This will go down as the Summer of Stieg Larsson. Ms. M and I devoured all three of his novels in a marathon month-long reading obsession -– without once visiting a beach. I consider the Millennium trilogy to be the War and Peace of suspense thrillers. I have no doubt that Lisbeth Solander could kick the ass of right-wing CIA action heroes like Jack Ryan or Mitch Rapp.
Now I want to run away to Sweden – or a cabin on the north shore of Lake Superior – so I can drink coffee night and day without regret. That must be why I clicked on Paul Krugman’s blog post, Swede Talk, Swede Talk. He offers several sobering notes:
1. Stockholm isn’t perfect. Even in August, it can rain cats and dogs — which is why I’m still sitting in the lounge blogging over my coffee and herring.
2. More seriously, I wouldn’t want to live here — because I’m not Swedish! Culturally I’m very much an American, Northeast Corridor edition, and even the Swedes tell me that their society can feel a bit claustrophobic. Fundamentally, my home is in the real real America — the multicultural, multiracial, freewheeling society that is built around the American idea. Of course, the “patriots” of the right hate that America.
Oh, well. I’m an American, too, Midwest/Great Lakes edition. Krugman concludes with a clip of Sweet Talk, Sweet Talk by the New Pornographers. My screenreader completely conflates the sound of “Sweet Talk” with Swede Talk.”