Monthly Archives: January 2011

And this is Gunnar Wiklund singing

I left no room for his singing in that post on sitting in front of Gunnar Wiklund of the beautiful voice and the handsome face.

Here is one where we walk hand in hand:

And here he is as Sweden’s Jim Reeves:

Finally, yet another Jim Reeves song:

It’s a shame there aren’t more moving pictures recorded or saved, unlike with so many other stars. I suppose I just have to be content with my front row seat and know that I saw him live, even if he didn’t marry me.

In the lap of luxury

There wasn’t much money to go round in my childhood, but Mother-of-witch made sure we got out and did things occasionally. One way of stretching the budget was for me to sit on her lap when we bought tickets for a show. I hated it, but not as much as I’d have hated not going. And these days I don’t think most places allow children to share a seat.

But boyfriends of the besotted type are good. My best friend’s single mother had one in particular, who has stayed in my mind. I never knew his name and I can’t say I recall his face. But he knew how to win over a woman, so when he bought tickets to see a show, he bought one for the daughter to come along, and another for the daughter’s friend, i.e. me.


So there we were, in Folkets Park in Halmstad in the early 1960s. It was Gunnar Wiklund ‘on the menu’, along with one or two others who have since paled into insignificance in my memory. Gunnar Wiklund was the easy listening singing star of the day, with a voice like Jim Reeves, only better. Handsome. Wonderful. I was going to marry him.


Anyway, there we were. We must have arrived fairly early and sat in the front row on four seats. Four seats! Then comes what I can only describe as a typical Halmstad old biddy, addressing the boyfriend, exclaiming indignantly that ‘these two little girls shouldn’t take up seats before their elders and betters’. ‘Yes, they should. Actually.’ Said the boyfriend firmly. Biddy sloped off. Indignantly.

Now, I had never come across anyone who not only paid for a seat for me, but stood up for me in public like that. I think he was the same one who gave my friend five times as much pocket money as her mother could afford to give her. And I don’t think it got him anywhere, but it got me to the front row at Folkets Park.

NCIS – Recruited

DiNozzo and McGee

Almost back to old-fashioned NCIS this time. Feels like we rarely get the Navy or Marines angle like we used to. We’ve done recruiting officers before, but no reason not to cover it again. (And boys, if it says ‘danger’ on the wall, it’s worth taking heed.)

Father figure Gibbs


Drs Magnus and Mallard


Abby in purple

Was taken aback at Gibbs joining in with the singing of The Wheels on the Bus, but then you never know with him. He can go either way; be totally unreasonable or very human. And he got to do his father figure thing again. He does that so well. But why dress up for a visit to the recruitment office? To show that it’s an important step in someone’s life?

Ducky’s predecessor Dr Magnus was an interesting character. So observant; ‘he just kissed her!’ and ‘that’s a hippo’. He did and it was. It was almost a little too cute to have the ‘these are your memories Dr Magnus’ sequence in MTAC, but it’s good that they address issues such as Alzheimers. Although I could have done without Dr Magnus’s recollection of the corpse and the calamari. One good reason for going veggie.

Director Vance is back, barely. He looks sufficiently ill and tired that you have to assume he might get written out, or at least appear even less frequently than before. Or they can use the possibility of it as a red herring.

The music was really very good. I don’t always notice it, which is as it should be with background music.

What is Gibbs planning to make? It seemed so deliberate that I wonder if it’s meant to reoccur in later episodes. Large square-ish piece of wood. Gibbs looking happy. Unless it was simply the effect of having found  a good recruit for the Marines.

Me, I just want a purple kilt, and the legs to go with it.

(Photos © CBS)

The Killing

The new Danish crime drama on BBC4 was really very, erm, Danish. Nothing wrong or surprising about that, but it’s amusing how Danish you can get. The Killing (Forbrydelsen) is from 2007, and it appears to be a direct descendant of Unit 1 (Rejseholdet) in style and feel. I found the two female detectives even speak the same way. There is something very Danish about the unhesitant tone; they know exactly what they are about and what’s right.

Meyer and Lund in Forbrydelsen

Hardly surprising that Sarah Lund’s new colleague asks in a resigned voice if she has an opinion on what underwear he should use. He can’t smoke, he mustn’t drive too fast, and he should be much politer.

And they do not like Swedes. That much is clear. But we know this already, which is why I so often speak English in Denmark. Like Ingrid Dahl in Rejseholdet Sarah has a Swedish boyfriend. Ingrid’s didn’t last long, and this one doesn’t look too promising either. The scriptwriter (Søren Sveistrup) got in a Norwegian insult, too, by suggesting it’s impossible to tell Norwegians and Swedes apart.

Sarah Lund in Forbrydelsen

The first two episodes on Saturday made for compelling viewing. I’m glad we get two episodes at a time, or we’d be at it for far too long. It’s still going to take us a while getting through all twenty episodes.

Sarah Lund is leaving the Copenhagen police force to move to Sweden to be with the dreadful boyfriend, although her son is not keen at all. A teenage girl is missing and then found dead, and Sarah is coerced into staying and taking the case, having to cooperate with her successor, Meyer.

The politicians in Forbrydelsen

It’s clearly going to be a complicated tale between the police, the (crooked?) politicians in the upcoming election, and the poor girls parents.

Scary at times, and so very Danish. But not too dark. The crime is dark, but I didn’t feel the characters were leading dull or dismal lives. Unless poor Meyer will feel hemmed in by his bossy predecessor with her wonderful wooly jumpers.

Up the wall

I hate to say this but currently NCIS: Los Angeles is far better written than its big brother NCIS. I still love the characters better in NCIS, but that’s from habit rather than that they are more interesting.

NCIS: L A Archangel

Archangel (Why do people think that’s a cool title? It’s so worn out.) was co-written by Shane Brennan, and he doesn’t seem to write much for NCIS any longer. One man can’t do it all, but you sometimes lose something in sharing tasks out. Overwatch the previous week was also pretty good.

Luckily they didn’t cheat on us when they left Callen and Hetty climbing that wall. It’d have been easy to leave, so to continue with them mid-climb in the next episode was more than we had expected. And the climbing was allowed to go on, and we might not have seen the last of it yet. Hetty is like a small fly on that wall!

OK, so the FBI were made to look stupid again, but someone has to do it. Agent Frisbee was, well, amusing. For once the two main guest characters were almost normal, which made a welcome change. There was also enough reference to the current war and its effects, which does not go amiss amongst all the hilarity.

NCIS: L A Overwatch

In Overwatch Nate was mentioned, which could make you speculate on whether he’ll be allowed back in, if only temporarily. His ‘girlfriend’ is on the ditzy side, but her heart is in the right place.

And call me an idiot, but I had never stopped to think why Venice is Venice. Water. Bridges. Venice.

(Photos © CBS)

Why no calendars?

OK, so a few years ago I can almost understand why I couldn’t find any ready made NCIS wall calendars. Or any other kind of NCIS calendar. But now? The show is one of the most viewed in America. Maybe America is full of calendars? Maybe Americans don’t use them?

(Before people write in and tell me that you can get some on eBay; yes, I know. But they are not commercial calendars other than that someone has cottoned on to the fact that you can make calendars with images you don’t own, and sell them online. You can sell almost anything online. And as long as you don’t own the photos, you really shouldn’t make money off them. But there you are.)

Daughter has no particular desire for an NCIS calendar. She likes David Tennant, Doctor Who and John Barrowman. Among others. All very pleasant to look at and available in most calendar shops. I found a half price John Barrowman a few days into January, and he now graces the wall in her room. We’ve had David Tennant in the past. And space. The sky at night. A variety of things.

But me, I want an NCIS or Mark Harmon calendar. Also very decorative for almost any wall. But where can I buy one? Apart from the eBay variety. If I’m going to have a homemade calendar I might as well make it at home. That way I can have the photos I like.

Mark Harmon calendar

It just strikes me as ludicrous that we run our own calendar cottage industry every year.

Anyway, this year’s desk calendar recently made it through production and is now sitting on my desk. The wall calendars got ever trickier with size and amount of ink for printing, so we gave up on those.

Just think, though, how convenient it’d be to just buy one. And surely Mark is as calendar-worthy as a cute kitten or some majestic mountain scenery? Don’t want to start discussing the local fire brigade’s calendar here, but you know…

22-year Eve

There is 40% off the sushi somewhere. Son was intending to celebrate his ‘birthday eve’ with his 40%. Me, I don’t hold with sushi, even when veggie.

It’s a weird notion this, having an eve to your birthday. I think he intends celebrating twice. Good thing, because we struggle so much with gifts around here that he won’t be getting one.

He phoned this morning with the same heavy breathing I always get. He phones while walking to and from places so as not to waste time. Today we didn’t waste much time on having a real conversation, either.

We moved straight onto television. He said he’s just about caught up with NCIS now, after the Christmas hiatus. Then he started on about a psychologist and I wondered where I’d lost him.

In Los Angeles, apparently. He needed to know what’s going on with Nate in NCIS: Los Angeles. I put forward my theories, and suggested he could follow Nate on Twitter. The man’s been gagged, so I assume he is being paid for not appearing on the show.

After some pleasant speculating I moved on to this day 22 years ago. The Resident IT Consultant went to a meeting and I settled down to MASH, accompanied by twinges. (At least I was watching a medical show.)

I complimented Son on avoiding ruining my MASH viewing. We went off shortly after, and then we returned home with a few hours to spare before the next episode of MASH, so I didn’t have to miss a single one due to this childbirth business. Much appreciated.

A film clip

Every now and then Daughter emails me the link to a film of sorts. She’s a bit addicted to film clips, and whereas I don’t mind them, I don’t have the time to keep looking at everything that’s available.

This clip, starring Stellan Skarsgård, had us both puzzled. Me because I wasn’t quite sure where the film belonged, and Daughter because while she could understand what Stellan said, she didn’t have much luck with the others. That’s because they were speaking Norwegian, and Stellan was carrying on in Swedish.

A Somewhat Gentle Man is A ganske snill mann in Norwegian, and I noticed that people on IMDb were also pondering the language situation, seemingly thinking Stellan might know Norwegian all of a sudden. But this mix of Nordic languages between characters is not unusual.

The link above suggests the film is out now, but with the spelling of theaters in American, I’m assuming it’s out in America. Can’t find any indication of a UK release date. It was out in Norway last year. Of course.

I’d quite like to see it, even if I tend to dislike this type of character.

Filip & Fredrik

We’re back to this business of knowing what you don’t know, or even what others don’t know and might want to be informed about. Every time a news presenter on television says ‘and this afternoon the prime minister, Mr Joe Bloggs,..’ I want to scream and say that one of them is enough. We know who’s prime minister, and we know who Joe Bloggs is. Well, a great many of us do, anyway.

It’s the times when no information is forthcoming and it would have been really useful to have, that I think of this the most. Years ago I stopped my subscription to Swedish magazine Vi on that basis. It was getting a bit expensive, and when I had finished reading an interview with two tremendously well know Swedish women (I’d never heard of them, exile that I am) and I wasn’t even sure which one was on the left and which one was on the right in the photographs, that I decided Vi was obviously no longer catering to me, the ignoramus abroad.

OK, so I’ve gone back to subscribing again. Several times. And mostly I’m very happy and like the quality of the writing and feel the photos are suitably labelled. I feel I have learnt something.

Today I finished reading an interview with Filip & Fredrik. I would have finished it earlier had I not delayed halfway through because I felt lost. Loads of pretty pictures of the duo, by Evalotta Fredén. Information on where they were taken. No information which of the Fs was on the left and which on the right. So I still have no clue.

And I’m still left feeling I didn’t quite grasp what these two men have done for Swedish television that is so exciting. I’ve seen their names mentioned often enough, but never seen them in action. But the photos were good, and some of what they said was interesting enough.

Once I’ve written this I will google image them and see if I’m any the wiser. I’m doubtful because I know what happens when I google image myself. I either look like some half naked dominatrix in skimpy black leather (not me) or I’m some famous person who has appeared on this blog and therefore bears my name in the search engine world. Or maybe I really am Colin Firth? Who’d have guessed?

If Vi are worrying, I am not intending to cancel my subscription again. But I may ask for clarification on left and right.

NCIS – Ships in the Night

It’s never a good idea to say words like ‘overboard’ and ‘safe bet’ at the beginning of an episode. Something has to happen. Well, something does have to happen, or we wouldn’t have an episode. But anyway.

The Potomac

Good to see Agent Abby Borin back, but correct me if I’m wrong; I thought she and our Abby didn’t get on, even at the end of the last episode they were in? Now they were the best of friends. Hmm. Agent Abby is very Gibbs-like, in attitude and tastes in coffee and being able to work on no sleep at all. Unlike poor McGee. It wasn’t that long since he slept on the job last time. Sleepy McGee

Shame that the Coast Guard Cocker Spaniel died, but trust Abby to keep track of all enlisted animals. It was a shame that the dead guy died as well. Marine First Lieutenant (phew) Nolan seemed really nice. I wish they didn’t poke long straws into the bullet holes, though. It’s a bit eurgh.

Gibbs and Abby Borin

Almost romantic that Gibbs brought Agent Abby clean clothes, and she didn’t kick up a fuss about getting changed. It was rather like old-fashioned westerns, where the beautiful lady takes her clothes off behind a screen. Bits of boat do the same job. And speaking of clothes it might not have been coincidence that the waiters wore mustard coloured waistcoats, visible within seconds of DiNozzo going on about Colonel Mustard. Tasteless as usual. DiNozzo, not mustard.

So human (why that should come as a surprise, I don’t know) that NCIS (the real one) offers comp time just like more boring workplaces. And just think what they could get up to if DiNozzo took time in lieu.

Three rule #1 is at least one too many. I’ll allow two of them seeing as there were two people with rules. But it wasn’t Agent Abby’s rule #1 that was broken, it was Gibbs’s rule #1. Only one of them; never put suspects together. Works well, though.

Gibbs and 'Abses'

As Gibbs said to the ladies, ‘Abses, that is good work’. But our Abby did go through quite a few Caf-Pows for it, even if it wasn’t ‘the record’ of which we don’t talk.

What was Di Nozzo doing with his rucksack on inside his coat? Hunchback of the Navy Yard?

(Photos © CBS)