I usually write this Blog in German. I thought about doing it bilangual, but opted against it for different reasons. But today as one exception to this rule, this one is going out to David and maybe some other Swedish readers...
I am now in Sweden for over 7 weeks and these are my results so far of watching the character of the inhabitants of this wonderful country. Some of the points listed, I am sure you are aware of, others might be only visible to strangers.
First of all, if you are not sure if somebody is from Sweden, let him open a door (even better a toilette door). If he uses both hands in an awkward way, he is!
This my “Do and Don't” list for Swedish inhabitants based on my thorough research:
- If some complete unknown stranger sits all alone, talk to him for a long time and invite him for a drink (non-alcoholic) or even to watch TV on your boat or house, while you are not even around. Nice!
- Do not forget to mention the high alcohol prices in Sweden, cause after some repetitions the stranger will surely produce a bottle with high spirit alcohol contents of some sort.
- Paint every piece of wood related to a house red, every stone yellow.
- As a girl from 8-17 years old, be blonde and wear the shortest white hot pant you can get, no matter of the size of your legs . The bigger the diameter, the shorter the pants, as a guideline: half of the pockets must be hanging out at least! Be sure your legs are as brown as possible, if not use self tanning.
- As a girl over 18 years old be blonde and always carry a baby-buggy with content and at least two more children to your left and to your right. (I was already wondering about a governement ruled reproduction program, to fill the vast empty spaces north of the country? Even in Turkey, I have not seen such a high ratio.)
- As a boy, do not drink, order or expose any non-alcoholic drinks in public no matter what time of the day it is. Exception: a take-away coffee for a young dad, herding the 3 children, while Mommy is having her beers.
- Make it as hard as possible to watch the football world championship 2014 on TV outside your own four walls. Foreigners should suffer the same as you, not taking part in this event. If you are a big hotel in a big city, simply claim you have no TV. If you are a restaurant just turn it off. Say it is broken or mention obscure channels you cannot receive, when being pushed. As a big Swedish broadcaster always and only show the uninteresting games like Portugal-Ghana instead of USA-Germany!
- In supermarkets always buy at least two wagons full of various stuff and take your time for a nice chat with the girl at the checkout, including your children. Everybody else has 6 weeks official holidays too, and nobody will mind waiting 30 minutes to buy 3 tomatoes.
- When someone might come close to a street crossing, brake as hard as you can, even 1 km away.
- Always stay 10km/h under the speed limit except on a boat in the water. Here fits the full throttle rule.
- Switch to accent free american english in an instant, even if you are only three years old to impress foreigners and show them how useless their 12 years of school English had been.
- If you buy a boat make sure it has at least 2 outboards with not less then 250hp each, and always drive as fast as possible to produce maximum waves.
- When buying a car, it has to be an old American V-8 or a Volvo. Period.
- If working in a restaurant be absolute overwhelming the first 4 sentences, then switch to non eye contact standby mode. Allright this is a copy and paste from the US, but the time and intensity of the change is much more improved.
- Make sure the names of your towns are only understandable and sayable in Swedish, no matter how hard one tourist tries.
- Eat your lunch at Midday, and your Middag in the evening.
- Greet everybody you ever meet with a nice Hey-Hey. If in official position use the international Hey-san instead, to not exclude Japanese people from your friendlyness.
- As male between 30 and 50 in summer always wear short sleaved checked shirts in light colours, steel rim glasses and shorts, so noone can remember if he ever saw you before.
- If you sell clothes, make sure some 80s style hard rock or metal CD is running.
- In a restaurant Swedish specialities should only be fish, steak, sausages, hamburger served with anything potato based.
- If you meet other Swedish people in a non urban environment produce a complete barbecue out of nowhere and sit and talk for hours. Do not let strangers see how you do the trick. Wait until they turn around and when they turn back have a nice barbecue already burning. Pass this knowledge to your kids as your father surely did with you. Do not use this talent, when in an urban situation...this is reserved to the Turkish people after all.
- Anything else...yes, make everything as expensive as even tolerable (except lunch buffets and kebabs) and always be the friendliest person on earth.
To be continued!