Hallandale Beach Blog -A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt., public policy, sports scene and pop culture of the U.S., South Florida, Europe and Sweden. In particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood & Aventura.
Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln. Pictured in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A; September 2008 photo by me, South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

"A" is for Awesome and ABBA as the new ABBA Museum in Stockholm officially opens this afternoon. Monday night's gala premiere brought Anni-Frid, Benny and Björn together, cheered on by a select group of invitees from across Swedish society and the music industry, who are, in the end, just fans of the band like everyone else, and very excited that this amazing museum is FINALLY a reality; #abba, #AbbaMuseum, #ThankYouForTheMusic, @stockholm, @sweden


Euronews YouTube Channel video: Euronews reporter Valerie Zabriskie speaks with lucky Abba fan club members selected to get a sneak preview of the new museum in Stockholm. Uploaded May 5, 2013. http://youtu.be/xbDW3FdtEgM
"A" is for Awesome and ABBA and the new ABBA Museum in Stockholm, which officially opens today at 1600 Stockholm time/10 a.m. Eastern U.S. Monday night's gala premiere brought Anni-Frid, Benny and Björn together, cheered on by a select group of invitees from across Swedish society and the music industry, who are, in the end, just fans of the band like everyone else, and very excited that this amazing museum is FINALLY a reality; #abba, #AbbaMuseum, #ThankYouForTheMusic, @stockholm, @sweden

I could mention who some of these VIPs are and why they're important and why they're there,
but that's not worth spending the time it would take today to do that, and besides, TMI as I'm sometimes reminded by friends here in Hallandale Beach and elsewhere around the globe.

Plus, I've had a very clear idea of how this particular blog post would look ever since I was there in January, so trying to explain to you all who Carola or Sarah Dawn Finer are and why they are in the video below iis, well, just a losing proposition today.

Aftonbladet TV video: Här invigs ABBA-museet -Jonas Bilberg levererade livebilder från galaöppningen. 
May 6, 2013. http://tv.aftonbladet.se/webbtv/noje/article11311.ab

Aftonbladet TV video: Här inviger kändiseliten ABBA-museet  
7 maj 2013 00:12
http://tv.aftonbladet.se/webbtv/noje/article11311.ab

It's enough to know that it's logical that they were there.
Just go with it.


BBC-TV video
Abba museum in Stockholm celebrates Swedish pop group
7 May 2013 Last updated at 04:22 ET 

BBC-TV video
As the Abba museum prepares to open its doors in Stockholm, the BBC's Russell Trott takes a look inside.
6 May 2013 Last updated at 21:54 ET


Aftonbladet TV: Nu öppnar ABBA-museet, Björn Ulvaeus: - "Kan visa det för barnbarnen med stolthet" 6 maj 2013 15:31
http://tv.aftonbladet.se/webbtv/noje/musik/article11284.ab



SVT video: TV Abba-museet öppnades
http://www.svt.se/nyheter/article1203720.svt


NTDTV -ABBA Museum in Stockholm

Tickets for the much-discussed and anticipated museum that's full of innovative technology run about 195 SEK/ just under $30 U.S. for adults, and 50 SEK/$7.63 for children up to age 8, at today's current ratio of about 6.52 Krona to the dollar, more or less.

But fair warning, the museum in the beautiful Djurgården section of Stockholm WON'T take bills or coins, only electronic payments, because as the museum puts it loftily, "Vi har en dröm om ett kontantfritt samhälle, därför går det inte handla med mynt eller sedlar hos oss."
("We have a vision of a cashless society, therefore we don’t handle coins and bills." )

Yes, sorta like in the future as seen in Star Trek, but not quite, since there's a 5% discount with MasterCard.

Björn's explanation on why abba-museet doesn't take bills and coins, largely to prevent crime, has a great introduction that only a real genius like him could get away with saying in his Big Picture way
There was a time when bills and coins served their purpose. They replaced cumbersome barter and made trade between people and nations possible. But do they still serve this purpose? Do we really need cash? Or is it a fixed idea like with Scrooge McDuck? Have we lost the ability to see that coins and bills are mere symbols and that those symbols easily could be exchanged for others? Cards and smartphones today and who knows what in the future.
Read the rest of Björn's comments at http://www.abbathemuseum.com/cashless

Combining innovation, ideals, crime-fighting and Scrooge McDuck! 
Brilliant!!!


Dags för ABBA The Museum 
by Lars Epstein 
15:14, May 6, 2013
http://www.dn.se/blogg/epstein/2013/05/06/dags-for-abba-the-museum/

According to Lars Epstein's post yesterday, above, at his Stockholm-centric Epstein's STHLM blog at Dagens Nyheter, the museum is expecting about 217,000 visitors a year.

Yes, holograms...


ABBA Museum website:

Here's the website of the ABBA Museum exhibit at Stockholm Arlanda Airport that I saw back in mid-January when I arrived for my nine-day trip in Stockholm, where I snapped some photos while waiting around for my luggage at the arrival carousel at Terminal 5which was festooned with photos of... who else?
http://www.swedavia.se/arlanda/om-stockholm-arlanda-airport/om-flygplatsen/official-airport-of-abba-the-museum/


All original photos on this page by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. Right-click photos to enlarge them.


For someone like me who has been a huge ABBA fan for more than two-thirds of my life, the  biggest ABBA fan that most people I've known have ever met, as small as this exhibit at the airport was, in looking at it and reflecting back on everything, it was hard to get over the fact that for so long, like millions of other fans, we fervently hoped that there'd be a museum some day that would be shaped along the lines of,,, well, just what they seem to have actually done: music plus heart -musik plus hjärta.

Like those other fans of the band, over the past 20 years I've given up counting how many interviews I'd seen with the band members, especially Benny and Bjorn, discussing the idea

of it, but quite naturally, being somewhat unsure of how to answer such a question without seeming pretentious.
But it IS a weird question, isn't it, when you really think about it?
Should there be a museum that people pay to get into that's all about you and three other people you've known for most of your life?
How do you answer that?

TheSpringOf74 YouTube Channel video: ABBA - Dancing Queen - LIVE at the Royal Swedish Opera, Stockholm, June 18, 1976, at the gala tribute to Sweden's King Carl XV1 Gustaf and future wife and Queen, Silvia Sommerlath, the night before their wedding. If I remember my ABBA history correctly, this was the first time the song had ever been performed in public in Sweden. http://youtu.be/33Yj5pbsXAs
Above, in my humble opinion, the single best version of this iconic song ever recorded on film.

Here are those January 10, 2013 photos I snapped at Arlanda before and after grabbing my luggage:
 



All original photos on this page by South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.





Here's how they appear on the airport's official exhibit web page:
http://www.swedavia.se/arlanda/om-stockholm-arlanda-airport/om-flygplatsen/official-airport-of-abba-the-museum/

You can see more photos of this exhibit by going to Google Images using these words as your search terms: "Terminal 5, Arlanda, ABBA"


Here's the link to the ABBA Museum-related news videos that have run on TV4, most recent first, obviously, in Swedish, but many with lots of great video of the musem: http://www.tv4play.se/s%C3%B6k?utf8=%E2%9C%93&q=Abba
Obviously, there's a lot to see and watch!



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Hallandale Beach Blog

Hallandale Beach Blog
Hallandale Beach Blog/South Beach Hoosier's crimson-colored Indiana University cap. If you see someone at a South Florida govt. meeting or public policy discussion wearing this IU cap, scribbling notes furiously -and likely shaking his head in disbelief- don't be afraid to come over and say hello or pitch a prospective story idea. Photo by South Beach Hoosier. Move your mouse over the cap and you are sent to the IU Athletic Dept.'s YouTube Channel to see the latest on the Hoosiers.

Paradise Lost? South Florida

Paradise Lost? South Florida
TIME magazine of November 23, 1981: Paradise Lost? South Florida . Click photo to see original article.
Hallandale Beach Blog is where I try to inject or superimpose a degree of accountability, transparency and insight onto Florida and local Broward County government and public policy issues, which I feel is sorely lacking in local media now. On this blog, locally, I concentrate my energy, enthusiasm, anger and laser-like attention on the coastal cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood and Aventura.

If you lived in this part of South Florida, you'd ALREADY be stuck in stultifying traffic, paying higher-than-necessary taxes and continually musing about the chronic lack of accountability among not only elected govt. officials, but also of city, county and state employees as well. Collectively, with a few rare exceptions, they couldn't be farther from the sort of strong results-oriented, eager work-ethic mentality that local residents deserve and expect. But seldom if ever see...

This is particularly true in the Broward County city I live in, the City of Hallandale Beach, north of Aventura and south of Hollywood and right on the Atlantic Ocean. Here, the "Perfect Storm" of years of apathy, incompetency and cronyism are all too readily apparent. Sadly for its beleaguered residents, HB is where even easily-solved, quality-of-life problems are left to fester for YEARS on end, because of myopia, lack of common sense and ineffective supervisory management. It's a city with tremendous potential because of its terrific location and well-educated populace, yet its citizens have almost become numb to HB City Hall's frequent outrages and screw-ups, the result of YEARS of the worst kind of mismanagement and lack of foresight. On a daily basis, residents and Small Business owners wake up and see the same old problems that have never being adequately resolved by the city in a logical and responsible fashion, merely kicked -once again- further down the road for others to solve in the future.

I used to ask myself, not always rhetorically, "Where are all the enterprising young reporters who want to show that through their own hard work and enterprise, what REAL investigative reporting can produce?" Hearing no response, I decided to start a blog of my own that could try to do some of these things, taking the p.o.v. of a reasonable-but-skeptical person seeing the situation for the first time with fresh eyes, and wanting questions answered in a honest and logical way that citizens have the right to expect.

Hallandale Beach Blog intends to be a catalyst for positive change in public policy and goivernment engagement. If there's one constant gripe in South Florida, regardless of your age, race, nationality or political persuasion, it's about the fundamental lack of PUBLIC ACCOUNTABILITY of Florida's state, regional and local govt./agency officials, elected and otherwise. Hallandale Beach Blog aims to be a small step towards regaining some of that needed accountability, whether it's thru shining some well-needed public scrutiny on the issue or pol, or requires a higher degree of follow-up investigation and public exposure of the incompetency, cronyism or negligence -South Florida's usual governing style.
Some older elements and building blocks formerly seen at Hallandale Beach Blog, such as photos, graphics and videos have been moved into cold storage. Visit them again or see what you've missed at: http://hallandale-beach-blog.blogspot.com/
Unless otherwise indicated, all ORIGINAL photos appearing here were taken by myself. © 2014 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. The use or modification of original photos or original images appearing on this blog WITHOUT the written permission of the author is expressly prohibited. DO NOT modify or alter any original photo/image on this blog and use it in any other media, whether for commercial advertising, marketing purposes, political campaign advertising, or on any Social Media platform or digital media forum. Do NOT modify or alter the photos or use them in a confusing way that suggests sponsorship or endorsement, or in a way that seeks to confuse Hallandale Beach Blog with another blog. This includes but is not limited to sites such as Dipity, Facebook, flickr, MySpace, Pinterest, Posterous, Topsy, Twitter, YouTube or VIMEO. Original photos and images also can NOT be used as avatars or icons on website forums.

Singer/songwriter Full of Keys (Anni Bernhard)

Singer/songwriter Full of Keys (Anni Bernhard)
Singer/songwriter Full of Keys (Anni Bernhard) wearing the teal-colored Miami Dolphins cap I gave her in January 2013 (in Stockholm) while recording her 2nd album, "The Grazing Grounds" at Sandkvie Studios in Visby, Gotland, Sweden. Also pictured here are sound engineer and co-producer Linus Larsson and musician/DJ/co-producer Mats Jönsson, April 12, 2013.Click the photo to see her videos, read my blog posts and Tweets about her and learn more about this dynamic and original talent with personality to spare!

North Miami Beach Senior High School, the Home of the Chargers

North Miami Beach Senior High School, the Home of the Chargers
Before I was a Hoosier, I was an NMB Charger, Class of 1979.

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation

In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation
"In the Heart of a Great Country, Beats the Soul of Hoosier Nation." -South Beach Hoosier, 2007.

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Close-up photo of the cute head-turning window display I snapped in 2013 at the Apotek Hjärtat -Sweden's largest independent pharmacy chain- located at Ringvägen 113, near the Skanstull T-bana in Södermalm, Stockholm. Sign reads, "Årets nyhet: du! Ett helt nytt och obrukat år är här. Just nu känns det lite lättare att välja om, förändra vanor och bryta gamla mönster. Vi hjälper gärna till. Du vill, du kan, du törs!' (New this year: you! A brand new and unused year is here. Right now it feels a little easier to choose, change habits and break old patterns. We're happy to help. You want to, you can, you dare!) Sounds like good advice that I ought to be following, too! January 12, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier.© 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved

Congratulations Sweden - 200 years of peace! Solveig Rundquist (@RundquistS)

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The colder and snowier it got in Stockholm, the more this simple ad seemed like genius. Sometimes, you don't have to reinvent the advertising wheel. When you're a travel agency and it's cold and snowing, make your target audience think of summers and traveling to an inviting warm beach. Above, one of the many Sistaminuten.se display ads I saw on the side of pay phones throughout Stockholm. This one was located on Ringvägen, across the street from the Åhléns Dept. store (with the Hemköp grocery store in the basement that I frequented) west of busy Götgatan and the Skanstull T-bana, the southern commercial heart of trendy and fun Södermalm. January 11, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier.© 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. I used this photo in my April 22, 2013 blog post titled, Tourism game-changer for South Florida travelers & Fort Lauderdale-area businesses -but only if they're smart and start planning now. Ruminations on the upcoming Norwegian.com flights b/w Ft. Lauderdale and Oslo, Stockholm & Copenhagen, and the need for Broward's hospitality industry to take full-advantage of the opportunity; @Oslo, @norway, @stockholm, @sweden, @copenhagen, @denmark. Click photo to see that post

More travel advertising in Stockholm

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Speaking of advertising, only two blocks from the wonderful 4trappor B&B I stayed at in Södermalm, Stockholm on my trip -and also located on Ringvägen- were two more display ads promoting travel. The one in the distance is for SAS, Scandinavian Airlines Systems, which I flew on to Stockholm, and the one in the foreground, on a public telephone booth, is the "Holiday is where the Heart is" ad campaign for VING. January 12, 2013 photo by South Beach Hoosier.© 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved. Click the photo to see their TV ad!

Which European country has the most attractive citizens?

As seen in my July 31st, 2013 blog post titled, "Which European country has the most attractive citizens?" Sweden won in a landslide with almost four times as many votes as second-place France, with Spain third and Norway fourth. Yes, seeing is believing!; Norwegian.com's non-stop flights from Fort Lauderdale to Oslo start in 4 months! :) http://hallandalebeachblog.blogspot.com/2013/07/boredpandacom-poll-of-europeans-asked.html