Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Brown Paste

Try something every day that scares you.” Someone once said this and it stuck in my brain. I guess this is supposed to make you feel more alive and get you out of any ruts you have been in.

It sounds harder than it is.  It doesn’t have to be the big stuff like skydiving or hitchhiking in Harlem, it can be simple. And, honestly, it doesn’t have to be scary as in shit your pants scary. But, “scary” as in taking a risk, stepping out of your comfort zone.

Drive a different route home, talk to someone who intimidates you, buy the generic brand of peanut butter. Sign up for a race that gives you butterflies. The point is to that you continue to experience your life in new and different ways.

The “scary” thing I did yesterday was try a new food. I had heard the band Men at Work sing about this very thing:

Buying bread from a man in Brussels
He was six foot four and full of muscles
I said, "Do you speak-a my language?"
He just smiled and gave me a vegemite sandwich

It has a very bad reputation. Vegemite. Up until now I honestly thought it was some kind of vegetable spread. With mites in it.

I was at a home visit for my job. The guy I was interviewing was from Australia. He plopped down some toast with dark brown goo on it and pronounced, “Here is some vegemite for you to try, mate. I don’t know anyone who likes it but me.” I asked him what the hell it was. “A paste made from yeast extract.” Basically, the sludge that settles to the bottom when you make beer. It had the uncanny resemblance to the contents of a baby’s diaper.

The whole family stared at me as I took my first bite. It was salty, yeasty, mild. And I loved it. No joke.

Will I go and order cases of vegemite? Probably not. Did it change my life? No. It just added a little something-something to what otherwise was a very routine day.

I have a full day today. Kids are off to school after Sam battled a mean, wicked and messy stomach bug for the last two days. I’m headed to yoga and the grocery store before I finish writing a report, make dinner and then drive to Denver for a home visit. Will there be time to try something that scares me? I’ll probably do yoga  in the nude and see what everyone says.

For real,  I might use that one bathroom stall I always avoid at the gym. Funny how even the bathroom stall you choose becomes your routine.

What will you try today?

SUAR

44 comments:

  1. I'm just going to stay open to what the day brings.

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  2. I'm going to make an appearance at playgroup. We haven't been in several months and playgroup is always scary. I don't know if it is vegemite scary, but there is always the fear of random "brown paste" there.

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  3. hmm today? I will try not to lose my mind and totally quit. I might go swim some laps.

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  4. Vegemoite is not as delicious, but I love Marmite on toast (the British version). It's low in calories and not at all scary.

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  5. That does not sound remotely appealing - good for you trying something new and bonus that you liked it!

    You're so right about the routine, right down to the bathroom stall. I always feel "funny" when my usual stall is in use and I have to use another.

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  6. Ha! That is so true about the bathroom stalls! Why are we such creatures of habbit? I'm the worst, if I don't have things just so and my routine is thrown off I don't know what to do. I'm going to practice this!

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  7. Holy crap. I had no idea what vegemite was. And I make beer at home, which means I have been WASTING SOMETHING (that's probably) EDIBLE. And the yeasts are full of vitamin B...

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  8. I too have a routine potty stall at my gym. The one in the back, if you must know. And I tried spinning for the first time today, fell.in.love.

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  9. Vegemite is ok, very salty. Today I will try asperagus. I am 42 and I always refused to try that (I am very picky, not proud of it) My husband bought some and I want my kids to try so I kind of have to If I don't want to be a hypocrite!!!

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  10. Okay... vegemite scares me. Maybe that's a good one for me to take on, too. Head cheese and blood sausage rank up there with food fears as well.
    Will the nude yoga take place at home or a studio? lol

    It's feeling like every moment is a new experience for me on this trip and I'm facing things that 'scare' me constantly :P I am so craving "routine" right now... lol. But it has been a gas. Today I led us off the GPS route and found our way home from a park :)

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  11. Back in my days in the Navy, vegemite was used to spread underneath someones nose as frocking/hazing/celebration to those who crossed the international dateline and/or equator for the first time. Lets just say I still get the dry heaves just thinking about it...just saying.

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  12. Thanks for the food for thought beth. I'll be thinking of this today. Perhaps I'll register for a tri...that scares me. Or talk to someone I see daily at preschool but never say a word to. Yes, that's what I'll do.

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  13. Here's a blog post that fits within your theme of trying things new. This was written by a girl who is traveling all over the world with her fiancee; they are currently in China. It's about trying the food there. Oh yeah. (I used to volunteer for the organization she worked for, which is how I know her.) http://journals.worldnomads.com/proneymooners/story/71833/China/Chinese-Gastronomical-Treats

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  14. Today I tried swimming laps for the first time. Yes, I'm almost 40 years old and have never used swimming as a form of exercise. I'm a runner after all, why do I need to swim? Well, now I'm an injured person that can no longer run, so swim it is. I was NOT looking forward to it, but it went alright. Next up, buying a bike. Still not happy about not running, but trying to make some lemonade out of these darn lemons in my life.

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  15. I'm going to try the stuff that rises to the top when you make beer. I'm out of control ...

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  16. generic brand of peanut butter? oh, I could never.

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  17. I put my left shoe on first today. I wouldn't say it's something that scares me. But I forced myself to do it.

    Once on my way to a half marathon, I tried to put my car A/C on an odd number. But I was worried it would make me have a bad race, so I fixed it. Sounds like a joke, but it's not.

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  18. I tried vegemite when I lived in New Zealand. Once. Not a favourite for me. I signed up for a trail running group today.

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  19. my husband is from new zealand, so of course we have vegemite. He has a vegemite sandwich every day!

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  20. OK
    just when the NZ born Pita thought he couldn't love you any more . . . . .you like vegemite.

    holy. freaking. gross.

    He'll bring you a case to Boston.

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  21. Love it!!!! Keep writing, girl - you have no idea the many smiles you put on people's faces! I LOL everytime reading your blogs!!!

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  22. I love it too. It's weird and delicious. I should buy some, just to freak out my friends.

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  23. At work I have an Aussie and a Kiwi on my team. I am very afraid of saying the word Vegamite. They probably have some in a desk drawer.

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  24. Never even heard of it till today....intrigued to say the least! Something that I tried today...hmmmmmm.....1st day at a new gym! Felt great!!! And I am sure I will find a "favorite" bathroom stall.

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  25. My mom being an Aussie, I have enjoyed Vegamite since I was a kid. But I can only get Marmite around here,so I take what I can get (unless my kids find the jar and eat it first!)
    Something scary... I got out of bed this morning, that was pretty scary! :)

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  26. i thought i was the only one who used the same stall at the bathroom! ha!
    not sure what i'll do that will scare me. cook kidney beans from scratch? thats kind of wild, isn't it? ;) fun post!

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  27. yes. there are lots of things I don't do because they scare me...maybe I'll introduce myself to the fellow baseball moms or join a running group...

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  28. Nice. I can't really fathom, how the Australians invented that stuff. Other things that seem so strange are like "cheese" - hey let's massage this cow's tit for 5 hours, and then let this stuff sit for a couple of months and then let's eat it! Who the heck thought of that? Was there a cheese innovation challenge, and some people milked cats or dogs? Then others let the cheese sit for 5 years?!!

    I think Vegemite just comes from a case of bad washing up, and then somebody looks at something left in the jar and eats it ... then he goes "hey, I wonder how we can recreate that?"

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  29. Andrew - LOL on the cow's tit. Same with eggs. Who first thought of eating an egg? Why did that EVER sound or look like a good idea?

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  30. You ARE awesome. You're a shit sandwich of awesome.

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  31. Rose: Dang no one ever has called me a shit sandwich of awesome. Blushing.

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  32. So true about the bathroom stall.

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  33. Vegemite - food of the Gods!! And yes I grew up on the stuff. Tastes awesome on toast. I love that you tried it and I love that you liked it.

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  34. I went to Australia last summer and guess what? Never did try vegemite! Pathetic, huh?

    But today I...went back to my old hairdresser. The new one was too scary!

    Yep, I'm an old dog.

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  35. I HEART VEGEMITE!

    But I can only get Marmite here, so that's what I have.

    In fact, a friend of mine sent me 6 big jars as a birthday present. I went straight up to Cloud #9!

    It's tasty for brothy soups! Try it!

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  36. gross. Vegemite makes me want to puke.

    Good job. You're scary.

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  37. I bought Brussels sprouts at the grocery store today. My whole family will be trying something new (but hopefully not too scary) this week! Poor things, they all have to play along when mommy decides to rein in the crazy eating habits we sometimes get into...

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  38. I love Marmite, which is very similar (I grew up in England)but as Bill Bryson writes in Notes From a Small Island: Marmite "has the visual properties of an industrial lubricant", so yeah a lot of people are afraid to try it. It's probably something you need to grow up eating.

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  39. What will I try today? Not vegemite, that stuff reminds me of all my mom's vegan cheese experiments growing up. Shudder.

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  40. I'm down with the vegemite, but the nutella and I just don't get along.

    Hmm, since I'm reading this WAY past my bedtime perhaps I will stop reading blogs (even one so lovely as yours) and go to bed and face all the busy thoughts that are vying for attention in my scattered brain.

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  41. Double brown paste with the vegemite and Sam's brown paste (or more like liquid...)

    This whole thing reminded me of Shart Brownies.

    Today I will drive in a car for 6 hours with my boss who is a great guy but 6 hours? Holy Guacamole.

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  42. Like so many things, if you can get past the smell it is not bad.

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  43. I am going to sign up for a Half Marathon that sort of side swiped me! I was always going to do the Rock n Roll half in L.A. in Los Angeles (did it last year), but this one came to my attention recently and it's in JUNE!!! It's very reasonably priced and it's in beautiful Ventura!

    I haven't trained for it yet. The longest run I've done this year is 8.5 miles, but I'm going to just jump in.

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  44. This is part of the lululemon manifesto - a quote that I've always loved (as with many others on that collage!). It's hard to think of something EVERY day, but you're right, routines come so natural and we never stop to think about Why we do even the littlest of things.

    Today, I will write two guests posts that I've been procrastinating with :)

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