Ho ho ho, Christmas is at our door! To celebrate Christmas I'm planning on doing a small Christmas series on some important Swedish Christmas things. First up is julkalendern - the Christmas Calendar. It's a mini series especially made each year that airs every December, starting on December 1st and ending on December 24th, the day we Swedes celebrate Christmas (more on that later). The series air at 7:15 am and 6:45 pm every day and each episode is 15 minutes long. There's a different, new series being made every year, but it always has a Christmas theme, and is suited for kids. Children usually watch the series while eating breakfast and getting ready for school. But despite it being mainly made for children, most age groups watch it - adults, teenagers, elders. Both my 20-year old brother and 67-year old grandma watches it. What's the series about this year? I have no clue, because I haven't watched it in years. Why? 'Cause every year I've forgotten to watch it, or because I've thought the plot for that particular year sucked. My brother is kinda shaming me for this. Yes, in Sweden it is fully possible to have to do a Cersei-walk because you haven't watched a Christmas series made for children. But to my defence I watched it on time every year up until I was 14-15, and it is a great idea. Never does kids wake up with a better mode than when julkalendern airs. What I can tell you about this years julkalender is that it's called Jakten på Tidskristallen - The Chase for the Time Crystal, and that Rikard Wolff is in it (my grandmother made sure I knew that). Since so many people watch Julkalendern it provides a common toping and it spreads a lot of festive feelings. So if you do happen to have Svt1 (the channel where it sends) I sincerely recommend watching it.
Yes, I am going to explain the famous bus etiquette in Sweden. Most of you have probably already heard this phenomenon or seen the picture above. And no, this is not a one time thing, it's how we Swedes wait for the bus everyday. First of all, if you come to a bus stop and there's no one there, you can of course stand wherever you want. Although it will look very weird if you're not standing at the front, because who doesn't want to get on the bus first? If there's however already someone or several someones there, you stand behind the person who's last in line. There is exceptions to this rule, like if there is a great distance (like 10 metres) between two of the people in line. But usually that won't be an issue. Anyhow when you take your place, stand 4-5 metres behind the last person. But you don't have to stay within 5 metres of the closest person, you can stand as far away as you like. Of course you don't have to have any distance to the people in your party, this is more guidelines for how to stand in relation to another party.
The exceptions where you don't have to keep your distance at the bus stop is a) when there is no more room and b) when it's raining.
a) This one is pretty self-explanatory, if there is no more room than there's not much else to do but stand close. What else are you gonna do? Stand in the bushes?
b) This one doesn't concern just a small drizzle, it have to be pouring down in order for it to be okay to stand close. And this only applies to when there is a shelter, if there isn't any shelter at the bus stop the ordinary rules apply because then there's really no reason to stand so close. If there is a shelter stand as far away from the other people as possible. If there is, for example, just one other person in the shelter, you can't stand beside them. Stand on the other side of the shelter. Only ever stay beside someone if the shelter is full.
One final thing; Don't maintain eye contact. That just makes people think you want something, and if you don't, it's just weird.
Football (or soccer if you're American) is an indisputable international success, and is in many countries the number one most popular sport. So is also the case in Sweden. The three most popular football teams are also what some would consider the core of Swedish football. I'm not saying that there aren't any other good teams out there - because there is - it's just simply so that if you're having a conversation about football there's an 80% chans that you're discussing one or more of these three teams. Indeed, most football debate seems to be between the three teams, who also harbours a great rivalry betwixt them. Without further ado I'm going to present the teams.
The first team you need to know about is AIK. Their logo is a almost star shaped, dark blue shield with a yellow wide band diagonally across with their name, and a small fort on top of the shield. Their colours are yellow and black. They've participated in the all-swedish football league during 88 seasons and have become Swedish champions 11 times. AIK's current home ground is the Friends Arena. A nickname for AIK is "Gnaget" - kinda meaning "Gnawer", possibly after their mascot which depicts a rodent. A rude moniker for them is "Solnatattare" - roughly meaning "Solna vagrants". If you want to piss a member off, that's how to do it. Their natural enemy and biggest rival is Djurgården.
Djurgården's short form is DIF and it's logo is a shield broken in the middle diagonally by a red wide band with their short name on, the top half of the shield is yellow and the bottom one is blue. Their colours are blue, yellow and red. DIF has competed in the all-swedish league during 62 seasons and won 7 times. Their current home ground is the Tele2 Arena. As I've previously stated are Djurgården's worst enemy AIK. I have no idea why, I don't think anybody really does. It's just there really, and the absolutely best way to piss a fan off is to talk well about AIK.
Last but not least (or if we're talking about numbers of followers, well, then it kinda is) is Hammarby. Hammarby's logo is a striped green and white flag with HIF across, the flag is framed by a golden laurel. HIF is the short form of Hammarby, and its nickname is Bajen. They've participated in the all-swedish league during 47 seasons and have become Swedish champions 1 time. Their colours are white and green. Hammarby's home ground is also the Tele2 Arena. While they do have a lor of rivalry with AIK and Djurgården they don't have a particular rival.
As stated harbour AIK and Djurgården the main rivalry, but of course Hammarby is also more than capable of participating in it. However, in my experience are ''Bajare" (Hammarby fans) the most chill ones, kinda like the Hufflepuffs of Swedish fotboll while AIK and Djurgården are the Gryffindors and Slytherins and their whole conflict. My advice is to, whenever any of the teams comes up in a conversation, to just nod. Don't even smile, because they may be trash talking another team. And if you wanna participate in the conversation but are not sure just exactly what they're saying - shout "Solnatattare". Then there is a 2/3 chans that you're trash talking the "right" team.