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Are job cuts death knell for journalism?

8 things you may not know about me

I was tagged on this meme by Neil Perkin. I've actually done the five-things-you-didn't-know-about-me meme before, so I was kinda contemplating to just add three more to that, but then I thought better of it and decided to do it properly. And since I've seen quite a few new readers come to this blog recently, I'll add a few things that those of you who know me well will be familiar with:

1) I owe my life to a dog. To this date, it's probably the best story of my life: too bad I was on the wrong side of the media's spotlight, but it was certainly an event that came to define me in many ways in – for better and worse.

2) Yes, even for the better. I wouldn't particularly recommend being run over by a car and left to die, but, grim as the story is, it taught me a few valuable life lessons. One of them being that fear is overrated. Well, actually, having read Gavin de Becker's The Gift of Fear, I have to moderate that: fear can be useful, but the fact that I completely lost all fear for two years after my accident helped me accomplish a great many things, particularly in regards to my career.

3) In one of my inspired moments, when, for once, I had money to spare, I amassed an art collection, too bad most of it is in storage. One of my favourites is here, I've uploaded another picture here:


(Dreameress, by Jöran Flo)

4) I'm crap at selling myself and persistently keep downplaying my achievements. Fortunately, this is to some degree compensated for by the fact that I can be very persuasive when it comes to selling an idea or story I believe in, and that I'm quite adept at stumbling across great stories, people, situations etc...

5) If I ever was a Goth, it was subconscious

6) I once aspired to become an Olympic rider, but gave up on the equestrian scene in my late teens as it wasn't very intellectually stimulating; I didn't have the money to really give it a go and I had a rather brutal meeting with a car which put me out of the game for a while

7) My great grand dad on my mother's side was an opera singer who sang with the likes of Kirsten Flagstad but refused to sing outside the town he grew up in. He died before I was born, but I keep thinking that, while there is still time, I should find time to record a few interviews with those who knew him.

8) I was once a member of the Verdi commission, which was going to spend the same amount of millions to investigate the life and works of Giuseppe Verdi as the Government at the time was going to spend on its Verdi-kommisjon (verdi happens to be the Norwegian word for value, so our "Verdi-commission" was a pun on the Government's "Verdi-commission": the latter was set up to determine what the most important values society were at the time. As it so happens, I also love the music of Giuseppe Verdi).

I tag: Vampus, Hjothen, Cathy, Adam, Feeling Listless, Becky, John Kelly, and the last one I simply can't decide right now - will try to make up my mind soon


Well. There's probably lots you don't know about me. But I'll see if I can come up with eight things to tell you about me. Now, quick. Go interview those folks who knew your granddad.

Which of Verdi's operas is your favorite?

I've seen La Traviata (sp?) and Otello, the latter was way too complicated for me and I'm sure it was great but there was just too much going in my head. The former was just straight up one of the best things I've ever heard.

The reference to your great granddad: Ibsen was a formative influence in my life. I first read him in my twenties: unfortunately not in Norwegian.

I did it. Come see if you knew any of this stuff about me. Thanks for letting me play!

Becky: fun take on it, I'll read more thorough at the end of the day I'm just starting now. Last day before the Easter holiday today.

I have to appologise for originally writing grand father here, I've since amended to great grand father, but that doesn't make it less pressing to go out and do those interviews. I've been thinking lately that I want to do more interviews like that via podcast: so many stories I'd like to preserve for posterity. In the case of one of my American aunts I'm afraid it's already too late: she was going to write the history of Carmel (CA) of which she knows a lot of very interesting stuff, but she was always too busy running a career, a household, all of those things. Feisty and impressive woman: a pretty decent hobby pilot, raised 5 kids single handedly etc, but during the last year, at eighty or so, her memory is deteriorating rapidly, and by the time I find a way to go to San Jose it will probably be too late, if it isn't already...

Candadai: Yes, Ibsen is great. I don't think reading him in Norwegian is a requirement. My favourite performance of one of his plays was one in London, Haymarket, where Ralph Fiennes played Brand - spectacular.

Ashok: to be honest I haven't seen that many of Verdis operas live. In terms of the music, Nabucco is one of my favourites. I did see La Traviata live in Rome once, very memorable, but the casting wasn't the best. Violetta was spectacular, but the guy who played Alfredo wasn't a very convincing choice.

As for Otello: it's based on one of Shakespears plays, and I must admit that's a playwright I've got mixed feelings about. I like his poetry and some of his comedies, but I'm not a big fan of his tragedies, most of which end with everybody killing each other in various brutal ways - Othello is certainly no exception.

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