Over the past six years, there hasn’t been any radio or podcast that has had such an impact on me as WTF with Marc Maron. From the first time I listened I knew it was going to be a long relationship.

MM_Dmitri_von_Klein_29I take Marc for walks, with headphones in my ears, walks around the park nearby. I listen to it in the car if I’m alone and I listen to him on trains, planes, and buses.

I realized pretty quick that his form of comedy, self-depreciation and view of the world matches up to mine so well. His love/hate relationship with technology. His constant worry about things. His awkward feelings towards family and relationships. The talks with actors, writers, comedians, musicians. Often times I see the name of the guest, have no idea who they are, but get so much from it – even if it’s a little snippet of insight into how to live, humanity or life.

Most of all, though, I realize that listening to WTF somehow keeps me sane. Val realizes that I need some time each week to listen to it. That it levels me out. Keeps me from taking a deep dive into my own worries and problems. It’s there each week and for that I’m very thankful.

I just read this piece about his move to new studio in a new garage. The piles of stuff became too much, but the nostalgic memories of that space will live on in podcast land.

If I look back at the list of guests, I can sometimes remember where I was when I listened to that episode, which is an odd feeling. I’ve never remembered where I was listening to a particular radio piece. There’s a lot of research about podcasts and what they do to our brain. But I can’t listen to too many. I try to download other shows but they don’t do something, they don’t capture the zeitgeist enough for me. They leave me feeling like I’ve wasted some time – but WTF always makes me feel a little better about myself than I did before I listened to it.

And I learn things! I can’t even count the number of books, movies, music and TV shows I’ve heard about on WTF that I wouldn’t have found out about without it. Countless jazz and blues musicians. I feel like I could write a history of comedy just from the knowledge I’ve gained from the show. Really though, what is so helpful is how Marc makes us realize that even if you’re famous or have a lot of money, you still are a person with feelings, problems, fears, worries and issues and we all have to deal with those in some way or another.

In the end I’ll probably never be able to fully understand the impact the show has had on me. But it remains a goal of mine to be on the show one day, with my friend Chris, talking about our own show, ideas and how we got there. And to stick around for a cup of coffee, pet Buster, Monkey and LaFonda and say thanks to Marc in person.


Spring Time Thoughts

I rarely do lists of links anymore. But recently I’ve found that my browsers need some space and I have too many windows open.  Here are a few for spring, or for now, whatever type of season you are having there. This is the time of year where I get really sleepy, between seasons, and also terribly hungry. I feel like I can eat anything, and a lot of it and still be hungry. Ah well, such is the movement. 

If you want to read about a really cool chef who moved to an unlikely location and works with local foragers and farmers to get ingredients you can’t find aynwhere else, but also who learns to cook from grandma’s in the area, then read this article. Inspiring and original story and also, it shows that some, or most, of the best food being cooked has ancient practices, recipes behind it and time on it’s side.  

Rewriting the Menu in Tulum

The Greek Islands have held mysteries sine the beginning. They are beautiful, rugged and hard to reach for the everyday traveller from afar. Easier now perhaps than in the past, but it still demands some dedication, unless you have your own boat. On Hydra, there exists some kind of small collective of artists, who have been going to the remote island for years. Given it’s tremendous beauty, scarred earth and the law that says no cars allowed, it sounds like the most relaxing kind of paradise there is. 

Beyond the Sea

Just when you think that all of the profiles of chefs and people in the food world are the same, along comes an article like this one in Garden and Gun magazine, celebrating the south of the US. An area that I’ve become more and more interested in lately, perhaps because of a certain t.v. show, or simply because it represents to this American the last part of my country that has mystery, eeriness and something spooky, historical and earthy to it. Honestly, this is the most engaging article I’ve read in a long time. What you read and know about history is how you participate in it. 

Michael Twitty: The Antebellum Chef

If you’ve ever thought that hipster food trends just appear, or, somehow just show up because of instagram it’s probably not true. Somewhere, those ideas first appeared. Wether abroad or at home, the movement of people around the world has really contributed to this idea of hipster-ism. But, as this article shows, sometimes things turn out to be different. The idea of “artisan toast” sounds really ridiculous, but it’s happening. And as this reported found out, the original “concept” or should we say the cafe that started the crazy has a really intriguing story about where that toast came from and why. It’s not all hipsters and IPhones. But a real story of a real person, struggling with her own life.  I was enthralled and glued to this article the minute I found it. 

A Toast Story

And finally, this piece about home envy. Envy is especially unique part of our daily lives, given the amount of images in newspapers, magazines and online that we see of people in beautiful locations. But what if those people in those beautiful locations also had home envy of others? This article traces the line of home envy starting from the authors own friends, whose home he envy’s. All in SFO of course, where else.

The San Francisco Envy Chain 

Currently reading this. From a really unknown Canadian author, Michael Winter. Real writing here. Interesting dialogue, about a part of the world that feel foreign, Newfoundland. All his books are great. Find them if you can. 

One Last Good Look


Speciale Italia

When I sit and read about the beauty and wit of your country, of the beaches, mountains, food and people, i know that I am missing out on a piece of the world that i long to understand better, more deeply, with insight and passion. 

Your country of lovers, of people with ideas and motivations, of those longing for work, for importance, for reality, those longing for a piece of the pie, just a liver, is where I want to be. I want to be mixed into this slew of youth and oldness, of generations gone by, but of history and knowledge still present now, flowing through the products, through the families, through the lives and times of your fellow Italians. 

But the beauty and the class is overshadowed by the mess and the corruption. You only have to look a bit deeper to see that things are not shiny and golden. But then, what is with the full restaurants, the bars still packed with gentlemen drinking coffee and reading the sports paper? Why are there so many tourist, so many gelatos being bought. The life of the Italians in hardship, in peril sometimes appears to be the life that we all wish that we could lead, one of drifting and idleness giving us the time to manage and improve our selves, our senses, our hobbies and crafts. 

It’s a mystery of a country, but one for me, that needs to reveal it’s secrets, bit by bit. I need more time, more ability to explore it, understand it and become part of it’s future.