CONSENSUS CULTURE

A Danish retail chain called “Normal” offers this Ad on a Swedish storefront. Interesting choice for the target audience.

Conformity, most of the time

dievca runs into dichotomies within the Swedish Culture by pushing individuals to ‘shine’ (or standout) when culturally that act is a social kiss of death. Insisting upon change within a well-developed system?
Slow going….but that’s why they hired her.

The US has long been and remains an invented culture, full of disparate and changing parts. Those parts vary by race, ethnicity, class, and region, to name a few demarcations. Identities in the US are lightly held; there is always the possibility of moving to a different geographical and cultural location and reinventing yourself. Lots of Americans are at any time “on the move” in that way.

Sweden, like many European nations, has an old and deeply-rooted culture that manifests itself in dominant group norms. Reinvention is less possible and, it seems, less desirable to Swedes.

Those norms may have grown from the centralist history of their institutions. Sweden has long had one strong national government, a single state church, one public system of higher education, one set of national employment laws.

You must fit in.
Individuality is not usually prized. This may be one of the strangest traits of Swedes because their contribution to popular culture is so disproportionately huge relative to their small population.

Being a pop music superpower (Sweden is the third-largest producer of pop music after the US and UK) shouldn’t sit easily with a nation that frowns on those who drive flashy cars or exhibit any flamboyance. What about IKEA, H&M, COS, & Other Stories. Pop music, Retail and the arts, in general, are about expressing your creativity. How does this fit in with the country of ‘lagom’ (the Swedish word for ‘just enough’)?

Swedes (like many Americans) think that the way they do things is the best – their university degrees are better, their work practices are better, etc.

Annoyingly, unlike Americans, Swedes’ superiority complex is mostly warranted. After all, the Swedes are ahead of the curve on many issues.

But that doesn’t mean that newcomers to the country cannot offer a fresh perspective. Unfortunately, many Swedes have no desire to consider an outsider’s approach or listen to new solutions to old problems.

The attitude from the local Swedes is very much, “Oh, we’ve always done it this way, and we’re OK – why would we change?”

They just waddle along complacently, happy with their lot, not at all bothered that there is a whole world out there that might just, know how to do some things a little better than they do.

Modified and added to a piece from Paul Connolly – “The Local” August 17, 2015

Flying Away

After a lovely moment with Master, dievca is looking for motivational music for the trip. More than half this trip is work – she needs a giddy-up push.  But, there is a little jaunt to Portugal on the itinerary. That’s dievca’s moment to “Fly Away”.

Also, dievca needs to apologize – she’s really been negligent about connecting with comments, people and blogs. Yes, busy is a baloney excuse, she’s really hoping to take a little time each morning to reconnect on the blog. she misses all of you. XO


Coming Up for Air

Underwater Photography by Joseph Seif.

the final push
off the bottom

releases energy
and leaves a trail

the finish
blurs into the beginning

with a gasp
of air

dievca’s final push through an insane week concludes at 4 pm EDT


Back at it on a Monday!


Rejuvenated and ready to try, again.
How ’bout you?
Have a good week!


Master is helping his daughter move…

He’s Grumpy!
After the move Master is taking on IKEA bookshelf build detail:

dievca is just so entertained with the thought.
IKEA was a “Defining Moment” in Master and dievca’s Relationship.
(When dievca and Master survived an IKEA piece)


Running a bit late this morning~

dievca had a working dinner last evening in her apartment.  The number of attendees kept growing and good information was shared.

Monroe at the premiere party for the 1953 film, How to Marry a Millionaire. Robert Mitchum and Marilyn Monroe would start filming River of No Return

And then the bubbly came out:

George Best enjoying a drink.

Let’s just say this morning was sssslllloooowwww…

 

Morning after the Night before~


Being Passionate.

dievca went to a Bat mitzvah, last evening. It was the most formal presentation of a Young Adult she has experienced in the 16 years in the City. What she means is that the Rabbi was passionate, the celebrant was well tutored and it was a lovely service.

dievca is not Jewish and she doesn’t understand Hebrew – but, again, the Rabbi was so passionate and explained the service clearly, dievca paid attention and was engaged.

What it reinforced is that dievca ends up enjoying going on someone’s ride when they are passionate about their Life, Talents, Calling or Crafts.

What are you Passionate about?

Take dievca on your ride!