Full Circle: Mark Levengood Edition
I remember it like it was yesterday. I was at Birgitta’s for a Swedish lesson and she flipped the script on me. We would be doing some listening today. I was going to learn about the Finnish dialect. Birgitta played some recordings of media profile Mark Levengood.
This was a fun departure from the normal lessons. I sat there sipping my tea and listened to the soothing sound of Mr. Levengood’s voice. The Finnish accent was very distinct. I liked it. I came home that day and told Swedie about my lesson. I even tried to imitate Mark Levengood with my version of his accent. Swedie laughed. Birgitta played him for me from time to time on those lovely afternoons. I can only describe it as Autumn cozy. Like the guy’s audio books should come with a quilt and a rocking chair.
Peter and I took part in a TV show (check out SVT:Edit in December!) about bald men. The entire experience was good. We were two of the four profiles that were featured in the show. For my part I went to a popular barber shop and talked to the owner about balding and how men deal with it. Then I met up with Peter and we looked at some hats. The process was fun and hopefully will be good television. The last part of the filming was for all of the profiles to meet for a discussion. The director called me to schedule the shoot. Towards the end of the call he said we’d talk with Mark Levengood. Word? I would be able to meet the owner of that soothing voice from all those years back! I couldn’t wait to meet Mr. Levengood to tell him that he helped me learn about Sweden and Swedish.
He came in with such a great energy. I tried to hang back a bit and play it cool as everyone greeted him. My chance would come. Peter chatted with him first and then he directed a question to me about the US.
- Whereabouts in America do you come from?
Wait… the Finnish-Swedish! I want to hear the Mark that read to me. That guy didn’t speak English. But this was still that guy. He made me feel known and seen. I was charmed. He was immediately personal and engaging. I found out that he was actually born in the US. In North Carolina!
- My wife came to visit me in North Carolina when I lived there!
We were practically cousins now! Mark Levengood and I chatted it up for a few minutes until time to shoot. Then we chatted it up for TV. The guy that used to read stories to me was now reminiscing with me about hair loss of all things! It was a crazy experience. The actual taping part was kinda easy. I was just being me. Plus Peter was there so it was like recording a pod with a camera and production team.
I’ll never forget the day that I met Mark Levengood. I hadn’t thought about how it would be, but he was exactly how he had unknowingly presented himself to me years before. A warm and special soul. Until next time…