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OPINION: The most disgusting habit of the Swedes
Let me stress this (once again): I love Sweden and I love Swedes. So much so I'm marrying one.
Indeed, as Michael Booth wrote in his recent book of the same name, they’re almost nearly perfect people.
But as nearly perfect as they are, here are five habits I wish they'd stop.
1. Leaving snus in the urinals
I don’t really have a problem with Swedes using moist snuff packets, as long as they're fairly discrete about it. But one thing I can't stand is when they spit their used snuff into urinals.
Go to any bar or club in Sweden and you’ll find the men's toilets filled up with the discarded teabag-like packets, sometimes clogging up the drain. I often think about the unfortunate soul whose job it is to clear them out. Gross.
The dreaded snus parcels. Photo: Staffan Löwstedt/SvD/TT
2. Switching to English when we're trying to speak Swedish
Yes, yes, we know the Swedes speak better English than we speak Swedish, but that doesn't mean they need to prove it all the time.
There's nothing more annoying for a Swedish learner who's trying to ply their talents with a Swede than when said Swede simply changes to English mid conversation.
Sure, you might be helping the conversation flow, but how are we supposed to learn Swedish if you don't let us practice?
3. Turning into monsters abroad
Ooh, this one's slightly controversial, perhaps, but I'm afraid it’s true. Swedes are often so humble, polite, and sober when in Sweden. But amazingly, young Swedes especially transform into insane party animals abroad. While this can be a good laugh at times, Swedes sometimes take it to a new level.
This footage of drunken Swedish women on a rampage in Marbella might give you an idea of how they sometimes take it too far…
VIDEO: Drunk Swedish women on rampage reveals why Spaniards hate tourist rentals
Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT
4. Fearing spontaneity like it's toxic
If you want to strike fear into a Swede's heart, knock on their front door unannounced. Or text them that you're in their area and keen for a fika.
It just doesn't work like that in Sweden. The rule is that you have to plan a fika meeting at least one week in advance, and have your last-minute cancellation excuses ready. The Swedes don't like spontaneity, it’s too inefficient and unpredictable.
Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT
5. They're too safe with fashion
Let's get one thing straight, I'm no fashionista. Not even close. But even I can see that Swedes are like sheep when it comes to fashion trends. At a recent outing at the Liseberg theme park in Gothenburg, I counted 14 young women in a row who had tight black jeans, white sneakers, and a hoodie on top. They were almost all paired with 14 young men with similar sneakers (often Converse), shorts with a single roll-up at the bottom, and a plain white T-shirt.
So there you have it. Five bad habits from the seemingly faultless Swedes - who I once again must stress I really do love. But apparently they’re not perfect after all.
Photo: Jessica Gow/TT