Six reasons to hate Midsummer in Sweden
Published: 19 Jun 2012 10:24 GMT+02:00
Updated: 19 Jun 2012 10:24 GMT+02:00
While most Swedes are bursting with excitement ahead of their traditional Midsummer celebrations, contributor Anderson Harris explains why he thinks this über-Swedish tradition leaves something to be desired.
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Midsummer Mania is here again, and frankly, I'm sick of it.
Every year it's the same old blathering on about the sill, snaps, and strawberries – what we've been drilled to understand as the requisite ingredients for any proper Midsummer celebration.
And then there is the weather, always with the damned weather.
Lord knows residents in this forlorn land on the frozen peripheries of Europe talk enough about the freakin' weather during the rest of the year.
But in the weeks leading up to Midsummer, the prognosticating and pontificating about Sweden's oft dismal weather reaches a positively fever pitch.
And the Swedish press is more than willing to participate in preying on Swedes' penchant for planning and their near-pathological obsession with what may be falling from the sky.
"Soggy weather for Midsummer this year"
"Here is where you'll find the best weather on Midsummer"
"Get ready to spend Midsummer inside"
This year, the only thing that has been blown more out of proportion by newspapers in Sweden than the chances of Midsummer sun were the national football team's chances at Euro 2012.
It's as if Swedes and Swedish newspaper believe they can simply, by sheer force of will and hopeful expectations, bring about the desired result – whether it be in the skies or on the football pitch.
Sorry Swedes, but as far as I know, there is no correlation between the number of newspaper articles promising good weather and the certainty of sunny skies on Midsummer.
Yet, after all these years, Swedes still don't seem willing to accept this reality.
Of course, weather-related hand-wringing is just one of the Midsummer traditions in Sweden that I would gladly see tossed out like a jar of rotten herring (oh wait, I forgot, in Sweden, people eat rotten herring).
So whether you love Midsummer like Swedes loves their snaps, or, like me, loathe it with a passion most Swedes reserve for sporting losses to Norway or Finland, be sure to check out the gallery below detailing the six reasons to hate Midsummer in Sweden.