The 3 Verbs, pt1 "To Live"

I love the tavern scene in the movie, Fiddler on the Roof, where Tevye and Lazar Wolf are  celebrating the wedding arrangement of Tevye’s daughter Tzeitel. They are so overjoyed that they break out in chorus singing about the good times and the bad, but that in this present moment, they should drink “L’chaim” (to life).

In essence, they were saying that life should be celebrated (or at least embraced) no matter the situation.

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On March 25, 2012, my job will be to live, discover, & connect inside one of the U.S. states for a year. And to help you understand a little bit more about the nature of this adventure, I’ll be spending this week “Vanna White-ing” the verbs I’m trying to embody.

The first is “to live”.

Simply put, my aim is to be absorbed into the state’s unique culture. My plan is to be exposed to a wide variety of people and places while seeking out the things that make this area different than anywhere else. Whether it be the way people speak, their affiliations with religion, art, or the world around them, I’m hoping to jump right in to the middle of it all to become like them.

Another way to say this, is that by year’s end, I’d like for the people inside the state to consider me one their own. It’s a lofty aspiration, but I think it’s attainable.

Of course, the meaning behind the word “living” also denotes the idea of sharing. Like Christopher McCandless’ final words in his diary, “happiness is only real when shared”, I think life is only real when shared. So, through a weekly blog, filled with pictures, stories, and observations, along with twenty or more videos throughout the year, I will be sharing this “verb” with you and the world.


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I’d like to hear your suggestions on the ways I could best dive in to the culture of any state. Where would you start? Who would you seek out?

Also, for your enjoyment, a link to the song, “To Life!”

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