The Nobel Prize Information Bureau


I love the Nobel Prizes. I love the atmosphere of glamour united with intelligence. So it comes as no surprise that I, like last year, proclaimed myself the Nobel Prize Information Bureau and update my co-workers daily around lunch about who won the Nobel Prize. Since my knowledge is limited in the fields of chemistry, physics and even medicine, I like the prizes for Peace and Literature best. They are the most relatable prizes and chances are that you actually have heard those names before.

Gert Fylking, a Swedish journalist, actor and politician (anything he is not?), used to sit in on the Nobel Prize announcements and immediately reacted with “Äntligen!” (“Finally!”) when a name was called. His comment was meant to be ironic, illustrating that most people don’t have a clue about who the award winners are before they are given the Nobel Prize.

Like it’s Gert’s tradition to mock the Nobel committee, it is mine to force my co-workers to join in a bet on who will win the Literature Nobel Prize. I counted on a politically influenced choice so I thought it would be either a Syrian or ‘the Russian’. I betted on the wrong one, like always so far. But for the first time this year, someone actually guessed right! I owe her a fika now because Swetlana Alexijewitsch won the Nobel Prize. But what’s a fika for getting a Nobel Prize Winner who is a female Putin-critic who records oral history? It’d pay more than one fika for that.

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