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1. LISTENING: Joni Mitchell's "Both Sides Now"
This orchestrated version of Joni's best-known song is a touchstone for me as I write the Death album. I listen to a similar version (the one from her album of the same name, released in 2000) almost every day. When I was in Norway on the Arctic Circle Residency (read about it here) , I'd walk out, over, and away and stand in front of a massive, glittering, silent glacier, put on my headphones and listen, tears streaming down my face. Or I'd lean over the bow of the ship and stare into the water, listening, watching the fulmars wheel over the waves, wondering about death, life, those I've lost, and those I've found.
2. SAVORING: Turkish Peber
Do you ever want a savory candy? Probably not. No one to whom I've posed this question admits that they do, at least not to my face. Well, I've wanted a savory candy for a long time and I finally found one in Norway: Turkish Peber (pronounced "pepper"). It's sweet, but the dominant flavors are salt, black licorice, pepper and ... a certain zing! I'll let you find out for yourself what causes that tongue-puckering zap. It's bizarre, but not unpleasant, and it comes on after the fact. I read somewhere that there's even a Turkish Peber ice cream. Given my love of making absurd ice cream flavors, I say, yes please!
3. EATING: Brunost aka Norwegian Brown Cheese
"It tastes like a weird, super-thick peanut butter." That's what the haters say. I'm a lover and can't get enough of this stuff ever since my first bite aboard the tall ship Antigua in June on the residency. A thin slice on a piece of toast, slathered with butter is my favorite way to eat it. I cannot wait to try the other varieties: Fløtemysost and Ekte geitost. Packing to come home, I put half a block of brown cheese in the bottom of my suitcase. When I ran out, I promptly ordered two blocks from a place online called Willy's Products Scandinavian Food Store. Luckily for me, just last week a fellow artist from my trip texted me this: "They have Brown Cheese at Zabar's!!" Wonders will never cease!
Ever since I started writing this monthly list of interesting songs, books, ideas, and, yes, food, I've gotten amazing feedback.
More than a few people have written to ask if they can "steal this idea" and do something like it for their website. Hell yes! Please do!
A chronicle of my thinking and attention, My 3 Things is my way of connecting and sharing what I am up. If you're new around here, Welcome! Don't be afraid to hit reply and send me a message. Some people even like to send me THEIR 3 Things, which I totally encourage! And if you've been following along for awhile, I hope you know how grateful I am. You're the reason I do this.
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