Introduction to stereotypization

There are different levels of Swedish clichés. On the first level: red wooden houses and furniture with funny names. Later on maybe Lucia. Then you even learn about local clichés. I haven’t reached the highest level of chliché-knowledge but yesterday on a pub crawl at university I definitely met two real Stockholm-guys. It has something to do with a perfect not-too-tight ponytail, golden watches and a lopsided grin. And being called Karl Simon shortened to KS.

I met them when I was talking to another Swede, Sebastian, who introduced himself and – crazy idea – pretended to be German. He asked them about Swedish polar bears and wondered how they would survive in summer. Mr. Stockholm seemed unsure if he was serious but decided to turn the whole thing around: he not only told him about the Swedish polar bears but also about the two penguins he had at home. Obviously you can go down the cliché-range even lower. Polar bears must be somewhere on level minus one. The red houses at least exist.

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