Sweden Gets Ready for New Banknotes & Coins

I love European money, well the Euro and the Kronar. They are colorful, different shaped banknotes for each denomination and usually have cute/bizarre images on the notes.

Sweden has a colorful collection with dead people on the notes (you have to be dead – sorry Swedish Chef). But since the notes are 25 years old; there’s been no updates to the printing and security features, the Riksbank (the Swedish Mint) announced a design competition to create a collection of new notes for the country.

The winner was announced last week. The jury chose Göran Österlund’s entry “Kulturresan/Cultural journey” as the starting point for the new bank notes.

Each note has a motif and color which was predetermined by the jury:
20 kronor
Astrid Lindgren

50 kronor
Evert Taube

100 kronor
Greta Garbo

200 kronor
Ingmar Bergman

500 kronor
Birgit Nilsson

1000 kronor
Dag Hammarskjöld

My favorite are these two because of the backsides. They didn’t win but they were cool.

If you notice, the Riksbank will be introducing a new note, the 200 kronor to ease change carrying and breaking of 500kr notes. The new styles will not enter circulation until 2015 and the new coins, pictured below, will enter circulation in 2016.

The new coin will be a 2kr and the lowest coin is the 1kr. Death to the 50 öre!

Security features include sparking, a color shifting ink used in the new US banknotes and motioning, a window thread where micro-lenses are embedded to give the feeling of movement of the subject.

I already like the Swedish banknotes, especially Carl von Linné’s 100kr note with a superimposed image of bumble bee staring at you.

I will have to keep a copy when Mint begins to fade out the current collection.

But what I found really interesting about Sweden’s banknotes, the most popular, circulated note is the 500kr. There are 114 million 500kr notes in current circulation, that is 57 billion kronor out of a total 95 billion kronor in circulation. And there are 28 million 1000kr notes in circulation, amounting to 28 billion kronor. I wonder how much of that is black money.

10 Kilos of Chili Later

I am exhausted. Dead-tired beat. Beat dead-tired. Deadbeat tired. Something like that.

After a full day of cooking with A on Saturday (epic photos below), we went to rock the Chili Experiment cook-off yesterday.

That included four kilos of onions (that’s ten pounds), 12 cans of kidney beans, 25 chilis, 15 cans of tomatoes, and four kilos of venison.

The great tower of food
The tower of food

Onions – please don’t cry…
Four kilos of onions

To say the least, it was awesome! Brooklyn Brewery stuffed us with enough beers to not remember why you were really competing but that you just kept giving out little cups of stuff for people to try. Yum!

The competition was intense: 22 teams. We didn’t win, which was a bummer because I was looking forward to some Riedel glasses and a beer book but we did get a little beer making kit and a special 1 beer from the brewery. {Thanks guys!}

Nearly everyone cooked something delicious and chili related. There was one yellow soupy, veganish-chili that was weird but everything else I could eat over and over and over again.

Not many people dressed up but one team dressed up as giant chilis. They were epic funny. We dressed up as Indians with Viking helmets.

Yes, we looked nuts.

Chili men – indeed hot.
chili men

Setting up our table – go team Northern Lights & Fire!
Our table

Presenting to the judges. That’s Edward Bloom. I think he really liked our candied chili idea.

Photo op with Theo, who ran the shindig. I especially love him because he went all Brookly nuts at one point. And Brooklyn crazy means speaking louder than indoor voice and using a lot of four letter words. Love him!
with T

All in all, this was just the event I needed to get back to having more fun in life. Thanks awesome friends for showing up and The Swede for rallying the troops. And of course, partner in crime who chopped all those onions and didn’t cry!

Welcome Baby {Estelle Silvia Ewa Mary} Princess of Sweden

UPDATE: Feb 27, 15.30. Photos of Princess Estelle at four days old. Awww!

UPDATE: Feb 24, 11.29.

Her name is: Estelle Silvia Ewa Mary !!!

What’s with the W spelling? I thought Swedish normally didn’t use a ‘w’ in the alphabet?

Update: Feb 24, 11.19 The name will be release live today. In the meantime, enjoy this FAIL from the Royal House by calling the new baby David.

At 4.26 this morning, Crown Princess Victoria gave birth to a beautiful baby girl.

baby princess sweden on the way homeMom and baby are doing well and are already on the way home! Geez, that was a quick in and out procedure.

Baby princess has a name and it will be announced on Friday by the Riksmarskalk.

You check DN for the press conference Prince Daniel had.

He caught a fish THIS big. No wait, that’s a baby…
i caught a fish this big... Prince Daniel on baby Princess

Thanks for Your Support for the SOPA Blackout Protest

Just a thanks to you readers who supported our blackout to protest SOPA and PIPA. More than 4.6 million people signed the Google petition alone.

And Twitter.com CEO Dick Costolo, said Wikipedia’s blackout is: “… just silly. Closing a global business in reaction to single-issue national politics is foolish.” Who’s foolish now poop head?

Should these laws ever go into effect, even if rewritten, sites like mine may never see the light of day again. Facebook, Tumblr, Flickr, WordPress, and even Google will have one hellava of a time.

But, first a public service announcement from Senator Chris Dodd, president of the MPAA {Motion Picture Association of America}:
“Only days after the White House and chief sponsors of the legislation responded to the major concern expressed by opponents and then called for all parties to work cooperatively together, some technology business interests are resorting to stunts that punish their users or turn them into their corporate pawns, rather than coming to the table to find solutions to a problem that all now seem to agree is very real and damaging.

It is an irresponsible response and a disservice to people who rely on them for information and use their services. It is also an abuse of power given the freedoms these companies enjoy in the marketplace today. It’s a dangerous and troubling development when the platforms that serve as gateways to information intentionally skew the facts to incite their users in order to further their corporate interests.

A so-called “blackout” is yet another gimmick, albeit a dangerous one, designed to punish elected and administration officials who are working diligently to protect American jobs from foreign criminals. It is our hope that the White House and the Congress will call on those who intend to stage this “blackout” to stop the hyperbole and PR stunts and engage in meaningful efforts to combat piracy.”

I never knew Hollywood hated gimmicks!

For more reading about the United States Congressional bills titled HR 3261 and S968, visit:

Learn More

Information on H.R.3261 – Stop Online Piracy Act at OpenCongress.org

EFF Blacklist

Information on S.968 PROTECT IP Act at OpenCongress.org

In Fight Over Piracy Bills, New Economy Rises Against Old

Reddit /r/SOPA FAQ

Problematic language in the bill pointed out by a redditor.

Video examination of bill’s language.

Get Involved

Electronic Frontier Foundation: Petititon to Stop SOPA Legislation

List of companies that have expressed support for SOPA or PIPA.

List of companies that have expressed concern with SOPA and PIPA.

Take Action Checklist at Stop American Censorship.

Contact Your Representative with info and a widget to find them by EFF and Wired for Change.

Directory of Representatives

Senators of the 112th Congress

Helpful info on making phone calls to your Senator or Representative.

SOPAOpera.org keeps track of where your Congressmembers stand on PROTECT-IP and SOPA.

And a very funny but serious video about the consequences of these laws. Thanks to A for sending it to me.

The irony if this video is taken down for copyright violation.

A Call to All Awesome Bloggers in Sweden

Update, May 9th 2012: I started a Lost in Sweden Moosletter. It’s a monthly newsletter that has content from all around the Swedish blogosphere. Be sure to join it fellow bloggers. The first newsletter will go out mid June 2012.

Hey bloggers! And bloggarna?

I am updating my Blogroll and want to include all of you awesome folks.   Your only requirement is that your blog is about Sweden in some way.

Topics to love…and hate:

  • Fashion
  • Design
  • Food
  • Beer
  • Dating
  • Life
  • Babies
  • Feminism
  • Bantering
  • Travel

Your blog need not be in English or Swedish either as there are many great writers in Spanish, Italian, Dutch, and German that I’ve stumbled across.  You don’t have to be in Sweden either.

Post your link and a blurb about your website and I will update my blogroll and publish an Awesome Bloggers List soon. And do add Lost in Stockholm to your blogroll if you haven’t already. :-)

Swedish Butter Crisis Keeps Churning

Update: Sweden is out of the butter crisis, but Norway is lacking delicious spread.

The comic Scandinavia and the World put the butter shortage best:

There is a problem buying real butter, smör, at the grocery stores. Not Bregott, or Lätta, or some fake margarine that Swedes loves so much, real butter is nowhere to be found. I first thought the shortage was restricted to certain regions because of shipping issues or something mundane.

Nope, Swedes are evidently on a fat-high roll; they are addicted to butter, high fat milk and yogurt.

Seriously, an entire nation of kanelbullar and potatis eaters without butter? Kill Julia Child again.

When I was at Hemköp yesterday, I took a photo of this letter. I missed the bottom half where it discusses the low-carb diet.

According to the newspapers and the dairy industry, the reasons for the empty shelves are that people are into the LCHF diet and that over the last 20 years consumption has declined for full fat, “natural” products.

It makes me wonder how much butter people have to eat to cause a national shortage. Would a low carb diet really be the cause of it? You would be eating butter by the kilos to cause a smörbrist (butter crisis)!

I will blame butter smearing contests as the root problem. Too many Swedes going wild and smearing butter on each other like life size smörgåsar. Definite likely problem. Solution? None really, except buy knäckebröd in the millions of tones and use the butter-smeared people as a dip.

The other ‘real’ reason for the butter shortage is the lack of demand for high fat products. Butter sales have been falling for years and exports increasing. Twenty years ago, Sweden used to ship 25,000 metric tons of butter across Europe. This year so far it is only 1,100 tons. Now, we need to import cream from Denmark. Not daelig.

Here is Sweden’s dairy production for last year:
348,000 cows yield an average 8329 kg milk / year
which yield…
1 million ton of drinking milk
263,000 tons fil and yogurt
110 000 tonnes of cream
103 000 tonnes of cheese
49,000 tons of milk powder
18,596 tons of butter
via NA.
We really need more butter…

I hope the issue will be resolved in time for the holiday season because I want to make lots of cookies. High fat, high carb, delicious cookies.

9/11 Ten Years Later

Tuesday morning was just like any other morning in my second year of college. I had an annoyingly early class at 8AM, albeit very fun – Hindi, followed by a full day of classes to end around 3.30PM.

I normally would wake up around 7AM, do my hair and makeup, wear something stylish (something which could not be said for the rest of the 30,000 campus population) and eat Special K and watch the news on a tiny 15inch tv.

That morning, I woke to terrible dreams. Instead of watching tv, I ate breakfast and in a hurry made the hike to Hindi class at Dwinelle Hall.

Class started at 8.10AM. At 8.15AM, our professor asked if there was an update. There was. “I heard the World Trade Center has fallen. Planes flew into it.” It was true, but no one could believe or know it was true, we didn’t have access to a TV in that classroom.
9/11 world trade center
Photo courtesy of The New York Times

At 9AM when class ended, we all ran out to the main lecture halls in Dwinelle. Students and faculty had set up live feeds from CNN into the largest lecture hall and in smaller rooms. The voices of CNN anchors boomed throughout the corridor.

“It appears the United States is under attack.”

“This video footage is horrifying.”

“At 10:28 this morning, the North Tower of the World Trade Center Collapsed. One hour before, its sister building collapsed.”

“The United States has just announced the closure of US airspace for any and domestic and international flights. It is advised to stay home and not travel until further notice.”

Our minds were in a whirlwind. California may believe it is the beautiful, offbeat daughter of America, but she was a bit slow to catch up on reality. Three hours slow and a continent away from the capital and financial centers of the country.

I ran to my 9:30AM class which happened to be about mass communication. We spent the hour watching feeds and the professor discussing it. The irony was, no one understood the calamity of what happened.

After class, I call my parents who informed me everything was essentially a lockdown on the East Coast. Dad returned home from work early. Friends in Jackson Heights, NY were okay but switchboards across the nation were jammed.

It was psychedelic. In a city that propelled the use of illicit substances to trip out and “be a color,” we all across America were tripping out on the news and the potential ramifications.

Who did this?


Are we going to war?

How many people are dead?


I attended my last class in Geography from 2:00-3:30PM. Our professor took attendance was a primadonna. He said what happened today “was no big deal” and no is allowed to leave the class early. He was an ass who was clueless.

The remainder of the day, I watched TV. It was devastating to watch the city I visited throughout my childhood covered in ashes and fallen glass and souls. My life was and is, belonged to the East Coast, not California.

When President Bush addressed the nation in the early evening for California, it was a definite sign of him pulling together and being the president he needed to be.

Two years later we entered a country that had nothing to do with Al Qaeda. In fact, Al Qaeda did not exist under Saddam Hussain’s regime because if anyone is going infiltrate his country and take his people, it’s going to be his own Baath party.

On that fateful day in April 2003, I was living France and at the internet cafe when students started screaming, “we got him, we got him!” “Who?” “Saddam, that motherfucker was hiding in a bunker.”

Wow, is the war over then? Do we go home? Will we stop seeing dead American soldiers in caskets being loaded onto American cargo planes and dropped off like luggage?

The news shown in France and Europe was tragic, depressing, and violet. What Americans saw on TV was G rated or on occasion PG rated. There was the rhetoric of freedom fighting and fighting the good fight regardless if people disagreed. American television was polarized; the Murdoch empire broadcasted the washed up patriotic, good American fight. The most any America saw were heated debates between the war hawks (those who supported the war) and blind doves (those who disagreed with an Iraqi war and were as a result, unpatriotic and treasonous).

On television in France, I saw a war that had no chance to end. That no amount of “known knowns and known unknowns” would save the lives of our American men and women and destroy Al-Qaeda.

Nothing really mattered though. Truth was overrated and security paramount. Stripping rights of Americans became the norm (the librarians rebelled to submitting information to the government). Those of brown colored skin and hard-to-pronounce names with funny hats were outcasted in what became the next wave of hatred towards immigrants. We did it to the Irish, the German, the Japanese, the Chinese, and now it was the Pakistanis, Indians, Sri Lankans, Afganis and Iraqis all rolled into one. We were the same to the news media and the lackadaisical Fox News addict.

My country lost all sensibilities and rational and turned against its own. Our sentiments were overwrote by fear and ignorance. Our soldiers, mainly young men, fought tour after tour, only to know the Bush administration wanted to exact cuts on their armor budget and ship soldiers by cargo.

We are fascinated by our own mortality and celebration of death.
We are fascinated by wars which occur on foreign lands and American flags we raise high.
We are easily swept up in fear and the unknown.
We forget our past lessons and past sadness.

Today, we should not forget. It is a day to honor the lives lost on the ground and in the air. Above all, it is a day to honor the men and women who serve for our nation and die for our country, regardless whether the war was right or wrong.

For the future, I hope we can come to reconciliation with Iraq and Afganistan. That we allow them to build democratic countries with the assistance of the UN and America. That we educate the Americans on Islamic communities and religion. That not every burka is a bomber. That not everyone who dissents is unpatriotic. And that not every country is immune to terror.

http://www.dn.se/webbtv/nyheter/livesandning-dnse/ – Live feed
http://www.dn.se/nyheter/varlden/sa-lite-visste-vi-en-manad-efter-daden – Slideshow
1,667 Times Square-Style Attacks Every Year
Five unforgettable stories from Ground Zero
Fem vanliga konspirationsteorier

Mouse on a Plane

Everyone has already made the snakes mice on a plane joke when last week, a little mouse was spotted on a SAS plane. The plane did not take off and the flight passengers were rerouted. No one was happy and people complained of waiting hours to be rebooked.

That mouse. He probably has an Interpol Most Wanted warning now. Traveling without papers. Tisk tisk.