Absolutely nothing to do with banking but, as I think of this as a dialogue, I wanted to share a few stories with the Finanser community that made me smile this week, as well as made me proud to be in Europe.
First was the Swedish court case against Apoteker, the state-run pharmacy. Two chaps claim that the firm is in breach of Sweden’s equal opportunities legislation for stocking lady’s sex toys, and are quoted as saying that the pharmacy chain "had a misguided and untrue view on sexuality
where a woman with a dildo is seen as liberated, strong and
independent, whereas a man with a blow up plastic vagina is viewed as
disgusting and perverted."
Only the Swedish!
Then there’s Giles Smith, in the Times, who writes a lovely little piece about the World Sauna Championships.
"It would be a shame if the Olympics completely overshadowed the World Sauna
Championships, which took place in Finland last weekend. The host nation
cleaned up, producing the champion in both the men’s and women’s
competitions, the male winner managing an impressive time of 18min 15sec at
Great Britain, one noted, was nowhere to be seen, which was both disappointing
and slightly surprising. After all, what is a sauna, if not a kind of shed?
And didn’t the British pretty much invent sheds, and sitting in them?
Obviously British sheds are generally unheated, as they stand, but that
could be sorted out simply enough with a bit of lottery investment and a
commitment to a national improvement programme. The grass roots are in place
and it wouldn’t take much, surely, to end the hurt, restore some pride and
break these long years of Finnish domination in the sauna."
Only the Finnish!
This was followed by the lovely story of the bouncy church in Italy designed to attract Italian Catholic holidaymakers on the beach to still ahve their religious moments.
The church is 30 metres long,and comes complete with an altar and confessional. So, for all those on the Campomarino beach in the Adriatic, god bless.
Only the Italians!
Finally, there’s another giant inflatable story, but this time in Switzerland.
Artist Paul McCarthy’s latest piece caused mass hysteria in Berne when his giant, inflatable dog poo:
broke free from its moorings at the Paul Klee Centre museum and flew over the town.
The Turdzilla, which is the size of a house, brought down a power line and broke a window, before coming to rest in a children’s playground … probably where it belongs?
Only the Swiss!
How I love being European.