Last Night in Sweden…

…Kickstarter project update

As of this evening (04.13.17), the project has been funded!  The first two of the three stretch goals have been met, as well.  Hooray!

The third stretch goal, a major traveling exhibition consisting of the 50 best images, is within reach (Note to organizers:  a visit to the RTP area is expected as you do have a consulate here).  The goal is SEK 350,000. Currently, the pledged amount is SEK 337,489 or $38,423.  The project is short SEK 12,511 ($1,384 +/-).

Of course, one can make contributions at any level.  In terms of rewards, the lowest tier is a pledge of SEK 200 ($22.13 +/-) which will yield a copy of the book in either Swedish or English (supporter’s choice), along with the satisfaction of knowing that this pledge contributed to reaching that magical, third stretch goal.  Only 63 additional people are needed to make this a reality.

Alternatively, if one is feeling unusually generous and/or slightly cheeky, one could opt for the next level by contributing SEK 1,000 ($110.65 +/-).  With that, your name goes in the book and when your copy arrives, you will see it.  WITH YOUR OWN PEEPERS (eller med egna ögon – and I will continue to slaughter Swedish until the third stretch goal has been reached).  Do you know who else will see your name? Orange Foolius and every member of the European Parliament. Mmmhmmm.  Only 13 relatively big spenders are needed in this category.

For those with some serious cabbage, a commitment to the arts, a love of Sweden, a deep respect for journalistic integrity and possibly a pinch of spite, there’s the next tier which requires a pledge of SEK 3,000 ($331.94 +/-).  It comes with all of the bells and whistles offered at the lower tiers along with the signatures of every photographer contributing to the project.  Oh yes it does.  Only 34 remain at this level.

There are only 14 days remaining.  Alternatively, there are 14 days left for nagging.  Do the right thing, please.  :flutters eyelashes:

Last Night in Sweden…

…a shameless plug.

The Swedes are a curious lot; thoughtful, considerate, kind and very concerned about the welfare of others.  They are also fiercely patriotic and damn all to hell if you criticize their society or country.  Not only will they reject such criticism, they will go to extreme lengths to correct the erroneous assumption.  Once finished, they will kill you in your sleep.  Need proof?

So, when President Orange Foolius decided to besmirch their reputation, Sweden reinstitued conscription.  IKEA laced its köttbullar with horsemeat.  There was no sharing of the semlor.  40,000 ocean containers full of Kalles kaviar were dispatched to the US disguised as Easy Cheese.  The government hired scores of actors to set fire to certain areas of Stockholm for the sole purpose of giving Katie Hopkins something else to bitch about.  And for all of the Trumpeting Deplorables hoping that any of this is true:  the conscription happened well before your Dear Leader opened his foodhole, the horsemeat scandal was from 2013, you don’t deserve semlor, Katie Hopkins is a cunt and if there is any justice in this world, you will be eating Kalles (and nothing but) for the rest of your miserable existence.

Seriously, though, Swedes have had it with Donald Trump‘s misinformation campaign about their country.  HAD IT.  Over it.  And an angry Swede is not something you want to deal with for the angry Swede is not only incredibly stubborn and relentless, it’s slightly cheeky, too. Also, largely emotionless but very dignified.  The angry Swede will not wrinkle its clothes or muss its hair in battle.

To that end, a Kickstarter was born.  The project is titled “Last Night in Sweden – The True Story.”  The scope is to compile pictures of everyday life throughout Sweden between the hours of 18:00 – 0:00 (or 6pm to 12am for the unable-to-tell-time Deplorables).  These pictures will be taken by award-winning photojournalists.  That’s right.  They mean business.  These pictures will not be taken by suburban women who have their part-time “photography business” focusing primarily on children or families in bucolic fields, newly engaged couples in burnt out parts of cities and babies in wooden barrels.

Once the photos have been selected by a jury, they will be compiled and published in book form.  The first copy of the book will be presented to Shitgibbon, himself.  Stretch goals are listed on the project’s page and they’re pretty damn nifty, too.

So, for all of you truth loving folks, why not chip in and support this project?  If you love Swedenland, why not help portray it in its wonderfully magical form?  If you want to tell Donald Trump to eat a bag of dicks, kick in a few kronor – or kick in several kronor and your name will be printed in the book.  If your name is American enough, Foolius may even understand it when his grandkids read it to him at bedtime.

Supporting the arts is never an exercise in futility.  In the United States, supporting the arts is going to become the provenance of the private sector so why not get a little practice in entering that credit card number right now?  You can also consider this a multicultural endeavour as you channel Swedish customs: enforcing the truth via art and very dry humor while not taking shit from anyone who doesn’t understand their society.


…the horror, the terror, the recovery.

This escaped me and I do not understand how.  As a reader of several Swedish news sources, I do not understand the delay in reporting such a catastrophe in the era of the 24-hour news cycle.  I suppose, with things on a scale as grand as this, the media was simply performing its due diligence and not alerting the general public until it had thoroughly researched every fact before going to press.  Maybe this is the media’s correcting its behavior as it relates to all of the fake news stories it has been printing since The Angry Yam descended the escalator in Dump Towers and declared his intent to drive the world into the ground.  Or, perhaps, an agreement has been reached?  No news regarding the safety of human beings shall be dispersed to citizens until Our Dear Leader, Orange Foolius, informs us directly, preferably at a rally at an airport with only his most devout followers in attendance.

Imagine my emotional state when I discovered that my second country, the place that occupies my heart, the home to many of my dearest friends was attacked.  Attacked in a manner so violent, the newly sensible media thought about the general public for once and chose to withhold all reporting and publishing of photographs to keep us snowflakes from being triggered.

My friends, shaken to the core and traumatized so significantly, were unable to utilize Facebook’s safety check feature.  From what I have been able to ascertain, neither Kitten nor Blitz were able to access a cellphone signal on Friday night.  Their social media platforms were silent from early Friday evening until midday Saturday.  I can only deduce that PM Löfven is working in concert with the Tang Tyrant’s administration – withholding details until Our Dear Leader addresses his public first.  After all, we’re living in an America First era.

A friend of mine is an editor of a fairly large news outlet which provides news for expats in English in multiple countries in the EU.  It was only this morning that I managed to obtain two pictures of the damage to Sweden on Friday night.  I may be at risk of breaching trust but I understand the source of the photos has been thoroughly vetted and I fundamentally believe they must be shared with the general public.  I do not understand how and why the Short-Fingered Vulgarian is not allowing the New York Times or the Washington Post to print them. From a different source, I managed to obtain a copy of Kim Jong-un’s media management strategy guide which is circulating through the upper echelon of Our Dear Leader’s administration.  This will be shared at a later date, when my request for asylum has been granted.

I hasten to add, the images you are about to see are not appropriate for children.  If you find yourself easily agitated, you may want to stop reading at this point.  And, as I said on one of my social media platforms, when the Red Cross begins its text message drive for donations, please, please donate.  Sweden is a country of 10 million.  It has resources and a very strong social welfare system.  But, it will still need assistance from generous donors in order to appropriately distribute tools for clean up, medical services, water, etc…

snökuken Göteborg

snökuken Göteborg

snökuken Göteborg, recovery & clean up

snökuken Göteborg, recovery & clean up

Jag är Sverige för alltid.


Assembling Gävlebocken.

Assembling Gävlebocken.

It’s the most glorious time of the year!  Gävlebocken has returned!  I feel reborn.

It's a beautiful burn.

It’s a beautiful day…to burn.

Important reference material:

Twitter Feed

Shimmering in the darkness, begging to be ignited.

Shimmering in the darkness, begging to be ignited.

Now, for the important stuff:  Gävlebocken Incineration Sweepstakes is underway on Facebook.  If you wish to participate, leave your desired date of destruction in the comments.  I will let you know if your selection is available.  The prizes:  one beautiful, sparkly virtual trophy and the right to gloat for one entire calendar year.

Please, please burn me.

Please, please burn me.

Call to action:  Gävlebocken must burn this year, motherfuckers.  Do not allow the kommun to break it down and ship it to China (or anywhere else, for that matter).  Do not allow it survive.  Burn this bastard.  Make it so.  Deliver your offering to the High Priestess.  She rarely asks for anything, after all.

Every family has that idiot cousin who has to be invited to all the celebrations. This is Gävlebocken's. He should burn, too.

Every family has that idiot cousin who has to be invited to all the celebrations. This is Gävlebocken’s. He should burn, too.


…did not burn this year.

Okidoki.  It’s Monday morning.  It’s raining.  Apparently, I’m the only douchewad who is working today.  And, the fucking goat did not burn. Why not run over one of my cats (hipster crazy cat lady) and make this day a complete exercise in suckitude?

For those unaware, I have a marginally unhealthy obsession with the julbock in the town square of Gävle, Sweden.  A julbock (Yule goat) is a symbol of Christmas in Scandinavia. Present day, it is a Christmas ornament made of straw and bound with red ribbon.  One could hang small versions on a tree, place larger ones around the base of the tree (we put ours on the mantel because…cats) and insanely large ones are erected in town squares. Here is a picture of Gävlebocken in its unnatural state – intact.


Why so obsessed with a straw goat, you ask?  Well, it’s not because it’s huge and weird. It’s because since its inception, people have tried to destroy it.  This is some insight into Swedish humor (and the Danes say they have none).  A brief (and most notable) history of the destruction for your edification:

1966:  First goat – set on fire.
1968:  Rumor of a randy couple engaging in naughty behavior one evening.
1969:  Set on fire.
1970:  Set on fire a mere six hours after being assembled.
1972:  Collapsed due to sabotage.
1976:  Hit by car.
1978:  Kicked to pieces.
1980:  Burned on Christmas Eve (See, even Santa wants in on the fun).
1983:  Legs destroyed.
1987:  Goat was fireproofed.  Burned down week before Christmas (Nelson Muntz ha-ha).
1988:  Nothing happened.  Hmmm…I was in Sweden in 1988, although not at that particular time.  Maybe.
1992:  Burned after eight days (a Chanukkah miracle).
1995:  Norwegian arrested for attempting to burn it (See how well Norwegians and Swedes play together?  Swedes assign blame to Norway). Actually incinerated on Christmas Day (Again, go Santa).
1997:  Damaged by fireworks.
1998:  Burned in a major blizzard (I admire the dedication to the cause).
2001:  Goat set on fire by American tourist who was jailed for 18 days, convicted and ordered to pay 100,00 SEK in damages.  The court also confiscated his lighter.
2003:  Burned.
2004:  Burned.
2005:  Burned by vandals dressed as Santa and the Gingerbread Man.
2009:  Burned after the webcams were hacked and knocked offline by a DoS attack (yay hacktivists).
2011:  Burned.
2012:  Burned.
2013:  Burned.

For years, I have been watching and waiting for the destruction of this glorious monument constructed of straw.  Each year, we hold the Goat Incineration Sweepstakes where each participant chooses a day when the goat is to be destroyed.  The prizes:  a virtual trophy, pride and the ability to gloat for one entire calendar year.  Some people go fucking apeshit for Christmas.  Some lose their marbles for Chanukkah.  I, on the other hand, freak the fuck out when julbock time arrives.

With the Goat Incineration Sweepstakes of 2014 underway, each morning I wake up and check the webcam.  I also check it each evening before going to bed.  For 28 days, the goat stands – mocking me, giving me the proverbial goat middle finger, suggesting that I suck its proverbial goat dong.  I make notes of who has been ousted from the sweepstakes.  I realize something awful has happened:  we are all losers. The goat that should look like this:
??????????????still looks like this:

What.  The.  Fuck!?!?!?  This is entirely unacceptable.  This is not how I want my winter to begin.  This is not the Yuletide season I know and love.  This is…this is…this is fucking goatshit!  Action must be taken.  I begin to wonder how many frequent flyer miles we have when reality settles in – my fucking passport expired so if anyone is going to do it, it’s going to have to be someone from Team Sverige.

I pull up the webcamera this morning and receive this message:  Tack för ett fantastiskt år! Vi ses igen första advent 2015.  Translated: Thanks for a fantastic year.  See you again on First Advent, 2015.  O rly?  My hopes rise.  Did someone burn the goat?  Could 29 December 2014 be the day that lives in goat infamy?  Immediately, I head over to t3h g00gl3z to search news.  My heart is racing and hopeful.  There is a slight smile on my face.  No one from our sweepstakes would have won but that’s not the spirit of the exercise.  The true meaning of the Yuletide season is scorched goat.

Article from Sweden’s government radio is the first to pop up.  The news…unwelcome. Heresy, actually.  The lede reads:  Gävlebocken monteras ner – får nytt liv i Kina. Translated:  Gävlebocken dismantled – given new life in China.

Holy shit.  There are so many levels of wrong with this. First – it’s not even New Year’s and they dismantled the goat?  Those of us hoping for destruction had three more days.  Gävle cheated!  It cheated us out of our inalienable right to set that bitch on fire.  And sending it to China? To its twin city, Zhuhai, because 2015 is the year of the goat?  Give me a fucking break.  Oh no, Gävle, you’re not that nice of a kommun.  You’re simply a scared, pissy little hamlet and you’re afraid that your precious julbock is going to be incinerated…as it should be.

I look down upon thee, Gävle.  Nästa år.  Nästa år…