Archive for football

Sweden’s performance in Eurovision and the World Cup 2010

Posted in Sweden with tags , , , on June 1, 2010 by Stephen Johnson (Jonk87)

The irony is in the title because there wasn’t one, just like there won’t be a world cup. What IS going on Sweden?

Sweden have always been one of the most successful countries in Eurovision, winning it four times since their first appearance in 1958. They also failed to qualify for the world cup, even though they have one of the best players in the world, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, playing for them. I haven’t seen him play much this season but he is amazing on Fifa and Pro Evolution so he must therefore still be at his best.

I have never visited a nation so enthusiastic about Eurovision before (they have Eurovision parties) and I know the people there are passionate about their footy; they must be devastated. If any consolation, England finished last in Eurovision but that’s different because we are proud of sucking at Eurovision and where it matters (the world cup) we are stronger than ever with Fabio Capello .

So tell me. What’s going on over there people? Defend your country! Or, just spend the summer supporting Denmark. (The team that helped to knock you out and qualify)

Gå Danmark!!!!!

Learning the Swedish language

Posted in Sweden with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 6, 2010 by Stephen Johnson (Jonk87)

In case you were unaware, my girlfriend (Caroline) is Swedish, and occasionally we visit her family in Lund. The last time we visited, her parents expected me to know some of the Swedish language. This left me embarrassed as I had to admit that my ability to speak in their language was poor at best. To make things worse, under interrogation, the words that I thought I knew, I  forgot when put on the spot.

This experience not only left me looking like I lacked intelligence, it also make me look like I was ignorant of their culture. The latter, is at least true. My last visit to Sweden was four months ago and if anything I know even less of the language now than I did then.

This is a serious problem, the next time I visit they are going to expect me to be able to understand a variety of different words at least speak a few sentences.

So what’s the solution? I was running this morning in the gym and saw a commercial about Rosetta Stone – “It helps you to learn a new language naturally, the way you learn your native language as a child.”

The commercial looked pretty cool, it featured some kids throwing a ball about – Seeming a lot easier to use than the CD I currently have which pronounces words and then expects you to remember them. The problem is, the program costs £169, and that’s only for level 1.

I probably only need to master level 1 to gain approval from the parents – Is that worth £169?

For the value of a language program, I could buy: four nights out with my mates drinking; six Newcastle tickets for home matches and a balti pie to eat during every half-time; a years membership at my local gym; One copy of my University lecturer’s book, Online Public Relations, for £17.94 at Amazon and 300 cups of coffee from the University canteen to drink while I read it; one night at Aspers Casino or many other alternatives.

This decision is even harder than the one I had to make when choosing which political party to vote for in the general election.

Below is video advert for Rosetta Stone, pretty condescending I think.

Anyone know any cheaper language programs? Please let me know.

Sweden’s World Cup

Posted in Sweden with tags , , , , , on May 5, 2010 by Stephen Johnson (Jonk87)

The title is of course ironic because Sweden are not in the world cup.

Their Scandinavian neighbours, Denmark, pipped them to a world cup spot by one point. Their exit comes down to the fact that Denmark beat them on their home turf – ultimately making it their own fault.

My girlfriend is gutted and she only pretends to like football – god help the real fans over there.

Many Condolences and a video to cheer you up  –  a very funny and bizarre moment which makes some great footage and helps the Swedes to remember that even in dire times they can still be successful.

There’s always 2014.