Cultural Learnings Of… Swedish IKEA!

It has only taken me 3 months but today I visited that most Swedish of institutions… IKEA*!

So this one is like IKEA big time, a MASSIVE store over about 17 thousand levels**. Since I am now Volvo-less I had to catch the train out there, who ever heard of catching a train to IKEA? So i made my way out there and it was AWESOME! Today was a bit special, all the moons aligned

  • It is the end of the month, everyone has just been paid
  • It is a rainy afternoon
  • and its saturday

So it was a MADHOUSE, or indeed a Swedish madhouse, which means it was lots of people moving around in a fairly even, semi ordered manner. Come on, this IS Sweden after all. You know how they have that "one path" through IKEA and you all thought it was so they made you walk past the most merchandise possible? WRONG, your not thinking Swedish enough, you have to be ordered, one in, one out and we can all see everything. In computer science its called a "hamiltonian path" and i love it! Everytime I enter a store I want to see the most things possible in the shortest distance, and when i go to IKEA, they have done it for me!

So i went in there and bought ALL KINDS OF CRAP, it was great, a wok, coffee plunger, cheese slicer, saucepans, towels, its great. IKEA has a reputation al over the world as a "low cost brand" which is strange for Australians because when we go into IKEA at home, the stuff is nice but its not THAT cheap, but somehow, we still all associate it with being cheap. It all comes from right here because in Sweden, it is kinda cheap. Sure they have all kinds of trendy stuff but for every item you can want, be it a towel or a bed sheet or a photo frame or a spatula, they ALWAYS have a model which is dirt cheap and still quite ok. Thats the spirit behind IKEA and really the Swedish way, let everyone have something atleast half decent, its not a bad way to be.

So heres all my new junk, see how this is a yellow bag? The yellow ones are the ones they have in store for your use and the blue ones are the ones you an buy. Firstly I bought 4 of the suckers, you can NEVER have enough IKEA bags, secondly next time I go to IKEA I’m going to work out a way to pinch one of the yellow ones. Oh yeah, im going to be so cool.

* If you want to sound like a Swede, pronounce it "E-KIA" in aussie
** maybe a slight over estimation but not by much

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By Louis Zezeran

Louis Zezeran is an Australian Stand Up comedian and comedy promoter based in Tallinn, Estonia. He was the co-founder of Comedy Estonia, Comedy Finland and Comedy Latvia. Louis writes, does gigs and performs at private events through the Baltics and Finland

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