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I always thought I was Polish, Russian, Lithuanian, Ukrainian Jewish but a DNA test explained a Norwegian mystery and I wrote about here: https://levraphael.substack.com/p/my-viking-blood

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Lev, I enjoyed your piece. Though I do not look it, I too have 6% Norwegian DNA and 2% from northern Germany, so, as I wrote, I assume that's from Vikings cuddling up with my British forebears. My son is six foot eight with blue eyes and reddish-blonde hair and beard. My dark-haired, dark-eyed daughter, on the other hand, who is not tall, seems to have inherited all the Jewish genes. My father was a geneticist and would have loved all this fascinatingly detailed DNA exploration.

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Thanks! Fun to write and fun to live.

It makes sense that I have some of that DNA given that the Vikings not only got to the current-day Baltic countries but all the way down to the Black Sea.

Happy Passover!

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Just this week, I stayed with a friend in Liverpool, imagining the place as in my blood. We part Norwegians will have to visit Norway sometime.

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I'm currently back studying Swedish on Duolingo which I started some years ago when I thought I'd be teaching there. Though I've watched Norwegian films I find Sweden more appealing especially after 1.5 years reading about the history, culture, etc. So it's on my bucket list.

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Good for you, Lev! Hope that works out.

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Jag drömmer om det! Tack!

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I'd like to signal that this story, and another about the ecstasy of attending a free concert Paul gave in 2008 in Quebec City, appear in my new memoir-in-essays, Midlife Solo.

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Apr 21Liked by Beth Kaplan, Alice Goldbloom

Beth Kaplan: Thank you so much for sharing.

I like the unsentimental, hard to the bone Paul McCartney of "Helter Skelter," "Live and Let Die," "Magical Mystery Tour," "Sergeant Pepper." I am clean, but maybe this means I am a druggee at heart?!

Thank you so much for sharing.

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Armand, Paul has an extraordinary voice with a spectacular range - from the screaming rockers to the softest ballads, from very high to very low. I don't know another rock singer with such range. I like them all.

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Apr 21Liked by Beth Kaplan, Alice Goldbloom

As eloquently written as Paul's songs.

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Well, that's as high praise as a writer every had! Thank you!

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Apr 21Liked by Beth Kaplan, Alice Goldbloom

Beth, this is so fascinating how DNA revelations can deepen our connections to cultural icons (the Beatles no less!), reinforcing that our admiration sometimes might be more rooted in unrecognized ancestral bonds than we realize. Your story beautifully illustrates how personal and public lives can echo each other, and how music and memories can form a profound narrative thread through our lives.

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Absolutely, Kevin, music and memories form a profound narrative thread through our lives. Especially, for some reason, the music of our early days. How lucky I feel that my early music and memories involve the fab four.

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Apr 21Liked by Beth Kaplan, Alice Goldbloom

🥲 So much tenderness, love, and respect in there. Thank you for sharing. What a wonderful way to meet you too, Beth. I look forward to more.

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Thank you! What an interesting site. I was just in England exploring my British roots.

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Apr 22Liked by Beth Kaplan

I think it is hoot the way in which you brought transition points: who am I - genealogy; first love, the Beatles connection ; the morality, the Breast Cancer run. All are touching moments that capture a generation.

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Thank you, Peter.

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So, touching. Thank you, Alice, for this wonderful personal piece. I was a huge fan of the Beatles and my brother, and I had every one of their albums, but oddly enough, I never pictured any as a fantasy boyfriend.

https://writerswrites.com/

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Thank you, Sally. Glad the piece brought back memories for you.

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