Friday, March 23, 2007

Mr. Jannson's Temptation

That's my Wacky Packages folder's parody for Swedish Fish. Some of those parodies are pretty lame. I'm in Sweden mode, though, so it makes me chuckle. I'm so in Sweden mode that I special ordered the Mountain Goats album Sweden. The songs have nothing to do with Sweden but the liner notes are a hilarious paranoid rant about the Swede's true intentions (come for the liner notes, stay for the Steely Dan cover).

In 1979's book Meet Sweden Gosta Wadensjo tells us that "the herring dishes are a well know part of the smorgasbord. Amongst the best known of these dishes are herring with onions, marinated herring, herring with dill etc. and the much appreciated 'Mr. Jannson's Temptation' (a dish which is made in the oven consisting of layers of potatoes, anchovies and onions cooked in cream)."
One nice thing about preparing for a Sweden trip is you get to watch a lot of films. I had seen My Life as a Dog years ago, but had forgotten most of it. It's great. Even if you've seen it, if it's been a while rent it for the DVD extra short film Ska vi gå hem till dej eller till mej eller var och en till sitt? (Shall We Go to My Place or Your Place or Each Go Home Alone?). It is very funny.
Kitchen Stories is technically a Norwegian movie, but it gives you some insight into the Swedish psyche.
Kestrel's Eye is a narration-free documentary about some birds that live in a church. I couldn't hack it. It's slooow. It makes that new movie about the monks look like Natural Born Killers. I mean, these birds are natural born killers, but even watching them tear apart a mouse for their chicks was boring.
Together is one of my favorites. Just as Dog Day Afternoon proved a gateway to Elton John, so Together may prove a gateway to ABBA. It also has some great music by Bo Perrson from Trad, Gras och Stenar. Sadly, they are playing Stockholm a week after I leave.
Rick Steves is a dork, but a handy dork.
Great North is a good documentary about the Inuit in Canada and the Sami people in northern Sweden. The Sami used to be called the Lapp and they have lots of reindeer. This was an Imax movie. You get to watch Nanook's grandson build an igloo.
Oh yeah, Bergman is pretty good too.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Gross Story

Tuesday at the doctor's, waiting to get jabbed with anti-tetanus and tested for various nasty things because I cut my hand at work whilst it was submerged in a sink full of vomit (I was wearing gloves, the sink was clogged, I was trying to unclog the sink, "Somebody puked in the sink," the metal drain stopper was busted and twisted and sharp), I heard one nurse say to another in the hall, "Michael Jackson was charging thirty five hundred dollars for thirty seconds of face time. Not a minute, thirty seconds!"

I think I'm going to try to get a Masters in Mental Health Counseling at Antioch. In April I'll start my first pre-requisite class as Seattle Central: Abnormal Psych. Now, I never even took Psych 101 in college, but if I can't ace Abnormal Psych I haven't been going to work the last eight years. And if that's the case, how am I going to pay for Sweden?

Q: What's the difference between an MFA in Poetry and and an Masters in Counseling?

A: Um, exposure to vomit?

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Did I just not get it?

Any other Rob Corddry fans watch "The Winner?"

Thursday, March 01, 2007

I'm going to Sweden. Carolyn can't go because of vacation time. The building in this picture is the Kulturhuset i Ytterjärna Södertälje, or "cultural center." It is is near Jarna, the village where my friend Mattias lives. I met Mattias in India where we traveled together quite a bit. Jarna's a has an umlaut. It is the center of the Swedish Anthroposophy movement. Wikipedia has a nice article about what that is, but all you need to know is that it's Rudolph Steiner's thing. Mattias isn't part of that scene, but it sounds like he knows a lot of those freethinking folks. Freethinking folks equals cool place to live. Even Michael Medved admitted that. It'll at least be a nice place to visit in late April. Walpurgis Eve is April 30, my last night there. It welcomes Spring. They have bonfires all night. Almost a year ago I posted my shock that Swedish kids dress as witches and go door to door for candy...on Easter. Who knows what crazy shit they do for Walpurgis. Leave teeth beneath their pillows? Pack away their summer whites? Stay tuned.
In other news, I got a phone call from Fabio asking me to enter a contest to visit his grotto.