How do you pronounce it then?

I loved it when the Swedish police inspector (or whatever she might have been) drove the police car with no hands on the steering wheel. (I’ve come across taxi drivers like that, too.) That’s only because I wasn’t in the car at the time. John Harvey was, I think. The BBC4 programme Who is Kurt Wallander, presented by John, was nicely put together.

Although, when I finally get someone who can say Wallander properly (did he have help?), he then goes and says Mankell with the stress on the second syllable, instead. Grrr… And there were so many Yshtads I nearly strangled someone. It’s Ystad. S. Not sh. And the Resident IT Consultant puzzled greatly over the Chinese sounding name of Jan Guillou, until the penny dropped. Sjöwall & Wahlöö is not easy either. We do it on purpose, to trip foreigners up. The difficult names, I mean. But Ystad isn’t difficult.

Like the BBC Wallander , this was a good programme, with just about the right amount of the right information. I didn’t know that Mankell lives near Gothenburg. That could account for him popping up at the Gothenburg book fair every year. I did know that he lived in the same town as I did, as a teenager. But that’s Borås, stress on second syllable, and not Boris, however nice he may be. (I know it’s not easy, but you can ask, can’t you? The Resident IT Consultant can even say korv [sausage] with a south Swedish accent, and that’s more than my own cousins can manage, even after years of trying.)

One of my excellent crime blogger colleagues had a nice piece on Who Is Kurt Wallander last week, featuring puzzling sausages. As a vegetarian I prefer not to speculate.

Lots of nice scenery, town and country, and a very good explanation, too, for why I feel I simply must be in Sweden in the early summer. (Please explain this to the people who plan English school term dates.) I don’t know where John Harvey has been, not to know of the theories about who killed Olof Palme, but never mind.

However, I would have liked to avoid a repeat of that old belief that Swedish children learn about sex at school from an early age. Here it was stated as fact, that it is taught from the age of seven. I must have been off sick that day. If the BBC say so it must be the truth.

 

5 responses to “How do you pronounce it then?

  1. Thanks!
    I also found the policwoman funny in the car for the amount of times she turned around to look at the passenger in the back. But she was travelling slowly…
    I wonder if there was someone in the car keeping an eye on the road at all times!

  2. >I would have liked to avoid a repeat of that old belief that Swedish children learn about sex at school from an early age. Here it was stated as fact, that it is taught from the age of seven. I must have been off sick that day. If the BBC say so it must be the truth.

    Is that supposed to be an early age? I am 90 percent certain that my UK primary school sat us down in front of a sex-eduction series on video in the second-year juniors… i.e. aged 8. Admittedly it was mostly frogs and chickens, but the last episode finally got to the point. And I think most people’s reaction was… ‘Oh, that! We knew that.’

  3. I agree, Nick. But it was a clip from about fifty years ago, with posh BBC type voice saying this, while showing very young girls in summer dresses. A sort of innocence v sex, and said the way I’ve always found offensive. (‘Ah, but you don’t really know what goes on under the surface in this country, do you?’ That kind of feel.)
    I have in my time taken refuge in the ladies toilets in places, in order to avoid amorous advances based on this kind of “knowledge”. My favourite Italian restaurant in Queensway was full of waiters who “knew” for a fact that Swedes have practical sex lessons in school. It said so in a magazine.

  4. Pingback: Crime tourists « Bookwitch

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