Ebenezer Scrooge: 'Why I hate Swedish Christmas'
Can you feel it? That crisp but comforting chill in the air that signals Christmas is coming! As advent stars twinkle in windows, the glögg flows freely, and the smell of saffron drifts through the streets, everyone in Sweden is full of festive spirit.
Well, perhaps not everyone.
The Local caught up with miserly moneylender Ebenezer Scrooge, who’s here in Stockholm performing in Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol until 23rd December.
He kindly (but not ungrudgingly) took some time out from rehearsing to give us his two pennies’ worth about Christmas here in Sweden.
Välkommen Ebenezer, good to have you here in Sweden! How do you like it so far?
It’s Mr. Scrooge to you. And I don’t care for it. It’s too clean, the Swedes are too happy, and the air is too fresh. A little London smog would do them all some good. This country does have one thing going for it though -- it’s cold and dark. Darkness is cheap, and I like it.
If we’re speaking candidly, I do confess to enjoying a hot chocolate in Stortorget -- that is, until they set up that vulgar Christmas market and then the atmosphere is ruined.
We take it you don’t have any favourite Swedish Christmas traditions then?
Christmas is nothing but a poor excuse to pick a man’s pockets.
That being said, I enjoy the St. Lucia celebrations because I make a good profit lending money to those sickeningly proud mothers dressing their draggle-haired children in ridiculous costumes. Frankly, I’m flummoxed by the whole thing.
I do admire the way Swedes celebrate Christmas a day earlier. It means it’s over with faster and we can all get back to work.
There must be something you like, Mr. Scrooge! What about the Swedish Christmas table? Everyone loves a julbord!
Bah, humbug! Far too colourful, the fish tastes too much like fish and not enough like the Thames. And who needs to eat so many dishes? Give me my bowl of lukewarm gruel any day!
Don’t even get me started on those lussebullar. The next person to offer me one of those vile things should be boiled with his own pudding and buried with a stake of holly through his heart.
Surely you can’t help joining in when you hear a Christmas carol?
I despise all Christmas carols. And the people singing them are even worse. There’s nothing more infuriating than having to get up and answer the door to a bunch of rosy-cheeked buffoons with their saccharine smiles.
Swedish carols are even more distasteful than the English ones. Especially ‘Jul Jul Stralande Jul’ -- what a load of tommy-rot. They’re nothing but a waste of time, and time is money! Particularly when sung by wretched children, I can’t stand the filthy little urchins.
Well, thanks for your time. It was, erm, uplifting. Guess we shouldn’t ask you why people should come to watch you perform in ‘A Christmas Carol’?
People should absolutely come to see the show. It teaches you about love which is what Christmas is all about. The love of money. You just have to ignore the final ten minutes which is mostly poppycock.
A Christmas Carol is performed in English at Blixten & Co in Stockholm until December 23rd. Find out more and get tickets on the website.
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