Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Midsummer weekend 2013.

Midsummer is another great tradition over here.
Midsommar. Oh Midsommar.

When you're a child it's all fun and play. You eat good food, decorate a huge pole with flowers and birch branches (Sweden. Birch branches apparently are very important to us), play with the other kids, sing the "små grodorna" = "little frogs" and dance around the pole, family and music and friends.

Then when you grow older you'll eventually find out that that pole is supposed to represent a huge penis and it's not so much fun anymore.

Midsummer is a fertility celebration.
To this day most kids are, apparently, conceived on the glorious Midsummer nights.

I don't dance around that freaking pole anymore, believe me.
I spent a part of my Midsummer weekend like this:

Alex is always looking for a reason to pull down/up his shirt and he has great abs so it's cool though still, come on dude.

Started off innocently and then it just sort of went downhill after dinner.
Look at mah glorious hair and them fabulous glasses.

Love these guys so much.

That would be all. I just really wanted to throw these pictures out there and forget about the penis-pole.
Goodnight lovelies! ()

Monday, June 24, 2013

Taking the student

Good day my poor neglected blog. 

Yes, emphasis on neglected up there. For some reason I haven't checked in for a while and oops, 16 unpublished and unanswered comments (sorry Chriss, Anid and Josephine, and all the bots that have been spamming me telling me to visit their lovely sites, such as "busty blondes posing" or "nose job"). 

I'm here now, shh, don't cry dear blog. All is fine. 
I promise I love you just as much as I love my tumblr. 

Now. I suppose it might be a good idea to explain the rather suspicious title of this post. 
What the hell does "taking the student" mean? 

Let me start by saying that "taking the student" is a both traditional and a rather barbaric Swedish celebration, that goes on for a couple of weeks, once a year. Let me continue by saying that despite it being a somewhat barbaric thing, it has nothing to do with hunting nor capturing students, it has nothing to do with picking students up and carrying them away, making them your property, and it doesn't have anything to do with things you might do to the student of your choice in the bedroom of your choice, either. And let me finish - bear with me on this, I'm trying to be educational - by saying that "taking the student" is Swenglish and shouldn't make sense at all unless you speak both Swedish and English. 

"Studenten" = "the student" = also a word for "the graduation"
"Ta studenten" = "take the student" = "take the graduation" = you get it. To graduate. To be more specific, finishing high school, usually at the glorious age of eighteen. 

"Hey, I took the student this June!" 
"Congratulations on the unemployment!" 

Something like that. Swenglish is beautiful and I love wordplays so nope, not sorry.

Now, how do I even start though? I've literally rewritten this post from this sentence and forward a billion times so I obviously am a little lost here. Past years, as I've grown up, this whole graduating Sweden-style has just been something rather terrifying. I've basically known that it's best to avoid going outside as much as possible during these weeks in the beginning of June, and that's partly because all I've seen of it are drunken teenagers screaming on top of huge trucks while pumping music way too loudly, all over town, you literally can't avoid them, and then of course I've been to my cousins's student receptions and seen them come home drunk after riding those trucks, covered in booze from head to toe, and it goes on and on. You can see why I labelled this as "barbaric."

I was supposed to graduate this year too, but as you may know, I took a year off because of reasons. That hasn't stopped my fellow 1994 comrades from graduating, though, and since me and my best friend are basically siamese twins, whether he likes it or not, it's kind of like I've been taking the student through him taking the student. Though I must say, the more closer information I've gathered from this whole thing, the more relief I've felt about the fact that my student will probably look a bit different.

Let me make another one of those convenient lists;

  1. It all starts with the class fighting over what the theme of the "studentskiva" (= directly translated, "graduation record", but it means "graduation party" or "graduation ball").

  2. The next step is to decide which students should do what - like finding a place to hold the studentskiva, finding a "studentflak" (= the trucks I was talking about) to rent, DJ, catering for the dinner before the studentskiva, and so on.

  3. A lot of fighting there as well, before everything is settled.

  4. The students presents the results of their completed assignments. Here, the insane costs are revealed. And when I say insane I mean it. All together, it can add up to like 80 000 SEK. According to Alex (I just texted him and asked). Good thing is this cost will - hopefully - be paid through the students selling tickets to the studentskiva to their friends and family. Though they have to sell quite a few tickets to save their asses from having to pay up themselves.

  5. The theme of the studentskiva is decided. Some more fighting here, I presume.

  6. Time for some other yummy costs! Like the "studenthatt" you pretty much have to wear, whether you like it or not. The studenthatt, or "studentmössa", is a hat. You might have guessed that since the Swedish word is pretty much identical. So what's up with this hat? It's a special snowflake hat and it's expensive. You order it custom made, and you can choose colors, shape, and if you want to have something written on it or not. Every letter cost 50 SEK, fun, right?

    The studentmössa can cost up to 3000 SEK. I am not kidding. You can get a goddamn laptop for that.

  7. Once everything is settled and ready, it starts for real.

  8. The students call everyone they know, including their distant aunt that might go by the name Agda, to sell tickets.

  9. Chaos and panic.

  10. Finally, the studentskiva. My old classmates first had dinner with their parents, with speeches and the oh so important ceremony of handing out titles to all the students. Alex was voted "the sunrise of the class" which fits him oh so well, considering he's as least pretending to be nice to people's faces before going away with a not so nice look on his face. He's very bitter. One of the reasons we're friends.
  11. The studentskiva goes on with the skiva itself, once the parents have left the building. ES10B - my old class - had their skiva at a place called Wokhouse. The theme was "in the wrong time" (the themes are usually super boring, like "oops how did I get here?" or "from the seventies") and I dressed up like a cow-human from a future where the human race is dying and forced to breed with animals. Basically an excuse to just wear my kigurumi.
  12. People get drunk and dance. I didn't. Alcohol is expensive over here, no way I'm paying for that shit unless I'm out with friends, far away from a skiva.

  13. The studentskiva is followed by a few weeks of some more chaos as the students in charge of arranging and collecting the money to pay for the skiva and the flak (again, what we call the truck-things). Poor Christian almost ended up paying for the whole thing himself since some idiots hadn't even sold one ticket and were refusing to hand in the money "because they couldn't help it that they hadn't sold more tickets, because they didn't have as many friends and weren't as popular as some of the others."

    Did anyone say bullshit? Yes? No? Okay, good.

  14. And so, the student is completed with the "utspring" (= "run out"?). 
Yes, I've written a lot now, but I'm just really fascinated by all this. 
Can't help it. My wordvomiting can't be tamed. 

ES10B and Alex graduated June 7th. 

Not a lot of friends usually join the families of the students to watch the utspring, but since I was supposed to be in that utspring myself with ES10B, and since Alex is Alex, I was determined and excited as I armed myself with wig, sunglasses and camera and hopped on the metro that took me to S:T Eriks Gymnasium. 

Around here it hit me how chaotic the student really is.

As I've already said, I've just grown up glaring at this from a safe distance, and I might have been at a few afterparties with my cousins, but before this day I'd never been at a utspring and hadn't seen how huge the crowds are outside the schools. At first it wasn't so bad, snapped the first picture shortly after arriving, then Alex's mum hunted me down and while we stood and waited for the event to start, the huge parking lot and street quickly filled up with people and soon we were pretty much attached to the fence behind us like band-aids.

The traditional elements were all there, like the signs the parents carry with their own student's baby pictures printed on them (Swedish parents are often cruel and print naked pictures on the "studentskyltar" = "student signs"), the yellow and blue balloons and ribbons, as well as the green birch branches everywhere.

That alone was quite a lot to take in with two pairs of eyes, and then some students added fire crackers and smoke-thingys to the picture, while a couple of other students started banging drums and started dancing, screaming and singing arabic songs, of all things. And then some sort of national anthem started playing, but there was something wrong with the speakers, so it played for like three seconds, then stopped, then started over again.

And somewhere in the middle I remembered how much I hate crowds and just had a panicked little party for one.

Anyway, all utsprings are the same; the graduating classes all wear white clothes (they don't have to, but they do it anyway) and run out of the school while screaming, then meet their family and get bombarded with ugly toys and mini champagne-bottles tied onto necklaces made by yellow and blue ribbons, before they join their classmates to decorate their "studentflak"-truck (the ones I mentioned and have scared me all my childhood, that is). It's often quite fun to see, since the schools usually have big main entrances that the students just flood out from while screaming, all happy and drunk after the mandatory champagne breakfast.

S:T Eriks is a crappy school in many ways, though, one of them being the shape and location of the school. So no big happy utspring for S:T Eriks's students.

They ran out from the nurse's office onto a frikkin' 10m long balcony.
Not very impressive.

And they forgot that Alex's class were supposed to run out with the other esthetic-majors, drama, music, musical (again, S:T Eriks is a special school), etc, so they randomly ran out at the end without even being announced. Even more not impressive.

I was basically like a proud mama when Alex joined us down on the ground despite that disappointment, so it's a pretty fabulous memory, okay. I mean look at him so cute in his mössa and with his skylt just, yes.


I think I managed to keep my poker face though I was just ready to go "wäääähh" and roll around on the ground. Don't judge me, end exams have apparently been murderous and I've been a nervous wreck worrying about my graduating friends - especially Alex.

And, adding to that pile of embarrassing emotions, as happy as I was, and still am, for all my graduating friends, I must admit it stings a little knowing that I might not get to experience this. Not that I won't graduate, but most likely I will be taking courses from home and not be part of a class. Which means that if I were to be a part of an utspring I'd be running by myself and that would be way more sad than to just skip it and go ahead and graduate.

Feeling better about it just writing that.
As long as I graduate I'm just happy to be a part of my bro's student. Oh the cheesiness.

How about those studentflaks then?

Well here they are and the pictures are crappy, because that yellow thing is the tiniest studentflak I've ever seen, it's ridiculous. But it's the only close picture I managed to snap, so it'll have to do!

Imagine that but as big as the trucks on the first picture, and not tiny and not ridiculous.
There you go, that's what they look like.

They're covered in sheets with pretty things like penises, flowers, names and lovely phrases like "fuck you, we're coming to take your jobs." And of course more birch branches, Swedish flags, and blue and yellow ribbons.

ES10B's truck said "best class, worst attendance" - which is very true. 2000 students and those 30 were like 50% of the year's documented student absence. I think there was a penis on there too, not quite sure. Very mature choice of decorations, I must say.

These monsters drive around town for around 4 hours after the actual utspring, one class per truck, and those 4 hours are spent drowning each other in beer. Literally. The trucks are prepped with at least a hundred cans that the students throw, spray, and pour over each other, while dancing, screaming, singing, and killing all the civilians with the loud, horrible music they're pumping from always present the speakers at the back and front of the trucks. My friend Jözz, who graduated last year, told me that her studentflak didn't have any drainage for the beer spilled on the floor, so the truck actually filled up with beer and gave her feet a light frostbite.

Birch branches, war wounds and booze y'all,
Sweden in a nutshell.
That is basically it.

There is of course the "studentmottagning" (= "student reception"). Home of student x + family of student x + buffet table + cake + presents for student x and maybe an emotional speech. But not much to talk about there. The food was delicious on all the mottagningar I attended this year though.

My fingers are getting sore now and I suspect if ANYONE bothered to read this, your eyes most be sore too. So let's end this post with the outfit I wore to Alex's utspring, to squeeze in some fashion in this entry.

Necklace: Homemade. 
Jeans: Help I don't remember. 
Shoes: Taobao. 

There we go! Just one final greeting to my bro and then I'm happy;
Congratulations bro, I love you to hell and back (no hetero).

Oh, speaking of nothing... I know I already wrote this when I replied to previous comments, but thank you for the kind reminder to slap myself take care of my foot. I actually had a similar thing to what started the last episode happening today. I cleaned the crap out of it. 

(And Chriss I suggest you do the same next time you get blood poisoning, seriously woman!). 

Over and out my lovely readers,
especially those who bothered to read this entry, if you exist (  ᵕ̤ɜ)ᵕ̤ᴗᵕ̤ )

Sunday, June 2, 2013

The tale of the foot

So the thing is,
Someone actually e-mailed me and asked me what the hell happened to my foot. 

I've mentioned it a few times (and tweeted about it many, many times, because I'm... me), but this nice little e-mail reminded me that I never actually got to the point. Thank you for reminding me. Don't worry, it's neither a long nor yucky story, it's also a very nice example of how I work as a person. 

= how I don't work, in other words. 

Let me break it down for you; 
  1. I stepped on something, a small piece of glass I suspect, since a couple of days before I'd been carrying a mattress from my room to the livingroom and I literally walked into a mirror and knocked it over, which of course means that it broke. Big time. It pretty much exploded when it hit the floor (I'm clumsy).

  2. After a weird, high-pitched noise and a sting of pain, I looked at my foot, could see something but it didn't look like a big deal. So I didn't do anything about it and just kept walking.

  3. Why the hell didn't I do anything about it?!

  4. I honestly don't know (I'm both clumsy and I make questionable choices in life).

  5. A few weeks went by and it seemed like everything was okay. I didn't think about my foot since it didn't give me a reason to think about it, so to speak, until one fine day (it was probably raining, but it sounds nice to say "one fine day"), it started to hurt. I finally looked at it, and there it was. A black dot right where I'd stepped on the thing that was probably a piece of glass. About the size of a pea.

  6. I still did nothing.

  7. I spent the night at Emilia's house with her and Jözz. For some reason I mentioned "the black thing on my heel" and showed it to them. They were not amused. They told me that I should have it checked immediately, then pointed out that I should have 24-hour surveillance, because I hurt myself so often.

  8. I didn't listen to them and I still did nothing. Of course I didn't.

  9. A few days before we went to Amsterdam, me and my mother were cleaning the livingroom, when I stepped on the cord to the vacuum cleaner, and the pain made me scream. My foot was really hurting by then. I was kind of limping already. Mum was about as amused as Jözz and Emilia were. She immediately called the doctor and we went to the hospital the morning after.

  10. I got an ultrasound on my foot, and they did some other things. I have literally had ultrasounds done on every part of my body now.

  11. They couldn't find anything, said it was probably a mild inflammation. I was sent home with some pills and a follow up-appointment scheduled a week later. We went to Amsterdam. I was limping big time. Around here I finally started to realize that I probably should have been more careful.

  12. Like I wrote in my previous post, when meeting up with Dana and Naomi in Amsterdam, I ended up walking for five hours straight. I was really, really limping by then. Putting pressure on that foot was no option, and it hadn't been an option for at least a week, so my other fot and leg was quite... worn out. By the end of the day I could barely walk at all. And...

  13. ...when I got back to the apartment, there was a blister the size of a cookie under my foot, where the black dot had been. Not pleasant.

  14. Understandingly, I spent most of the Saturday in the apartment eating those huge delicious puddings I found at the supermarket, hopped on one leg all the way home to Sweden on Sunday, got home, 40 minutes later we were on our way to the emergency room after my dad had looked at my foot and squeaked "BLOOD POISONING?!", and the day after that I got sent back to the hospital (it wasn't blood poisoning, fortunately).

  15. They did some yummy things at the hospital but I'll spare you the details. You're welcome. It got better once the surgeon worked his magic, at least. Now after a few weeks of penicillin and limping I can actually walk again. And my foot lived happily ever after.
The end. 

Glorious, huh? I guess this also sums up the end of my Amsterdam trip! So no need for a post on the last two days. A bunch of family stuff and apple pies. Foot. Airport. More foot. You know the deal. 

And so, what have we learned?
I honestly don't even know. I should just buy some bubble wrap and make a suit out of it. 

What to... say now... 

Well, for starters I'm kind of brainwashed from working at the bakery, and working extra as a kitchen slave at my friend's family graduation party all weekend. And on top of that, all week I've been watching way too much Pretty Little Liars, so I don't have much to spit out. Actually watching Pretty Little Liars right now. Mona is back from the asylum and it's pretty tense in school, she found a cow's brain in her locker. Okay. I love this show, but my brain is like a damp, dirty towel. Like a really, really damp towel.

Towel's don't think that much so you can see why this is a problem.

Since fashion is my passion I'll just throw in some pictures from Saturday, with some closet add-ons. 

"Ponies forever" tee from Taobao and dotted skirt from H&M ♪ 

Oh and here's my rubbery face as well. Charming.

No I don't know what happened there either.

Goodnight friends, I hope you had a nice day and that you're less tired than I am.
Rabu rabu (づ ̄ ³)づ ♡