From Iceland — Sour Grapes Issue 04 2008

Sour Grapes Issue 04 2008

Published April 4, 2008

Sour Grapes Issue 04 2008

Dear ladies and gentlemen,
a friend told me Iceland girls look like fairies. Do they?
Kindest regards,
Yacine Azzouz
Dear Azzouz,
Do you mean fairies as in gay, or fairies as in the tooth fairy?

Re: fairies as the nice little flying fairies like kylie minogue in moulin rouge.
Dear Azzouz,
No, Icelandic women look like the Leprechaun. Whoever told you otherwise was lying.

Dear Grapevine ,
I was recently in Iceland, about two months ago visiting family. It had been many years since I had been there last, so I was able to see the country of my birth with fresh eyes.
Much of Reykjavik looks like a dilapitated ghetto, filthy streets , marred with graffiti, and now the pond that has been a place of family enjoyment for many generations has gone to hell too. Aluminum smelters are cropping up everywhere. Iceland has long been admired by other cultures as a place that is “special” far different from the rest of the world, a certain uncorrupted innocence. Now it is loosing all of that, rapidly, because of greed, neglect and bad decisions.
I am half Icelandic and half American I grew up half the time in Iceland, back and forth throughout the years. People boast of how great it is there…maybe these are the ones that are too young to remember, or have not been there long enough to TRULY remember how really great it WAS. And I am not just speaking for my generation. I was born 1961, it’s all the generations that proceeded me, because like in true Icelandic fashion, you hear from your relatives all the stories about what happened in previous generations, it was good really good, and it was nothing like what’s going on now. Something is horribly wrong. Iceland is beautiful, but now she is more like a beautiful woman with a venereal disease, prostituting her own children, and that disease is beginning to show.
This new generation needs to look back to the older generation and reconnect to the values and standards that made our country great. Yes, progress is good, but it needs to be selective and wisely thought out as we are a small country and a small population and a bad thing can turn really bad very quickly. I hope people wake up quickly before it is too late.
Natalie Cota Garcia
Dear Natalie,
I don’t know if what you are describing is an exclusively Icelandic phenomenon. In the words of one of my mentors: things are tough all over. But certainly, there is every reason to reflect on the state of our country and the ways in which we have chosen to conduct our daily business here. But c’mon: “like a beautiful woman with a venereal disease, prostituting her own children.” That’s a little harsh, don’t you think? I’ve never met a mother who prostituted her children who deserved to be put down like that by being compared to Iceland. That’s just cold.

Re: Björk in China
Isn´t it ironic that artists have to do the jobs, we hired politicians for ?!
A very brave move.
Thank you very much.
Dear C. Lehman
What I find even more ironic is politicians doing the job we hired artists to do. Like making a mockery of democracy and putting on absurdist plays in the halls of Parliament.

Hey there,
great site – thank goodness it is in English!! coming over to Iceland this summer and I love Pall Oscar. Wondering if he would be in concert at all the first two weeks in July??? I can not find this info anywhere on line in english.
Thanks for your help. So-o looking forward to my visit.
Dear Janet,
I don’t know Páll Óskar’s plans for July, but here’s hoping he sees this and schedules something for you.

Dear Grapevine,
I worked at Keflavik Airport during that quiet recess between WWII and Korea War. Iceland, then, was a pristine wonderland for avid trout and salmon fishing devotees. Enjoyed myself (early 30s) with rod and reel along some of southern Icland’s best rivers and lakes. Also, of course, enjoyed (immensly) the after hours dining and DANCING venues, including one of the best European style hotels I had visited….the BORG.
Is the Hotel Borg still around to make world travellers welcome?
Is the charm and beauty of the Iceland femine gender still visible…….even to an in-his-late 80s widower whose eyesight has not failed him?
Thinking back, is a forte of mine these days, and the days seem pleasant-er when I can think of the townsquarelike greenary near the Borg and the Althing buildings where I once strolled in the long evenings of June’s midnight sun.
Jack Doyle
Once a navigator with the Keflavik Air Rescue Unit (civilian aviation) of the very early 50’s.
Dear Jack,
It has been a while, hasn’t it? Borgin is still around, although it no longer hosts dances. The rivers and the lakes are still here. Some of them have been dammed, but it will cost you an arm and a leg to fish in the others. Some of the females you associated with at the time are still around. They have retained all their charm, but I am afraid that age has affected their good looks somewhat. Which is a shame, because the new batch of Iceland females looks like leprechauns.

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