Tag Archives: humour

24 Ways To Be More Norwegian

April 27, 2016 | 2 Comments

24 ways to be more Norwegian

  1. If someone asks you how you are, be honest. Having a rubbish time? Elaborate in great detail – and do not under any circumstances try to make it less awkward.

    Anyway awkward reaction
  2. When having a conversation, about anything, make sure to say ‘ikke sant’ a lot. It is a bit like the English use ‘right’. Depending on your intonation, ‘ikke sant’ can mean a range of different things (most on a spectre of ‘Yes – I agree wholeheartedly’); including but not limited to:
    – Ikke sant. Yes, I agree
    – Ikke sant? Do you agree?
    – Ikke Sant! YES
    – Ikke SANT? You’re kidding
    – Ikke sant. Yes, yes
    – Ikke sant?! I hear ya

    ikke sant

    illustration by Jenny Blake


  3. Always bring a matpakke (packed lunch) – yes you could be more adventurous and stop having those 4 slices of bread with sweaty cheese or smelly salami, but why would you?
    Norwegian packed lunch
  4. In autumn, winter and Easter time, never ever go hiking without a kvikk lunsj in your bag.
    kvikk lunsj
  5. Avoid looking directly at your fellow citizens in all urban areas. That includes pavements, public transport and inside shops.

    avoid eyecontact norwegians
  6. But remember to say Hei hei to everyone when hiking or on a Sunday stroll (manners!).
  7. Every spring, make an excuse not to partake in Dugnad (where everyone living in a block of flats, for example, get together to tidy up the communal areas).
    avoiding dugnad
  8. Eat tacos every Friday. It’s the national dish of Norway, didn’t you know?
    tacofredag norway
  9. If you live close to the Swedish border, drive across the border on meat-safari (fleskesafari).
    nordmenn svenskehandel fleskesafari
  10. Never, ever, admit to a Swede being better than a Norwegian at anything. Especially not skiing.
  11. If a Swede beats a Norwegian at skiing it is always because of ‘Smørekrise’ (the way the skis are prepped, depending on conditions). It has nothing to do with the athletes themselves you see. Blame the kit.
    norway vs sweden skiing

    Best friends


  12. Own at least one hi tech brightly coloured coat to protect you from the elements. Wear this every day, in any weather – in Norwegian it is called All Weather Jacket (allværsjakke).
    allvaersjakke norwegian
  13. Make sure to stare at people who go hiking in jeans. They are usually tourists and are not informed of the hiking dress-code.
  14. Every summer, travel to Syden and get a sunburn. Syden = anywhere south of your home town (but usually excludes Scandinavia).
    sunburn norway
  15. Do not be alarmed if someone starts begging you to let them jump in front of you in the supermarket queue – this is completely normal and usually occurs at five to no-more-alcohol-today (no alcohol can be bought in shops after 8pm ever).

    please let me queue jump norwegian
  16. Never, ever, ask someone to pass you something at the table. Just stretch your arms and lean across. One does not bother people by asking them to pass anything.
    reaching across table
  17. Always say Takk for maten (thanks for the food), or mamma will be most upset.
    happy mum
  18. Go to your cabin – Dra på hytta – every weekend. Sure, you’ll spend 4 hours in your car each way but on hytta you must.
    norwegian hytte
  19. Own at least one Norwegian flag.
    norwegian flag
  20. Remember to ‘kose deg’! Literally – cosy you – enjoy and indulge in whatever. A bun with your coffee, an ice cream in the sun, all the sweets on a Friday night.
    kose seg fredagskos
  21. As soon as the sun comes out, run outside and smile yourself silly. Have utepils. Do not, under any circumstances, stay inside on a sunny day.
    enjoying the sunshine
  22. Say Yes in English (but spell it jess).
  23. Drink a lot of coffee. And milk. A glass of milk with every meal.
    mr melk norway
  24. Eat a lot of pølse. Travelling by train? Have a pølse. In the airport? Have a pølse. Watching the footy? Have a pølse. Celebrating the day Norway got its own constitution? Pølse it is.
    polse i brod

    Anything else you can do to be more Norwegian? Let us know in the comments!Wish you were Norwegian? There’s a T-shirt for that. Enter code ‘scandilife10’ at checkout to get 10% off!

A lot of ways to say ‘crazy’ in Norwegian

November 6, 2015 | Leave a comment

A lot of ways to say ‘crazy’ in Norwegian

Hello. So, our Martina is from Norway and she was reading this article the other day (click here) about how the word ‘Texas’ means crazy in Norway.

She has put together a handy list of other ways you can convey the crazy/stupid meaning in Norwegian…

Norwegian expressions that all mean crazy/backwards in some form or other;


Sprø – as in Crisp – ‘Er du helt sprø?’ Meaning: Are you totally nuts?

Pling i bollen – Ding in the bowl, i.e. the sound that comes when an item is dropped into an empty bowl. Meaning your head is empty. ‘Er du helt pling i bollen?’ Meaning: Airhead.

‘Tett i pappen’ – Thick in the cardboard, ie. Thick in your brain.

‘Dum som et brød’ – dumb as a bread. Well, bread is dumb.

200 (1)

‘Å være på jordet’ – Be on the meadow – meaning: You’re so far off

‘Være på bærtur’ – To be foraging for berries – You’re way off

200 (3)

‘Født bak en brunost’ – born behind a brown cheese – an idiom for being a bit slow.

‘Helt Texas!’ Meaning: About a situation being totally crazy, e.g.: The traffic was totally Texas!

Any more to add to the list? Pop them in the comments.

200 (2)



Reasons the Nordic countries win when it comes to Christmas

November 14, 2014 | 3 Comments

We have snow. Real snow. Lots of real delicious fluffy picture postcard snow.


Our countryside looks like this


Santa is from up here.


Okay, so we can’t quite agree where he actually lives. The Danes believe he lives on Greenland. The rest think he lives in Lapland. Or in Finland. Or both. We do know, however, that he lives up here somewhere. He’s one of us.

Father Christmas actually visits us for real. None of this ‘He’ll turn up while you’re asleep’ nonsense: We wait on Christmas eve and there he is. Okay, sometimes he’s had too much glögg, sometimes he looks like your Uncle Björn. Sometimes both. But he’s there, at your house.

We have Christmas elves.


Actually, we have house elves all year round, but we believe in them mostly at Christmas time. Little mini elves with red Christmas hats – Lady elves, male elves… They live in our houses and barns and we put food out for them at Christmas time, because if we don’t, every idiot knows they’ll hide the remote control for the rest of the year.

We get to celebrate a day earlier than everybody else.

Our Christmas is 24th December in the evening. Some say this stems from Viking times when we believed a new day started as the sun went down – meaning at sun down on Christmas eve, we can celebrate. While everybody else has to wait until morning.

We have Julebryg.


Delicious, amazing Christmas beer from Denmark. The fourth best selling beer in Denmark – despite only being on the market 10 weeks of the year. We have that, it’s a thing. Try it.

We have Glögg


Red noses, red cheeks, sneaky kisses under the mistletoe.

It’s also our thing. No, not mulled wine. We don’t add drabs of left over stuff to our glögg, nor do we add half a litre of orange juice. No. We carefully blend spices, sugar and red wine… heat it up and add secret yuletide cheer to every pot. Why is Glögg so much better than mulled wine? Cardamom, pomerans, cinnamon cloves, ginger are the scents of a truly Scandinavian Christmas.


Lucky us, we escape the turkey. Instead we have succulent roast pork… Or delicious sweet ham with mustard. Or dried lamb sticks. Or fish preserved in lye. Eh, yeah, lye. But it’s delicious.

Pigs: Little pigs made of marzipan. Without these, nobody can win the prize in the almond game.

We hide an almond in the Christmas dessert. Find it and get the pig and status of Marzipan Pig Winner. It’s prestigious.

A real tree


Real, like, from the real forest. We don’t do plastic.

No tinsel.

We do clean lines, silver, gold and red. We don’t do flimsy tinsel.

90th Birthday party

Okay, this is New Year, but it’s as important as everything else. It’s a 10 minute sketch from yonks ago. We like to watch it every year. The same sketch, the same exact one. We always laugh. Its shown the same time every year. Okay, it’s a bit odd…

Donald Duck

We like to watch the same old seventies Donald Duck show, every year. At 4 pm on Christmas Eve. Everybody, the same time, every household (at least in Sweden). Also agree this may be a bit odd. In Norway, they watch ‘3 nuts for Cinderella’ instead which is a really old 1980’s Czech Tv movie about Cinderella and her, eh, three nuts.

Tree dancing

We hold hands and dance around the real Christmas tree. Together. The tree has real candles on it and someone usually singes their hair a bit. It all adds to the smell of Christmas.



13th December each year, we have the day of St Lucia, the festival of light. Boys and girls dress in white long robes and form processions in every town, bearing candles. This is the darkest night – and the darkest morning, broken by the bearing of light to fend off the darkness and dark spirits. We drink glögg, a girl is the town’s Lucia Bride and everybody knows it’s Christmas again.

Ginger biscuits.

We own those. They are ours. We rule at ginger thins.

Saffron buns.


Swedes go nuts for anything with saffron, especially saffron buns. But other products containing saffron sell out too. Chocolate with saffron, other pastries with saffron. You can probably get saffron shampoo, too. Maybe. And saffron meatballs. Actually, that sounds gross.



Little apple pancakes with no apples in them. So, like, doughballs. Dipped in sugar and jam. Danes go nuts for these. A great way to ensure you can have another Christmas beer.


The Swedish Christmas coke. Outsells coke in Sweden every year. Coca Cola hates that. Swedes loves that. And nobody outside Sweden understands the obsession with Julmust.


See above but replace Sweden with Norway. Norway’s Christmas soda. It’s a Norwegian thing.

Iceland has 13 different Santas.

Not content with just one, Iceland has 13 Santas, each one a Santa for a different reason and cause. Skyr Santa, Sausage Santa, Door slamming Santa and many more.

Christmas lasts a long time after Christmas.

We don’t put up our decorations until December. We don’t overdo it in the shops. We don’t put up the tree until we need it. And we don’t take it down on the 26th, either. We keep the tree until well into January sometime.

Fra alle os til alle jer:

God (for)Jul

17 Little ways to annoy a Scandinavian person

October 16, 2014 | 49 Comments

So, if you happen to work next to one of us and we have irritated you by borrowing your stapler one too many times, here are little ways you can get back at us.

1. Claim that Sweden, Norway and Denmark is all the same


Scandinavia is Denmark, Sweden and Norway. That’s it. Different countries, different languages, different cultures with some similarities. Finland is sometimes included, but officially, it’s not really Scandinavia.

And no, it’s not because we are small countries, either – you can fit the UK into Scandinavia about five times. So why do you still insist on telling us we’re all the same?

2. When you don’t remove your shoes before entering our house


Because we don’t like dirt being dragged all over the house. Except when there’s a party (although, please ask first and never wear heels on our nice wooden floors).

When you go to a Scandinavian house, expect to remove your shoes in the hallway. It will happen, unless we’re feeling too polite to mention it (unlikely: we’re quite direct, if you hadn’t noticed).

3. What? You don’t like COFFEE?


We drink more coffee than anyone else in the whole world. More than the Italians, more than the French… More than anyone. By quite a massive stretch, too.

We drink tons of it. Strong, delicious filter coffee. And we don’t understand why you can only have one cup a day when our veins are constantly pumping like a bad Basshunter tune. In short, we’re wired from morning to night.

4. Insist Danes are Dutch


Far, far away. Not even neighbours.

5. …and Swedes are Swiss

(wait, Switzerland is next to Norway, right?)


Switzerland is Central Europe. They speak 5 languages, none of which are even close to Swedish. Nothing to do with ABBA or Volvo or blondes.

6. Enter into a discussion with us about mixer taps versus single taps.


We will win that discussion. Even if you fight it, we will win it – passionately. There is no way you can win an argument with about the benefit of single taps. We invented Ikea, we are the kings of common sense design.

And don’t start on the carpet in the bathroom…

7. Tell a Norwegian that KitKats are better than KvikkLunsj


This is such an important point, even though it only really affects Norway. KitKats are so not even close to Kvikklunsj. Don’t compare them, don’t tell us KitKats are superior. Don’t go there.

8. Insist that Eurovision is crap, when we know that it clearly is one of the highlights of the year – alongside Christmas and Midsummer.

TO GO WITH AFP PHOTO "Entertainment-Swed

Without Eurovision, you’d have no songs to dance to at the office party. No Dancing Queen, no Mamma Mia, no Money Money Money. Don’t knock it: We gave cheese to you guys. Be grateful.

9. Do you have polar bears in Oslo?

nyhavnsicebear copy

Yes, of course we do. And also roaming the streets of Copenhagen. Some of us keep them as pets, next to our penguins.

10. When you sing the Swedish Chef song from Muppets.

Just don’t.

Say ‘bork, bork, bork’ and we die a little bit inside.

11. Well, you don’t LOOK Swedish/Norwegian/Danish…


I don’t? And you don’t look Welsh, either.

12. “You’re Swedish? I used to have a Danish girlfriend once…”

Wonderful. Read point one.

13. Schedule conference calls at 11 a.m. (our lunchtime)

We have lunch between 11 am and midday, if you let us. We just do.

Try not to interfere with our weirdness about breaks. This also includes trying to interfere with our need for coffee breaks (fika breaks) at least twice a day: One must make time for cake & coffee breaks.

14. Ask us ‘How are you’ and don’t wait for our answer.

Because, trust us, we WILL answer. In great detail and we don’t understand how to read your polite British nods of evil as we explain about our dodgy knee.

You don’t want to know about out knee? Don’t ask us, we won’t mind. It will remove a lot of social awkwardness for us if we just skip  the ‘how are you’ bit.

15. Be late. We hate lateness. Be on time, every time.


16. You’re cold? But you’re Scandinavian!

Yes, and we feel cold. Just like you. Our veins are not made of ice, they are filled with hot Basshunter coffee, remember?

17. Scandinavian? Do you eat herring, like, all the time?

Every day, all the time, breakfast, lunch and dinner.

(Just kidding: we only eat herring for lunch).

SK_Easter_1297x472_1 2

A selection of great Swedish signs

October 2, 2014 | Leave a comment


The infamous warning for what happens if you take your bin

the wrong way into the lift. The end.


This sign says: Laziness is not a disability.

(From the town of Marknaryd)


A sign in the Swedish Coop saying: “We’ve stopped selling battery hen farm eggs… have a seat in your trolley and you’ll see why”.


This is how we confuse each other. No, not everything in Sweden is logic.


We are really not sure why this one was necessary,

but then again: Just don’t do it.


Homemade sign in the country saying

“Chickens don’t have great traffic knowledge”


Obvious warning at a bus stop in Sweden about the dangers

of what happens if you stand on the bench.


It just means speed humps. Go on, snigger again…


20% of all road accidents in Sweden involve an Elk. Fact.

Quite a useful sign.


The people of Malmö do not like balloons.

Oh no, no balloons on central station, please.


Do not crawl into the big mincer machine. Just don’t.


Unfortunately named Scandi products

July 17, 2014 | 3 Comments

Oh, some of these made us snigger.

A brand of crab sticks in Norway…

4456147404_a0f002eed3 (1)


The name of some biscuits in Sweden…


Bread rolls from Finland…


Snus tobacco in Sweden…


The word actually means ‘big bag’ in Finnish…


Toilet rolls from Sweden (okay, so it was the eighties, but still…)


We stock this.  It’s called Spunk and it doesn’t mean anything in Danish. Salty or fruity sweeties.


Tins of ham product from Norway….


Aptly named starch…



Skum means ‘mallow’ in Scandi lingo…


Oh, it’s just chewing gum


Imagine buying food for your little cat….


Or how about a few bars of Plopp chocolate? It’s actually really nice.




Payment types accepted
Secure Shopping with
Free shipping on orders over £60
£0.000 items