From The Desk Of matt pond PA: Popcorn

The 11th matt pond PA full-length, Winter Lives, features artwork that evokes Windham Hill’s catalog. Winter Lives arrives 11 years after Pond’s nearly all covers EP, Winter Songs. Pond, a New Hampshire native, understands the season that inspired Winter Lives, but he needed to write winter songs in the spring, so the album would arrive in context. Given his background, Pond didn’t scratch down too far to find inspiration. “It’s just visceral,” he says of winter. “There’s this coldness and shut-down emotional temperament to people in northern places, but when you get through that, there’s so much depth and reality to northern people.” Pond will be guest editing over the next two winter weeks. Read our new feature on him.

Pond: It is undeniable. It makes every film feel like a masterpiece. (My constant mistake is to take it to bed with me. The pain and scratch of all those bristly bits—there are some lessons of life I absolutely refuse to learn.)

The more complex the world gets, the simpler I treat food. Complication, fear and misunderstanding stay away from my mouth. A proclamation upon my forehead, carefully written in crayon: Keep Out Of My Oral Clubhouse!

The perfect egg is boiled for seven minutes. It’s served on salad greens, the yolk extends itself as part of the dressing, a dash of vinegar, a splash of salt. Coffee, black. Broccoli, steamed.

Sure, a well-crafted meal is like heaven on earth. Yes, food and sex stand steadfast and brave at the cornerstone of our continuation.

But in the last decade or so, the world of cuisine was taken over by a flashing series of screens, superstars shouting from the stovetops—the quotidian ease of fine dining and proper plating. So that every person preens and consider themselves a recognized chef, armed with expensive utensils and expiring spices. I hear too many sirens, I see too many sequins!

Relax. Popcorn is the equalizer—a handful of kernels, a little olive oil and some sea salt and everything is going to be OK. In bed.