From Iceland — Well, You Asked: Sagas, Slang & Socialising

Well, You Asked: Sagas, Slang & Socialising

Published September 3, 2019

Well, You Asked: Sagas, Slang & Socialising
Photo by
Art Bicnick

Stuck in a tricky situation? Don’t worry. Grapevine’s official advice column is here to help you.

Is it GIF or JIF?

This can all be settled with a history lesson. In the Sagas was the notorious tale of Jón Ívar Friðriksson. While other Vikings told stories of the divine Odin conquering his enemy, whose dead body we now know as planet Earth, radical Jón was descending into madness. Spewing subatomic particle, big-bang nonsense, he gained the reputation of quite the animated fellow. Images of “Jón The Animated” were drawn throughout the generations to warn young people of the dangers of fake news. His initials“JIF” have since been coined to represent all animated images. So given Icelandic linguistics, the correct pronunciation is “YIF.”

What is a Plebbi?

Odin if I know. As a foreigner, it’s been described to me in a few different ways, but the word originates from “plebs” used by the Roman Empire’s upper-class to describe commoners. Now, I guess, it’s used for someone who is pretending to be someone they aren’t—like your bougie name-brand friend, your suave bachelor still-lives-with-his-mom poser friend, or your pseudo-intellectual music-experimentalist friend. Wow, you really need new friends.

What are the best ways to make friends in a new country?

Go out to where the people are! Try new things like volunteering or taking a class. Join one of the many local groups that share your interests to meet like-minded people. Or start your own group that knits Icleandic sweaters for the local cats. Don’t let anyone tell you your dreams are foolish, Karen, live your truth.

For more advice, click here.

Support The Reykjavík Grapevine!
Buy subscriptions, t-shirts and more from our shop right here!

Show Me More!