Tuesday, March 09, 2004

After a few beers at Strykjärnet, the restaurant in Stockholm's own miniature version of the Flatiron Building, and a couple of rounds of political discussion and agreeing that despite the sorry state of the U.S. there is possibly some reason for hope, and then a few more beers, the charming Stefan Geens (who is as sharp as his writing) let drop the fact that he is post-national, a man happily bereft of country and a culture that he can call home.

I said that maybe I was, too.

"Nah," he said.

Which I guess means that I am pre-post-national.

I certainly feel as if I have all the benefits already, which would mean not having to feel embarrassed because of the actions of a particular president or prime minister, or somehow responsible for an inane television program that improbably spreads like a virus to the rest of the world. One is an outsider everywhere, a ready excuse for any particular social gaffe one makes - just blame it on not being a Swede, or not living in America anymore.

So, I wonder when exactly I will achieve true post-national status?

The Swedish word for the day is anledning. It means reason or cause.

- by Francis S.

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