October 21, 2009


I like people that have humor. The Icelandic economy meltdown has probably been over the news the last year. Things are really serious here. Prices have gone up 30-50% while salaries haven't and people loose their jobs. We now have fantasy mortgages on our homes and cars that we are hopelessly stuck to because no one is buying anything anymore. There was no rental market before so we're all stuck with increasing mortgages. There are people taking their children out of high school because the can't pay for books. I have a friend that had to move in with his parents because his situation changed (due to inflation) so that he could only afford to pay his car loan. He's an educated guy with a nice job and these days he needs to use most of his salary to pay for: the car loan. The government was forced to agree to take huge loans to be able to pay back the British and Dutch savers that lost their money when the Icelandic banks collapsed. Since Iceland is such a small country (just over 300.000 people) the fantasy amounts, if you split them up, is higher that what the Germans had to pay back after World War II. Luckily since we all have VISA we won't have to go shopping our food with wheelbarrows of money. When the banks went bankrupt the former prime Minister made a famous TV speech where he used the phrase God bless Iceland (gúð blessi Ísland) which really was a statement to stress the seriousness of the matter. Iceland is not a religious country and politicians here do not mention God.
To get to the point this phrase has now become a wall sticker design. Picture from our biggest paper. Available at the international airport in one of the tax free stores. It's kind of cute there was also an article about a lady that teaches cross stitching at an old people's home. She has now started to cross stitch this phrase. The old people also made cross stitching wall pieces with the slogan: helvítis fokking fokk that would translate damn fucking fuck. There was a TV comedy show where a man made a sign to use in the demonstrations outside the parliament and he couldn't really put into words a better slogan that summarized how bad things were. You feel warm inside thinking about the old people cross stitching these things.

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