New Swedish words

Every year, the Swedish Language Institute announces which new words have made it into the Swedish dictionary.

Some of the words are totally new, some have been given a new meaning but all reflect the cultural and political influences of the year.

Here are 10 of the new words from 2017:

1) ‘alternativa fakta‘ – alternative facts. Coined by Trump minion Kellyanne Conway

2) ‘dabba‘ – to dab, a type of dance move

3) ‘döstäda‘ – to death clean. To clean out one’s possessions before death so that surviving family members don’t have to

4) ‘fejkade nyheter’ – fake news

5) ‘knäprotest‘ – to kneel in protest

6) #metoo

7) ‘plogga‘ – to jog and pick up rubbish at the same time

8) ‘serieotrohet‘ – series cheating – to watch an episode of a series without your partner (when you are supposed to be watching it together)

9) ‘skogsbad‘ – a form of therapy where one emerses oneself in the forest to reduce stress. Called ‘shinrin-yoku’ in Japanese.

10) ‘veganisera‘ – to make a vegan version of food that normally contains animal products.

To see the whole list, go to http://www.sprakochfolkminnen.se

Dirty Swedes and their bad language

Image

When watching the aftermath of the long-distance skiing on the TV, one of the participating in skiers described the track as difficult. A lot of snow had suddenly come and the interviewee described it as ‘kräksnö’. Directly translated this means ‘vomit snow’ – big flakes that dump into piles on the floor.

What is it with the Swedish fascination for creating emphasis by adding disgusting words to other words???

Other examples are:

 – ‘Snordyrt’ – Snot expensive

 – ‘Asfult’ – Cadavre ugly

– ‘Skitroligt’ – Shit fun

– ‘Knullrufs‘ – Fuck hair

– ‘Kukjävel’ – Cock idiot

– ‘Fisförnäm‘ – Fart noble (snobby)

 

And you thought Swedes were politely spoken?!  

Ghosts and Ghouls

halloween drottninggatan

Today is Halloween and in Sweden, the tradition seems to be getting bigger and bigger every year: Jack O’Lanterns everywhere, orange and black, masquerades, scary window decorations.

Most people associate Halloween with USA, but the tradition originated in British Isles and was taken overseas by the immigrants.

Because it’s Halloween, I thought I’d share a childhood memory of the tradition from when I lived in the UK. When I was about 10, we were instructed by the teacher to write a poem about each month of the year. Since I have always loved to write, I set about the task diligently. But when I got to October, I got stuck, I could only get the first line…

‘October, now it’s Halloween,

So I asked my mum for help. She sat down beside me, and almost immediately came up with the next line!

‘October, now it’s Halloween
Ghosts and ghoulies can be seen!’

She was so proud of herself. But I laughed hysterically.

You see, in the 70’s ‘goolies’ was slang for testicles! ‘Ghouls’ means ghosts.

Sometimes grown-ups just don’t get it.

Happy Halloween!