Wednesday, April 07, 2004

For a city that escaped being bombed into smithereens in World War II, Stockholm has an amazing amount of ugly and boxy functionalist apartment houses and office buildings, most of which have sprouted up since 1945.

Did enterprising Stockholm citizens of 1945 feel the same way about the buildings put up at the turn of the 20th century? And will enterprising Stockholm citizens of 2045 find functionalist architecture more charming than I do now? What exactly is it about older buildings that makes them more pleasing to the eye? Why do I actually go some six blocks out of my way to fill a prescription at The Stork Pharmacy, which is all Jugend-era painted glass ceilings and dark wood finials run amok?

The Swedish word for the day is läkemedel, which means medicine.

- by Francis S.

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