A common sense public policy overview from David in South Florida, offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt./public policy, sports and pop culture of the U.S., #SoFL and Europe, esp. the #UK, #Sweden and #France, via my life in #Texas, #Memphis, #Miami, #IU, #Chicago, #WashingtonDC & #SoFL. In particular, #Broward & #MiamiDade County, and the cities of #HallandaleBeach, #HollywoodFL & #Aventura. Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln.

Photo in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A, September 2008; March 2018 photo below of HB's North Beach and southern Hollywood Beach, looking left-to-right, looking north, HYDE Condominium, Etaru Japanese Robatayaki restaurant, and Hollywood Beach in the distance, with umbrellas. All photos by me, © Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Bad news on the #Sweden front: ​How that very disturbing news about violent crime in Sweden you probably didn't see or read about in the U.S. media yet affects me... I'm not going to Sweden and Iceland this week as I'd previously planned. :-( #Stockholm

Bad news on the Sweden front: How that very disturbing news about violent crime in Sweden you probably didn't see or read about in the U.S. media yet, affects me... I'm not going to Sweden and Iceland this week as I'd previously planned. :-(

So, a not-so-funny thing happened on my way to what I'd long thought was going to be the beginning of my 11-day trip to Sweden and Iceland... Tuesday.
As some of you might recall, for a few months, I was originally scheduled to be flying to beautiful Stockholm on Tuesday morning to FINALLY do some pretty exciting personal and professional things I've longed to do for years, details of which most of you know about from what I've previously written or talked with you about, often after many of you asked... per my last blog post, "Dave, why aren't you in Las Vegas?" :-(

The plan was to go visit now and still get back to South Florida in time to watch the Super Bowl on February 4th, though maybe landing at FLL just a few hours before the 6:30 PM kickoff.

A post shared by Icelandair (@icelandair) on

Emily Joy‏ @Emilyjsantos
Finally edited! Thank you @wow_air for taking us to one of the most beautiful places I've seen yet. @IcelandNatural. https://twitter.com/Emilyjsantos/status/838763143241285635

(You insiders reading this near me in South Florida know that I wanted very much to see and share all of this Icelandic beauty above, and in Sweden, with a very talented woman whom, herself, knows a thing or two about how to make a great drone video. Just a few weeks ago I thought there was at least a reasonable chance that she'd be coming along on my trip to Sweden and Iceland, that, if we'd taken it, I have no doubt would have been truly magical, with or without any Auroras and regardless of what sort of rough weather we encountered. Our first overseas trip together.

The trip would've allowed me/us to meet some amazing and super-talented and prominent tech, business people in Sweden whom I've tried to see and interview for quite a long time, who now want to meet and talk and maybe do some interviews that I'd put on YouTube, or weave into a podcast, ideas I pitched them many years ago. Plus, see some super-talented singers who are friends or acquanitances, actually perform. Was so psyched... but now, feeling a bit #distraught :-( )

Even more than I already did everyday before I made my various airline and hotel reservations last Fall, I've been reading the Swedish news media and popular Twitter feeds every day with deep and increasing concern, and not simply out of any concern for my many friends in Sweden.

Rather it's because of the increasing amount of not simply street crime, but violent crime that's been taking place in Sweden's cities and public places these days, a trend that has been spiking upwards for quite some time.
A fact that I have been writing about for many years on this blog, which writes about what's REALLY going on in Sweden more than any other blog or website in Florida, and probably among the most in the U.S., which is why the high caliber and sorts of people read this blog and Follow me on Twitter when I discuss the realities on the ground in Sweden, not the imaginary narrative so preferred by so many prominent current and former Swedish officials and members of the news media and Swedish establishment would prefer.

That disturbing trend and reality is perhaps best highlighted by the honest, forthright article from Sunday's Times of London. An article that pulls no punches, unlike most of what you read or hear about Sweden in the U.S. news media, which follows a familiar and tiresome narrative.
That is, on the rare times the U.S. media DOES mention Sweden.

The Sunday Times
Teens roam streets with rifles as crime swamps Sweden
The army may be called in to halt a gang surge in immigrant areas
Bojan Pancevski, Malmo
January 21 2018, 12:01am, The Sunday Times

The blast was so powerful that it shook windows a mile away. Ahmad’s first thought was that someone had thrown yet another bomb at the police.

He was right. On Wednesday night an explosive device was hurled at the police station in Rosengard, a troubled area of Malmo, Sweden’s third largest city.

Attacks on the police are increasingly frequent. Rosengard’s force works from a black fortress of reinforced concrete with narrow windows and a 10ft-high electric fence.

Read the rest of the article at:

Tucker Carlson's interview with Hanif Ali starts at 1:52 

The worsening violent street crime and the Police's continuing inability to cope with it in any meaningful way, and the possibility that the Swedish Army will be soon be mobilized and patroling certain cities, is just one of the reasons that I recently decided to postpone the trip to Sweden and
Iceland that I'd first made reservations for last Fall, and aim instead for sometime this coming Spring or Summer. No specific makeup dates YET.

I made this decision even though experience tells me that it'll be much more expensive to fly then and to stay at a nice property that I stayed at on my last trip to Stockholm, a place in the Norrmalm neighborhood that could not have possibly been more convenient to all the places I needed to go to, plus, its proximity to Central Station, aka T-Centralen, Stockholm's enormous main local T-Bana and commuter train, and bus terminal that is, quite literally, the heart of the city AND the country. 
Less than a ten minute walk away! 

Actually closer than my current home on Fillmore Street & US-1 in Hollywood is to one of my favorite places, Chocolada Bakery & Cafe on Hollywood Blvd., where I had breakfast on Sunday morning with my friend and fellow Broward County civic activist, Csaba Kulin.as we discussed what's going on in Hallandale Beach and Broward County. 

Can't leave Chocolada on weekends without the traditional post-breakfast cookies with my last cup of coffee... my notebook at the ready.

And when I say expensive I mean expensive in a city that's already among the most expensive cities in the world to travel to and stay in, though slightly cheaper for Americans today than when I last visited and was able to stay in the #1 B&B in all of Stockholm according to TripAdvisor. 
Last time, a Subway sub, a can of Coke and a small bag of chips = over $15.

Expensive, that is unless I re-start some negotiations with some aspiring blog advertisers like a few airlines, hotel and travel companies which Follow me, to help out a bit, or maybe even comp me and a very special and attractive, photo-shooting +1, as I was close to getting done a few months ago, just before, well, you know...
After which, I knew I'd be going solo. :-(

Going to Sweden and Iceland months from now would make Aurora-watching all-but-impossible, no matter how far north I go, even north of the Arctic Circle, to Kiruna, home of Mia Stålnacke, aka @AngryTheInchMia https://www.instagram.com/angrytheinch/
Watch this amazing real-time Aurora video that Mia shot in Kiruna Saturday night with a Sony a7, all while walking her dog, Tellus.

The quite disturbing news two weeks ago about a Swedish man being killed by a hand grenade near a Stockholm subway station did not exactly go un-noticed by Swedes, despite how quickly -and desperately- the Swedish news meda tried to bury the story within just hours, as if the New Normal 
in Sweden extended to not being surprised that innocent people could sometimes be killed by hand grenades while minding their own business.

Things being what they are in Sweden right now, and my own situation here being what it is, the decision to forego the trip now and wait a few more months was an easy one to make.

Still, I was really, really looking forward to getting out of South Florida for awhile and be back in acountry and a city that I positively love:

Jag älskar Stockholm -  ST❤️CKHOLM

Hej #STHLM, jag saknar dig, hejdå. So wish I was there RIGHT NOW!

On a positive note, the amazing, adorable and super-talented Cecilia Nilssona.k.a. Cilia, whom I have followed so very closely for years because I know her mentor and manager, Andreas, dropped her new single "Myself and I" last Friday. 
I've only listened to it fifty times so far...

A post shared by Cilia (@cilianilsson) on

Obviously, I'm biased, but I think it's very #catchy! 

Let me know what you think about the song, good or bad.
I'll likely be communicating with her later this week.

I'd been hoping for months that Cissi and I would be able to meet in the coming days in the downtown Stockholm area, just a few feet from the area where Stockholm Fashion Week takes place every year. 
I'd joked with her many weeks ago about the possibility of us going to the Kungsträdgården ice skating rink nearby.

A post shared by Kenneth Joe Oquendo Uy (@xzebryx2000) on

The Royal Swedish Opera House is nearby, too!

My brilliant idea, one that I hadn't shared with Cissi yet because I wanted it to be a complete surprise, was to try to persuade the skating rink attendant the day before I met her, to play some of Cissi's songs on the rink PA system when we were there the following day, especially when influential people from the nearby fashion shows would be outside, in-between shows and at lunch, at one of my favorite places in a city that I absolutely love and adore.

Perhaps even play... yes, a song that would be recognized by most of the people there, "Silhouettes in Slow Motion," her popular 2016 song that Volvo had the good sense to use last year in commercials to promote some amazing features in their new models in Sweden -and elsewhere- which was, obviously, promotion-wise a real coup for her. I mean it's VOLVO

Volvo Cars Connectivity "Weekenders" from Life in the City on Vimeo.
Master. Produced & directed by Karl-Johan Larsson, Life in the city AB
Song: Cilia Silhouettes in Slow Motion. All rights reserved 2016- okt 2017


was really looking forward to seeing what everyone's reaction would be, which I thought would be priceless, but now, that's off the agenda, too, which is a damn shame because it would have been great fun to see Cissi's reaction to my little surprise. :-(

As far as thngs locally go, since I'll be in the area and not in Europe for the next few weeks, unless something crazy happens, I'll likely be attending the upcoming Hollywood and Hallandale Beach City Commission and CRA meetings with something approaching the regularity that most everyone came to take for granted for years.
That includes next Monday evening's meeting in Hallandale Beach, which you should try to get there early for because of what's likely to take place: history.

There's certainly plenty of controversial issues to talk about in both cities regarding what is -and isn't happening- from my perspective. I'm seeing lots and lots of apathy and unwhelming effort with respect to public engagement these days, which will be reflected in my upcoming posts in this space.
Also, I may even hit some Hollywood Chamber of Commerce meetings and events, which I haven't done in a while, so if you see me at one of their events, don't be a stranger -come over and say hello!


Blog: Hallandale Beach Blog
Snapchat: SoBeHoosier

No comments:

Post a Comment