Saga Vanacek, the young woman who found a Viking sword in a Swedish lake, has written her story. She is commendably practical about her future plans, and has refused the offer to be Queen of Scandinavia.
This month, the archaeologists finally came to search the rest of the lake and they found a brooch that is as old as my sword, and a coin from the 18th century. Then they announced the news and I could finally tell everyone at school. I came back from gym class and the whiteboard said, “Saga’s sword” and there were balloons, and the whole class got to have ice-cream.
I had to give the sword to the local museum – Daddy explained that it’s part of history and important to share it with others. I felt “boo” that it’s gone away, but “yay” that other people will get to see it. I’m going to try to raise some money to make a replica sword that I can keep.
People on the internet are saying I am the queen of Sweden, because in the legend of King Arthur, he was given a sword by a lady in a lake, and that meant he would become king. I am not a lady – I’m only eight – but it’s true I found a sword in the lake. I wouldn’t mind being queen for a day, but when I grow up I want to be a vet. Or an actor in Paris.
Balloons and ice cream are much better than being royalty. I approve.
If you wish you could be a true master of aplomb, you should follow these lessons in how to be more Swedish.
1. Drink a lot of coffee.
Even if you think you drink a lot of coffee, double it right now and still not out-do the average Swede. We drink more coffee than anyone in the world, (except the Finns). Go for strong filter coffee.
2. When you get up in the morning, follow this ritual:
2 slices of crisp bread, 1-2 boiled eggs, a squirt of Kalles creamed cod roe with your eggs. Some sliced cheese, if you are feeling fancy. Drink a large glass of milk. Coffee.
There is a lot more, of course. Much of it seems to be about coffee and food. I speak from experience: this is all true. My wife is 100% Scandinavian (I’m only 50%), and I’ve noticed that she consumes twice as much coffee as I do, and she drinks it twice as fast. Must be genetic.
Or, if you’d prefer, you can aspire to the rigors of being more Norwegian. It’s not easy, but you can look forward to looking down on Swedes. This was also true of my family — even the ones who were half-Swedish liked to tease the Swedes with 20 Swedes ran through the weeds chased by one Norwegian. They overlooked that the song mainly praises the Irish, because as we all know, Knut Rokne is a good Norwegian.
Somehow, the attitude or Norwegian superiority survives the Law of Jante, which Saga Vanacek follows without a moment’s thought.
Warning: I grew up with the Scandinavian customs of a century ago, so traveling to Norway and discovering that they’re now committing the heresy of hot dogs on their lefse was a shock. Cultures change.
By the way, you could also try to be more Finnish, but that would be weird. Only true Finns want to be more Finnish. They wouldn’t have it any other way.