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Lived in Sweden too long? Posted by on Mar 16, 2012 in Culture, humor, Living in Sweden, Swedish Language

Humerous way of looking at Sweden and Swedes

Most of these phenomenon are probably known to you, I as a Swede know of them but still enjoyed reading, so I thought I’d share. Either you know you have lived in Sweden too long, or you know you’re a true Swede when you recognize yourself in most of the following:

When a stranger on the street smiles at you, you assume:

a: he is drunk

b: he is insane

c: he’s an American

d: he’s all of the above

Your coffee consumption exceeds 6 cups a day and coffee is too weak if there is less than 10 scoops per pot.

The first thing you do upon entering a bank/post office/chemist etc. is to look for the queue number machine.

You accept that you have to queue to take a queue number.

You associate pea soup with Thursday. (You have to be Swedish or at least live in Sweden to get that one)

“No comment” becomes a conversation strategy.

Your front step is beginning to resemble a shoe shop.

You are no longer scared of Volvos and Volvo drivers

You know that “religious holiday” means “let’s get pissed.”

When you’re hungry you can peel a boiled potato like lightning.

You have conversations with people outside when it is –10C.

It no longer seems excessive to spend 1,000kr on alcohol in a single night

It’s acceptable to eat lunch at 11.00. (Isn’t it?)

You find yourself debating the politics of the social democrats.

You have only two facial expressions, smiling or blank.

You wear warm clothing when it’s 25 degrees plus in April – because it’s April.

You wear shorts and t-shirt when it’s barely 10 degrees in July – because it’s July.

You get extremely annoyed when the bus is two minutes late.

Your wife watches TV while you look after the kids.

You’ve been engaged for four years and don’t have any plans to get married.

You assume that anyone who apologieses after bumping into you is a tourist.

You get into a Mercedes taxi cab and think nothing of it.

You understand that when a colleague asks you out for “a drink,” it will probably be a long night with a severe hangover the next day.

Seeing a young woman with lit candles stuck to her head no longer disturbs you.

You start to differentiate between types of snow.

When offered a bottle of beer the first thing you look at is the alcoholic percentage.

You think it is normal EVERYTHING is regulated and you obey the rules voluntarily.

You no longer snigger when your kids ask for a Plopp when you’re out shopping.

Hearing the words f*ck, wh*re, shag and Swedish curses on daytime TV seems perfectly normal.

You expect to find the glove you dropped in February hanging on a post in June.

Pigs say ”nerf nerf”, frogs say ”kvack, kvack” and roosters say ”kuckeliku”

You know that ”Extrapris” goods are cheaper, even though your English mind translates the word as ”extra price”

Your husband is very long instead of being very tall

You ringed somebody yesterday instead of you rang them.

You start looking at socialbidrag (welfare) less as an absolutely desperate last resort and more as a way of life.

You take two hour naps at work and the idea of losing your job never crosses your mind.

You take your shoes off when entering a house while visiting your family in Australia.

You think horse meat is a totally acceptable sandwich topping.

If a friend says that he/she would like to get together with you, you instinctively reach for your pocket calendar.

You ask for a Big Mac and company outside of Sweden.

You say “I’m almost annoyed” when you’re as furious as humanly possible.

A 25 % sales tax on just about everything is no big deal.

VD is the boss, not something you need to get medical treatment for.

You can use bra, fart, and slut in the same sentence without giggling.

You refer to weeks by their number.

You don’t understand why your friend from Mississipi took offence when you referred to him as a yankee.

You have learned how to schedule your bouts of illness so you don’t get sick on weekends. Because if you do get sick on a weekend you have a hard time getting to see a doctor and you’ve wasted a weekend. It’s much better to be sick on a Monday so you can call in sick. That way you can extend your weekend!

You stop thinking you’re being yelled at every time you hear “Hey!”

It is your birthday YOU have to make the cake

You either run for the last pendeltåg at 1 am or choose to party on until 5 am when they start again rather than endure the horrific night bus home, as a taxi ride would require taking out a 2nd mortgage.

You find yourself eating bay-con for breakfast and talking about Bill Clin-ton and taking a trip to Lon-don.

A dime is yummy not currency

You know that “fan” is a swearword, and not an admirer or an air conditioner.

All of your conversations resemble a chess game, with each participant quietly and patiently awaiting the other to finish their turn.

A seven-year-old with his own mobile phone seems perfectly sensible.

Your wallet contains more plastic than a Hollywood superstar.

You can tell the difference between the different radio stations.

You aimlessly chat using SMS.

When someone asks you “Hi, how are you?” you actually take time out to explain how you are.

You are no longer surprised when you see full-frontal male nudity in a commercial or on TV.

You can pick out the real blondes from the fake blondes.

You accept that the best answer for a question is always “Jag vet inte” meaning “I don’t know”.

You think it’s acceptable that builders start banging and hammering at 5.30am.

You are accustomed to every other front page headline in Expressen or Aftonbladet being about some food/drink/activity being dangerous for your health.

You’re used to seeing dog owners picking up the dogs’ heaps in little black plastic bags.

You know that twenty hundred is a year, not an hour.

You don’t even think about what you are saying when you are off to the shop to buy your favorite brand of cat food, and you say, “Be right back love, I’m just gonna go get some Pussi”

You think an hour and a half cycle on your washing machine is a “quick wash”.

You talk of –10C as ”10 degrees cold”, when in Australia +10C would be considered cold. And who else calls +1C, ”one degree warm”!

*Note: Most of this text is found online, therefore credit to them, for putting together a humorous view of Swedes, Cheers!

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  1. Jennifer:

    Fascinating. Some of these are good things to know for my trip to Sweden this summer!

  2. Luke:

    “You take your shoes off when entering a house while visiting your family in Australia” is probably original lol

  3. Sheila:

    Absolutely brilliant!Live in Sweden from choice though.

  4. MichiganLady:

    Jennifer, same again. Nice collection!

  5. andrea polla:

    When old ladies sit in ther bras in the sun and you no longer blush and look away…

  6. Ronalit:

    Some of those where painfully true. Laughed my ass of at the Pussi one.