USAers are pretty darn parochial. We have for years lumped all Spanish-speaking countries into one category. They’re all alike, right? That’s the way most Americans view Scandinavians. There are a lot of similarities between the Scandinavian countries, but Scands are fiercely proud of their differences. Perhaps that’s why I’m so entertained by the friendly (and sometimes not-so-friendly) rivalry between the different Scandinavian countries. When I first went to Denmark, I was surprised how many jokes were told about Swedes and Norwegians. So, I would like to collect these Scandihoovian jokes on this page. You will notice that most of these jokes could be told about any group. They are equivalent to the old American ‘Polack’ joke. The first contributions are Finnish as I was lucky enough to run into a Finnish woman (Johanna Seppäläinen) in my Feldenkrais class who would comply with my crazy request for Scandihoovian jokes.
Finnish Jokes About Other Scandinavians
Ruotsalainen oli Suomessa eräässä kapakassa ja vakioasiakas ehdotti hänelle: —
Saat tonnin, jos saan iskeä kymmenen kaljapulloa päähäsi. Ruotsalainen mietti hieman ja lopulta suostui, osittain muun asiakaskunnan vaatimuksesta. Suomalainen iski ensimmäisen pullon ruotsalaisen päähän, sitten toisen ja niin edelleen, mutta lopetti iskettyään yhdeksän pulloa.
— No, milloinkas sinä isket sen viimeisen pullon? kysyi ruotsalainen.
— En minä mikään hölmö ole, suomalainen vastasi, silloinhan joutuisin antamaan sinulle sen tonnin.
Swede in a Pub
A Swede was in a pub in Finland and a regular customer suggested to him:
— «I’ll give you $200, if you let me smash ten beer bottles on your head.» The Swede thought for a while and finally agreed, partly because of the peer pressure. The Finn smashed the first bottle on the Swede’s head, then the second and so on, but he stopped after smashing nine bottles.
— «So, when are you going to smash the tenth bottle?,» asked the Swede.
— «I am not a total idiot,» the Finn replied, «then I would have to give you that $200.»
Suomalainen ruotsalainen ja norjalainen haaksirikkoituivat pienelle saarelle. Saarella asui ihmisssyöjäheimo, jonka vangeiksi kaverukset joutuivat. Ihmissyöjät antoivat heille kullekin viimeisen toivomuksen. Ensin kysyttiin Norjalaiselta. Norjalainen halusi nähdä vielä kerran vaimonsa. Vaimo haettiin norjalaiselle. Vaimonsa nähtyään norjalainen syötiin ja hänen nahastaan tehtiin kanootti. Suomalainen tahtoi vetää yhden sätkän. Suomalaiselle hommattiin sätkä. Sen poltettuaan suomalainen syötiin ja hänen nahastaan tehtiin kanootti. Kun tuli ruotsalaisen vuoro, hän tahtoi haarukan. Ruotsalainen alkoi tökkiä itseensä reikiä haarukalla, ja huusi: MINUSTAHAN EI KANOOTTIA TEHDÄ!
The Smart Swede
A Finn, a Swede and a Norwegian found themselves deserted on a small island. A Cannibal tribe lived on the island, and they emprisoned the three men. The cannibals gave each of them a final wish. First they asked the Norwegian. The Norwegian wanted to see his wife once more. The cannibals went to find the wife. After he saw his wife, the Norwegian was eaten, and the cannibals made a canoe out of his skin. The Finn wanted to smoke one more cigarette. He got his cigarette. After he was finished, he was eaten and his skin was used to make a canoe. Then came the Swede’s turn — he wanted a fork. He started to punch holes into himself, and yelled: «YOU WON’T MAKE A CANOE OUT OF ME!»
Mikä on ruotsalaisten seuraleikki?
Toinen menee laatikkoon ja toinen yrittää arvata kumpi siellä on.
Swedish Party Game
What is a party game played by Swedes?
One Swede goes into a box and the other Swede tries to guess which Swede is in it.
Ruotsalaisessa tehtaassa oli voileipäautomaatti. Sven ei kuitenkaan ymmärtänyt mistä oli kyse. Hän meni automaatin luo ja laittoi siihen kymmenen kruunua ja sai yhden leivän. Ihastuneena hän laittoi toisen kympin ja sai taas leivän. Lopulta hänellä oli jättipino voileipiä.
Eräs toinen työntekijä kummasteli Svenin touhujä:
-Etkö jo Sven lopeta pian?
-Mitä höpötät! Juuri kun olen saanut mahtavat voitot.
The Winning Swede
There was a sandwich machine in a Swedish factory. Sven didn’t quite understand what the machine was about though. He went to the machine and paid his ten kroners and got one sandwich. He was so excited, and paid another ten to the machine and received another sandwich. Finally he had a huge pile of sandwiches.
Another worker was wondering what Sven was doing:
— «Sven, don’t you think you should stop now?»
— «What the hell are you babbling about?! I am just starting to win big!»
Ruotsalainen kulki tiellä ankka kainalossaa.
— Mistä sinä löysit tuon apinan, kysyi vastaantulija.
— Se on kylläkin ankka, väitti ruotsalainen.
— Pää kiinni, ruotsalainen! Puhun ankalle.
The Animal-like Swede
A Swede was walking down the street with a duck under his arm.
— «Where did you find that monkey?» asked the fellow pedestrian.
— «It happens to be a duck.» claimed the Swede.
— «Shut up, Swede! I am talking to the duck.»
The following joke was submitted by Annika Frieberg. I put it up just as she submitted it to me with the exception of a little punctuation editing:
Must be told with sound effects.
A Norwegian, a Dane and a Swede got lost in the woods up in northern Sweden and eventually ended up crossing the border into northern Finland. After a while, as the situation was getting desperate, they ended up parting and going in different directions.
The Norwegian walked for hours and, just when he was getting ready to give up, he found a road. «I’m saved!» he thought and stepped up to try to get a car to stop. But all cars (there weren’t too many) just passed by, ignoring his waving and yelling. Finally he said to himself «Well, I’ll just step out in front of a car and he’ll have to stop.» As the next car was coming, he stepped out in the middle of the road and . . . (here, the storyteller makes the sound of a car coming nearer — swoosh! — and hitting something with front and back wheels — boink-boink! — and disappearing in a distance again). So died the Norwegian.
The Dane was also lucky enough to find a road, but ran into the same problem; no cars would stop no matter how much he jumped and yelled. So eventually he came to the same conclusion as the Norwegian; «That’s it! The next car that comes by I’m stopping through standing in front of it.» Said and done . . . (same sound effects swoosh! boink-boink! and the car disappears in a distance).
The Swede eventually reached a road too, but had no more luck getting the cars to stop than the other two. He decided that when the next car came, he’d step out on the road and get it to stop that way. He heard the car in a distance and bravely stepped out in the road . . . (make the noise of the car coming closer and the front and back wheels hitting the Swede but then make the sound of screaming brakes, make a new boink-boink—sound, new screaming brakes and go on for three or four times that way)
(If you didn’t get it, the Finnish car stopped, backed up, hit the Swede again, and again, and again. The success of the story depends on the imitation of the car sound effects).
Norwegian Jokes About Other Scandinavians
Q: What is the difference between Swedes and Norwegians?
A: The Swedes have nice neighbours!
Submitted by Le Jens
Det var to svenske snekkere som bygde et hus. En av dem åpnet en pakke med spiker og spurte den andre: «Hvorfor ligger halvparten av alle spikrene i feil retning?»
Da svarte den andre: «Din idiot, de skal jo brukes på den andre siden av huset!»
There were two Swedish carpenters building a house. One of them opened a pack of nails, and asked the other: «Why are half of the nails lying in the wrong direction?»
The other replied: «You moron! They are supposed to be used on the other side of the house!»
Submitted by Jonas Grondahl
The Last Viking’s page of Swedish Jokes (Thanks to John Magne Trane for the link.)
The Swedish Joke Page — jokes in English and Norwegian about Swedes, collected by Jan Fredrik Karlsen.
Swedish Jokes About Other Scandinavians
Swedish Jokes about Norwegians from Crille’s Skämtsidan, in Swedish.
Q: How do Norwegians forge ten crown bills?
A: They scrape one zero off a hundred bill.
A Norwegian went to a museum. The tour guide was explaining: «This sword is over 2000 years old.» The Norwegian paused for a second to think about it and then asked: «How is that possible? We are only in the year 1998.»
Q: What did the Norwegian train robbers say while robbing a train? A: Okay, now, get us some guns…
Norwegian was bragging to his friend:
— I just bought a piece of field that is 2 cm wide and 10 km long.
— What on Earth are you going to do with a field like that?
— Grow spaghetti, of course.
A Swede and a Dane were sitting on a park bench smoking a cigarette. It started raining and then the Swede pulled out a condom and covered his cigarette so he could continue smoking. Now the Dane was wondering what it was because his cigarette was drenched and he couldn’t smoke it anymore. He asked the Swede what it was and where he could get some. «They’re called condoms, and you can get them in that pharmacy over there.» The Dane went off to the pharmacy and asked for some condoms. The pharmacist asked him what size he would like. The Dane thought for a while and then replied: «Ones that fit a camel.»
Interpol was looking for an escaped convict in Denmark, and sent pictures of the man to the Danish police. The pictures were taken from both sides and the front. After a few days the Danes replied: «We caught the guys on the left and the right but the one in the middle got away».
Q: Why do Danish people never play hide and seek?
A: Nobody wants to look for them.
A Danish airplane was getting ready to land in Stockholm’s airport. The control tower contacted the pilot and asked for his position. The Danish pilot was surprised and didn’t do anything. Again the control tower contacted the pilot. «Please tell us your position.» Then the pilot understood and answered: «Here I am in the front seat, as always…»
The Danish man had a problem. His wife was coming home on the train but he could not remember if she was coming at 8:40 or 4:80.
1: Do you know how to find a lost Dane?
Submitted by Roland Kylfält
Danish Jokes About Other Scandinavians
Here’s a joke I heard while in Denmark in 1982. My grasp of Scandinavian languages wasn’t as good then, so I hope I tell this halfway-accurately:
There was a guy from Copenhagen who visited Århus and really liked it there. He had a fantastic time, loved the people and even loved the Århus accent and slang. He finally decided that he was going to move there, but he really wanted to be able to speak like a native. He read about a new surgical procedure that would endow one with a perfect Århusk accent and although he feared it would cost a lot, he determined that it would be worth it.
He consulted with a specialist who said «Yeah, we can do that for you. It’s very simple. We just excise one quarter of your brain and you will be able to speak perfect Århusk.» The man felt that was rather drastic, but he wanted so badly to fit in in Århus that he decided to go ahead.
They put him under and the doctor went to work on him. Unfortunately, the doctor slipped with the scalpel and ended up cutting out half his brain. They hastily sewed him up and with ‘bated breath hoped that fellow had survived the operation okay. They waited ’round his bedside for him to come to. The man eventually opened his eyes, smiled and said «Mojn!». (I don’t know if I’m spelling it right, but ‘mojn’ is supposed to be Norwegian for ‘good morning’.)
Jesper Thomsen writes: «I just visited your site with scandinavian jokes. Just a correction. ‘Mojn’ is not a norwegian word, it is very danish, but from the southern parts of Jutland; nobody else uses it, and it has a hillbilly ring to it. It’s used for hello and goodbye.»
Robin Larson writes: «The «mojn» must be something common to the North German plain, which some geographers use to lump together southern Denmark, the Netherlands, and northern Germany.
When I was an exchange student in northwest Germany (Bremen), my German friends said «moin» as a greeting like some sort of inside joke. My host brother said that the rural people in the NW corner who said «moin» were analogous to the people caricatured on the American television show Hee Haw: «How-dee!»
Two men were sitting on a bench in a park. One of them was drunk, and the other was also Swedish!
Submitted by Ruben Vestergaard, Kastrup,Denmark
Q: What’s the difference between Swedes and mosquitos?
A: Mosquitos are only annoying in the summer.
Keep Denmark clean — show a Swede to the ferry.
The preceding two submitted by Jesper Thomsen
Q: Hvordan kender man en norsk reje?
A: Den står på halen, slår sig på brystet, og siger: «Jeg ær en hymmer» — submitted by Anonymous
I used to have two links from the Danish Humor Archive here, but I’m getting a 404 nowadays. Danes interested in equal time will need to submit links and suggestions to me.
Danish jokes about Swedes, from Artomania. In Danish.
Danish jokes about Norwegians, from Artomania. In Danish.
Jokes About Finns
I am Danish — I work with a Finn, and he told me this one last week: «How do you tell an extrovert Finn ?» «When conversing with you, he’s actually looking at your feet instead of his own !» Elsa Hansen, The Dane, in Portland, Oregon
The difference between a Finnish wedding and a Finnish funeral is that at a funeral there’s one person not having vodka. — submitted by Gunvi, Sweden
Jokes About Norwegians
I liked those. I have heard a lot of them before, as applied to Polish and Irish, but here are some from my family: Q: What does it say at the bottom of Norwegian Beer Bottles? A: Open At Other End. Q: What sign is at the bottom of Norwegian Swimming Pools? A: No Smoking. submitted by CyberTusk
A bus had twenty Norwegians and they were driving into Sweden and it crashed on the highway, the owners were mad because they were Finnish and the bus could have fit thirty. — submitted by Lee Georgeson
Jokes About Swedes
Q: How do you sink a Swedish battleship?
A: Put it in the water.
Q: Why does the NEW Swedish navy have glass-bottom boats ?
A: To see the OLD Swedish navy. -submitted by ScanFest
Eino and Toivo jokes from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula (U.P.)
It’s not too common for Americans to josh Canadians the way that Scandinavians josh each other, but here’s a joke page on the Anti-Canadian website. It includes a Canadian version of that brain surgery joke I learned in Denmark.
Get even,er, I mean, send your contributions.
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last modified on 11/12/00
I used to update something on this site about every two weeks. Unfortunately, things are probably going to be mothballed for a while due to a hellacious flareup of Repetitive Strain Injury. I have voice recognition, but it’s not too good for me to spend much time on the computer in either case. I still love hearing your feedback about the site, it’s just going to take me longer to reply or implement changes. So keep them cards and letters coming!
When in home, act as the homans do…