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Stockholm Sucks

A beautiful city, just be sure to avoid the Swedes


Merry Christmas, from Stockholm

My first lesson in the Swedish concept of ‘first come first served’ was waiting in line for the Stockholm School of Economics’ annual Christmas party. This was my first night out in Stockholm. I had just arrived from the United States and expected to be dazzled by the regal charm of Sweden’s elite. The Stockholm School of Economics is the ‘Harvard Business School’ of Scandinavia, and its finance program is regarded as the best in all of Europe.

Christmas Party

Christmas Party

Dazzled I was, but this was like no other Christmas party I had seen before. It was mayhem. What started out as a line outside quickly degenerated into a stampede of people pushing to get inside. Rumor spread through the line that the venue was almost filled and that only a limited number of people would get in.

Gasping for breath, I was pressed from all sides. There were hundreds of people, without any semblance of order whatsoever. People were pushing, pulling, and tearing their way forward at all cost. Shoes were trampled, dresses were torn, elbows where thrown, and I was buried in the middle.

I have never witnessed such rude behavior in the United States.  Especially not at a Christmas party, and especially not by Master’s students at an elite school such as Harvard, Stanford, Yale, or Duke.  In fact, I can’t imagine such behavior being tolerated even in the low class neighborhoods of second tier U.S. cities such as Atlanta or Houston.

This went on for a full thirty minutes before the police were called to quell the rabid crowd. When the dust settled, two people were arrested, at least one girl had vomited in the middle of the crowd, and a couple of minor brawls had ensued. What I witnessed reminded me more of a rugby scum than a Christmas party. But my years playing flanker in college served me well. Other than a little puke on my pants, I emerged, unscathed, and victorious, inside. The Springboks would be proud. Merry Christmas, From Stockholm.

Read on for The Tomato Incident


13 Responses to “Merry Christmas, from Stockholm”

  1. September 13th, 2008 at 8:15 am

    Natalija says:

    maybe you had a bad experience in stockholm, of you go to Gotenberg you will see the people are very nice. stockholm has a lot of stuffy people

  2. December 3rd, 2008 at 6:17 pm

    Heli says:

    yes, we swedes can generally be a cold and unfriendly people. especially at first, but don’t judge all of us that way

  3. December 17th, 2008 at 6:45 pm

    Anonymous says:

    Haha, fan va nice fest

  4. December 24th, 2008 at 11:46 am

    Anonymous says:

    Stockholm sucks man, come to Göteborg.

  5. May 22nd, 2009 at 9:28 pm

    Anonymous Coward says:

    Boy I got news for you,

    Torn clothes, elbows in the gut, and puke… have nothing on the stuff that happens all the time in the States (and elsewhere) where people get stampeded to death by crowds hungry for the latest electronic gadget.,0,6551335.story

    I am not saying that it’s nice to shove people about but Sweden isn’t any worse or better than the States in terms of rudeness. It depends on where you go and what people you meet. People in Texas in general are very hospitable and open while in New York they can be extremely rude and curt. It depends on the pace of life. You should probably travel about Sweden to see what the rest of the country is like rather than stay in Stockholm and be miserable.

  6. January 12th, 2010 at 9:09 am

    Traveler says:

    rude and chaotic…
    try Russia, not only rude, but horribly dishonest and violent.
    truly the scum of the planet.

  7. September 5th, 2010 at 6:15 am

    Adam says:

    Actually sounds like a great party.

    Man, i so really would like to meet you, creator of this blog.
    Just to see what kind of an ignorant and hateful little person you are.

  8. September 21st, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    Rob says:

    lol it all sounded pretty unfortunate until you mentioned the girl vomiting in the middle of the crowd. That made it very rock n’ roll. I think the Swedes get a point for this one.

  9. October 23rd, 2010 at 4:27 am

    Elis says:

    It is not only Stockholm. I have lived in Sweden for twenty years and am married to a Swede. There are people who we know and visit, but no real friends who…Are there when you need them and true real friends. Not even my husbands family. It is not to get used to or to compare Sweden with —say the rest of the world. They are just this way. A social defect or whatever, it is not even to put them down, but if you want loving, loyal long meaningful, warm caring relationships with open, honest and genuine people go to Latin America, Italy or anywhere else because here in Sweden you won’t find it!

  10. January 28th, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    Johan says:

    Great country for education, career, and family life. But winters suck, so do the night life! Swedes care mostly about their closest family or friends, other people are just tools for making money or climbing the social ladder, sad but true. I think this has to do with the extremely high tax pressure, people feel bitter about their hard earned money going to stupid social engineering like welfare checks for lazy people or ungrateful immigrants in an abundant number! That is why we Swedes are not very hospitable to other people, we only tend to think with our wallet and our own amusement. We prioritize our selves because no on else will do it for us! Well, the good side is that we tend to plan our future, educate ourselves and we are far from gullable. Good businessmen but quite lousy when it comes to small talk and other superficial social skills – we don’t care too much about that because we know money matters and in most cases being a “polite guy” does not tend to pay off. Also we don’t care about our extended family as in other cultures, because of our culture and individual generous pension system. Cheers! And Peace!

  11. February 22nd, 2011 at 3:14 pm

    Damo says:

    You got me at “second tier US cities such as Atlanta and Houston.”

    You are easily one of the most condescending, arrogant, selfish scumbags I’ve ever had the displeasure of reading. No wonder you work in finance.

  12. December 5th, 2013 at 5:56 am

    Petra says:

    You made a whole blog about how terrible you think Stockholm is?
    Is this just because you got turned down by that blond cute girl/boy the first night you had the “pleasure” to hang around Sweden’s high class elite? Seems like we are a little annoyed, brother.
    I could say you are stupid and.. yeah, stupid, but I am more considerate than that. I will instead give you some friendly advice;
    Grow up. Don’t hang around at Stureplan. Party like a normal person(Having fun usually works). Stop comparing Sweden to the US(I mean, come on). Don’t be sexist- it is not nice. Maybe you should get some friends? A lot of your time seems to go to this webpage… but don’t show it to the swedes, they may not like it as much as you think.

    You say that you are in your twenties but that can’t be right. You sound like a 85 year old(Swedish if you wish) man with a buttache. Stop hating, jeez.

  13. December 14th, 2013 at 7:36 am

    Astrid says:

    kom igen LATTJ FÖR FAN din jävla jänkare

    ps åk t malmö istället spisseflabbar är djur ds

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