E05 – Vegard and the Taco Fridays


timestamped notes

2:22 ~ Rundstykker, or small form factor baguettes, are the breakfast bun with many variants like this one.

6:38 ~ Janteloven is a very strong social norm that downplays individual success and fame and instead values an egalitarian society. This article has a nice summary and commentary on how this norm is adapting to the changing world. It also fits in with Vegard’s admission that the law is not as binding or universal as it may seems.

10:41 ~ Norwegian Tacos and also Tacofredag (Taco Fridays) are a force to be reckoned with. They certainly do stretch the definition of a “taco” but if it tastes good…


12:29 ~ lutefisk is accurately described but here is a great article comparing the specialty dish to a weapon of mass destruction.

13:14 ~ smalahove. Vegard is right, don’t look at pictures of it. It ranks so high on the gross-looking-meal charts that I’ll let the intrepid among you search it yourselves. This is your second and last warning.

13:54 ~ rakfisk returns us to the seafoods.

14:25 ~ the last food we talked about is in the running for being the national dish – fårikål. If this pleases you more than stinky, wobbly fish you can try your hand at this recipe.

16:56 ~ obligatory fjord photo and Svalbard where, incidentally, there’s a post-apocalyptic style seed vault.


20:23 ~ the Government Pension Fund interestingly was planning on removing investment from oil exploration ventures as well. For a list of excluded companies (including Walmart) the Wikipedia article is rather complete.

22:36 ~ The tendency to leave work early on Fridays for family that Vegard mentions is also attested to in this blog about the Norwegian attitude towards work and how it’s balanced with other pursuits.

24:09 ~ If you want to see the idioms in Norwegian:

Å være midt i smørøyet ~ Butter melting in the middle of the porridge

Å sitte med skjegget i postkassa ~ to sit with your beard in the mailbox


We have a lot of nature. A lot of our lives are based around using nature. But we also talked about the family is the core in your life, that keeps you grounded? I think it’s a great way of growing up. It’s a very free country, (a) safe country. You can be whoever you want to be, and it’s accepted, and I think that’s a good It’s a good place to grow up. I really do.

Vegard ~ 22:27

I was pleasantly surprised at some of the differences between Norway and my home country Canada. The (to me) super-egalitarianism has made for some nice perks for the Norwegian people like the Free Roaming Law and the Oil Fund, and Vegard’s remarking that all jobs are important for a society made me think that this viewpoint is more than just a written wish. It seems it would have a very practical effect on how others are treated.