Norwegians are not just good knitters, fisherfolk and farmers. 🙂
Because I was raised in the U.S., most of the Norwegians I knew well were related to me and, except for my cousins, much older than I. The Norwegians I spent the most time with were, for the most part, taciturn farm folk who distrusted people not born and raised in their locale. Not even living in sunny California could loosen up my grim mother!
Thanks to the internet, however, I have been happy (albeit surprised) to see how silly and lighthearted (younger?) Norwegians can be. A Norwegian TV musical game show called “Beat for Beat” hosted two acts that make me laugh so hard I nearly cry every time I watch them (which has been many times, so far). In one episode appears the Nordic Tenors (a trio) yodeling, while on another is Raske Menn (fast guys ) (also a trio) singing “Cuban Pete.” (Now compare these lighthearted performances to the old folk song Højt på en Gren en Krage [High on a Branch a Crow – it’s about a crow who gets shot and dies], the merry little song my mother taught us to sing when we were children!)
I am not sure how funny anyone else will find these. While my daughter and I bellowed with laughter, her husband barely grinned while Thor smiled weakly. Forgive me if it doesn’t make you chuckle but remember that I was raised by a woman who if forced to sit and watch these wouldn’t crack a smile and would be mortified at such a public display of non-serious behavior (seriously). Perhaps that will explain why when I watch these I can’t help but laugh with delight!
(P.S. Notice that none of the performers is wearing any sort of traditional Norwegian sweater. I guarantee you, though, they’ve got at least one or two knit by doting besteforeldre (grandparents) in their closets!)