North Korea owes Sweden big time
Old Volvo – Photo credit: © Piotr Wawrzyniuk/Shutterstock.com
Yes, it’s true: North Korea owes Sweden around $393 million for one thousand Volvos ‘bought’ back in the 70s. At over three billion kronor that’s no small change and Sweden, to its credit sends a reminder every six months.
Swedish Donald Duck love extends beyond Christmas
Remember our story about how Swedes worship Donald Duck during Christmas? Well, it seems this love is greater than even we suspected: Donald is so popular amongst Swedes there is a law making it illegal to vote for him. Even better, the Donald Duck Party, which promises free beer, was once the 9th most popular political party in the country.
Pick up the phone, call a Swede
Sweden is the first country in the world with its own phone number. All you need to do is dial it and eventually, a random Swedes will be on the other end, ready to chat, answer your questions, and tell you how the weather is.
Erasing those holiday blues
You know how when you go on vacation and you end up with a cold, the flu, or just general aches and pains, ruining all your plans for fun? Well, Swedes understand this better than expected: In Sweden, you can take sick leave during your vacation if you are ill.
I’m gay, you’re gay, we’re all gay
Stockholm Pride – Photo credit: © Stefan Holm/Shutterstock.com
Up until 1979 Sweden classified homosexuality as an illness. Swedes decided it was high time to do something about this so on August 29 they protested by calling in sick to work, claiming they ‘felt gay’. The best part of this? Sweden’s generous sick leave means everyone got paid for feeling gay. And by October 1979 being gay was no longer an ‘illness’.
Feeling kinda cuckoo
The classic Jack Nicholson film ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest’ played in Swedish movie theatres for 11 straight years. Incredibly, Jack never showed up even once.
Rock on, dude!
Rock on! – Photo credit: © Marko Ristic ZT/Shutterstock.com
A Swedish man received disability benefits after claiming an ‘addiction to Heavy Metal’. The man had attended 300 heavy metal concerts in one year, rendering him unable to work.
Elvis has left the Ikea building
Naming a child is serious business and apparently it’s so serious that the Swedish authorities (who approve every baby name) have banned naming children ‘Elvis’ or ‘Ikea’.
Hit the links
Do you like to golf? Do you like to travel? If the answer to both those questions is yes you might want to try out the golf club where the border between Sweden and Finland runs right through the course. Half the holes are in one country and half in the other.
The taxman cometh to a phone near you
As of 2004 you can pay your Swedish taxes by text. Simply send a message from your cell phone and boom, taxes paid.
View Stockholm hopes you enjoyed these Fun Facts about Sweden – stay tuned for more in the future!