Wednesday, May 3, 2017

It’s Denmark, where everything is wonderful

In the bad USA, we don’t point out race or apparent national origin when sipping Coke at a Dairy Queen. It’s OK to do that in a Starbucks in Denmark, though.

‘Why an afternoon at a Starbucks shows the best of Danish multiculturalism’

“The women next to me speak Serbian, and two friends across me speak in Danish; one has the pale skin and blond hair of a Scandinavian native and the other has the olive skin and brown hair of someone from a warmer climate. In the queue, there’s an Arab couple talking about what they should entertain their children with during the winter break. I know because they are speaking in Danish.

“The girl behind the counter is transgender, only discernible by her completely flat chest. Outside, a black man is enjoying his coffee in solitude and watching people pass by. A couple of Asian youngsters defy all stereotypes and look like something from the 1970s British punk scene, the guy teaches the girl to say ’straw’ in Danish: ‘sugerør’ which directly translates into “sucking pipe”. They laugh and leave.”

The writer has a Master’s degree in English literature, with emphasis on post-colonial fiction and multicultural literature. But isn’t she drawing an improper conclusion concerning the girl behind the counter, whose transgenederism is “only discernible by her completely flat chest”? Maybe the person in question is a girl with a flat chest.

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