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Very Good Things

Recommendations on podcasts, movies, TV, books, recipes, restaurants, technology, travel, shopping and more. Things that make life more interesting or satisfying.

Month

September 2016

This American Life Podcast – One Last Thing Before I Go (#597)

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Photo by Lee Royal

This American Life is one of my favourite podcasts and this week’s episode perfectly demonstrates why. One Last Thing Before I Go has two stories (22 and 33 minutes long) in which ordinary people make last ditch efforts to get through to their loved ones. Both stories are insightful, emotional and beautifully told. Find out more or listen here.

Tramsheds at Harold Park – Sydney’s New Food Destination

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There’s been lots of talk about the Tramsheds at Harold Park and it finally opened this weekend in Sydney’s Inner West. It’s pretty awesome. Tramsheds is a food destination: Bekya (Middle Eastern); Bodega 1904 (Spanish/Latin American); Belle’s Hot Chicken (chicken and natural wine), Butcher and The Farmer (Jared Ingersoll); DUST (bakery/pizza); Flour Eggs Water (by A Tavola); Fish & Co. (sustainable seafood); Garçon (by The Little Marionette); Gelato Messina (needs no introduction); Mama’s Buoi (Vietnamese); Osaka Trading Co. (by Tokyo Bird); Sir Chapel (bistro and brewery) but there’s lots of other handy stuff there too including a supermarket, cellar, nail bar, hairdresser, boxing gym, pharmacist, medical centre and bulk natural/organic food store. See the full list of vendors here. ‘Artisan Lane’ will be a flexible space in the Tramsheds for the providores to share their skills with the community. It will house pop-up restaurants and host regular market stalls, events, education sessions and activities. Looks like they are developing some nice green space outside so you can loll about in the sun with a full and happy stomach. Tramsheds at Harold Park is located at 1 Dalgal Way, Forest Lodge, NSW. Keep up to date at their Facebook page.

How I Built This Podcast – Entrepreneurs And Their Stories

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A new podcast from NPR. How I Built This is about innovators, entrepreneurs, and idealists, and the stories behind the movements they built. Each episode is a narrative journey marked by triumphs, failures, serendipity and insight — told by the founders of some of the world’s best-known companies and brands. Episode 1 was with Sara Blakely (creator of Spanx) and episode 2 was with the guys that started Instagram. I thoroughly enjoyed them both. At under 30 minutes each, it’s a good listening choice when on your way to work. Think of it as a morning motivator. Get it here.

Moss & Fog – Beauty, Design, Smart Ideas

Who doesn’t like looking at beautiful things? Moss and Fog is a project by a creative guy, Ben. It grew out of his overwhelming desire to share cool and beautiful things he sees. He covers areas of design, science and nature that appeal to the eye and the brain. Like this crazy $150 Million Stair to Nowhere (pictured) that New York will be getting some time next year and this Perfectly Preserved Mid Century Home in Dallas and these Incredible Geometric Desserts. In his own words “Design/culture blogs are plentiful, but I think when well curated, they can be beautiful respites on the internet to get inspired and find new ideas.” Agree. Visit and sign up to Moss and Fog.

You’re The Worst – TV Comedy Series

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Funny, dark, honest and original. You’re The Worst is a comedy series from Stephen Falk that takes a modern look at love and happiness through two people who haven’t been successful with either. It follows Jimmy (Chris Geere), a self-involved writer, and Gretchen (Aya Cash), a self-destructive Los Angeles PR executive, as these two toxic personalities attempt a relationship. It premiered around 2 years ago on FX with season 3 out last month. I’m halfway through season 1 and have heard it gets better and better. Watch the trailer here. Get it on iTunes (unless you can view it free on FX in the USA).

Ricotta Gnocchi Recipe – Easy, Light and Fast

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Image from http://www.smh.com.au by Marina Oliphant

Not many people have the time or patience to make gnocchi from scratch but this one you can proudly say you made yourself and it will only set you back around 30 minutes beginning to end including cooking time. And it feels lighter on your stomach than traditional gnocchi. It’s a recipe from SMH Good Food (Caroline Velik) many years ago and is a crowd pleaser including vegetarians and children.

You will need:
500g fresh ricotta (Note: if you can only get your hands on soft/packaged ricotta I recommend draining for 30 min)
2/3 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus a little extra to serve
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp salt
1 cup plain flour, plus extra if required
1 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 punnets cherry tomatoes, quartered
1/2 cup basil leaves, torn

Serves 4. View full recipe here.

Weiner – Political and Entertaining Documentary

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A documentary following Anthony Weiner and the sexting scandals he’s now infamous for that subsequently collapsed his personal and political worlds, starting from his time in Congress through to his campaign for Mayor of New York City. I was captivated by this film for many reasons: (1) How anyone would want to have a documentary crew follow them around given the circumstances (he confesses later in the film that his intention was for some version of the truth to be told); (2) His stunning and impeccably dressed wife, Huma Abedin (Hillary Clinton’s right hand lady), and the way she dealt with his indiscretions; (3) His relentless drive and energy that kept him on the campaign trail despite the full on drama that was happening in every part of his life and (4) His name and wondering whether this would ever have become such a huge story and source of entertainment had he been fortunate enough to have a different surname (probably not). It’s cringeworthy but highly entertaining. View the trailer here or watch it on iTunes.

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