictures of food at restaurants, guinea pigs, The Food Network, oatmeal, veggie burgers, and peanut butter and banana smoothies. Oh, and when people eat vegan food and they're like "OMG, I would've never known it was vegan!"—I live for moments like that!
I dislike: Papaya, when the battery on my iPod dies, driving, watching sports on TV, mean people, being cold, and cruelty to animals!
How I went veg: I was actually that person who made fun of vegetarians (I know—I sucked), and one day, my teacher mentioned that she was vegetarian, and I (being the horrible person I was) made fun of her. That very same day, I ran into a PETA story on TV and checked out the peta2 webpage, just out of curiosity, and it completely changed my life. I saw "30 Reasons Why You Should Become a Vegetarian" and immediately went vegetarian. Thanks to the help of the peta2 staff and my teacher, I later went vegan. And here I am now, helping animals and loving every second of it! Oh, and if you're wondering what happened with my high school teacher—I apologized, and we are now great friends. We even organize vegan cooking demos together. I knew school had to be useful somehow!
Random things: Back in 2009, I sold around 500 vegan cupcakes to pay for my plane ticket to intern at PETA. (Needless to say, I gained like 5 pounds with my little business.) And I once pretended to be 25 years old when I was really 17 in order to give an animal rights conference at a college in my hometown, and they bought it! Oh, beautiful memories!
Is it true you get lost everywhere you go? This is very true—I have no sense of direction. But hey, I try to look on the bright side: It's always an adventure!
Photo by: BenjaminThompsonCC by 2.0