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Denmark 101 with Alex Berger

Tips, tricks, and cultural observations about the Danes and life in Denmark. From Copenhagen on the island of Sjaelland to Aarhus, Alborg and the far reaches of Jutland. I aspire to explore Denmark and to report back on Denmark's wonderful people, rich traditions and subtle quirks.
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Denmark 101 with Alex Berger
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Now displaying: May, 2018
May 14, 2018

Hygge? You bet, but don't forget your candles! In today's episode I dive into the differences between how Americans deal with and view candles (especially southwesterners like myself from warmer regions) and how Danes view and use candles. Five years in, I've got to admit the Danes have won me over completely and I'm now decidedly on #teamcandle and loving the warmth and charm they offer. Though, we're still going to have to agree to disagree on how to use aromatic candles.

If you're Danish hopefully you'll find this series interesting, a bit informative, and not too outlandishly offensive.

If you're a foreigner coming to Denmark, I hope this helps you build upon observations and insights the rest of us had to find out the hard way.

Topics that will be covered include the Danish approach to nudity, how to make Danish friends, how to meet Danes, Danish manners, and even a look at Janteloven.

Stay tuned for future updates - this is just the beginning!

Explore the stories behind this podcast at http://virtualwayfarer.com.

Where you can find me:

BLOG - http://www.virtualwayfarer.com
FACEBOOK- http://www.facebook.com/virtualwayfarer
INSTAGRAM - http://instagram.com/virtualwayfarer
TWITTER - http://twitter.com/AlexBerger

May 13, 2018

Root Beer. As an American it's a classic cornerstone of American culture. Even though it's not as popular these days, it's still the definition of iconic for many Americans right there next to a Hamburger shop or Drive in Movie. For Danes though? Whew. Not so much.

So, which side of the Root Beer divide do you fall on? Team Root Beer or Team Toothpaste?

If you're Danish hopefully you'll find this series interesting, a bit informative, and not too outlandishly offensive.

If you're a foreigner coming to Denmark, I hope this helps you build upon observations and insights the rest of us had to find out the hard way.

Topics that will be covered include the Danish approach to nudity, how to make Danish friends, how to meet Danes, Danish manners, and even a look at Janteloven.

Stay tuned for future updates - this is just the beginning!

Explore the stories behind this podcast at http://virtualwayfarer.com.

Where you can find me:

BLOG - http://www.virtualwayfarer.com
FACEBOOK- http://www.facebook.com/virtualwayfarer
INSTAGRAM - http://instagram.com/virtualwayfarer
TWITTER - http://twitter.com/AlexBerger

May 12, 2018

Experiencing Danish culture means experiencing Danish alcohols. From Gammel Dansk to Aalborg Gold and Fisherman's Friend in-between, this episode is dedicated to exploring many of the most common Danish hard alcohols. Just writing this description and thinking about how horrible a lot of it is gives me chills and goosebumps. So, on that note, enjoy and...skal!

If you're Danish hopefully you'll find this series interesting, a bit informative, and not too outlandishly offensive.

If you're a foreigner coming to Denmark, I hope this helps you build upon observations and insights the rest of us had to find out the hard way.

Topics that will be covered include the Danish approach to nudity, how to make Danish friends, how to meet Danes, Danish manners, and even a look at Janteloven.

Stay tuned for future updates - this is just the beginning!

Explore the stories behind this podcast at http://virtualwayfarer.com.

Where you can find me:

BLOG - http://www.virtualwayfarer.com
FACEBOOK- http://www.facebook.com/virtualwayfarer
INSTAGRAM - http://instagram.com/virtualwayfarer
TWITTER - http://twitter.com/AlexBerger

May 11, 2018

Without fail one of the things most non-Nordics find captivating about the Nordic countries are their liberal approach to sex and the stunning beauty of their populations. It doesn't take long looking for information about Denmark before the beauty of Danish men and women comes up.

In the last few years there have even been some very widely viewed TV commercials which tackled the topic, such as Speis' "Do it for Denmark" campaign. But, one thing that doesn't get mentioned much, despite Danes reputation as some of the most shameless and sexually well-rounded folks out there, is condoms and condom use.

Though not a core part of this channel, I'm a huge advocate of safe sex, and of sex education. As part of that, one element of Danish culture that is quite disappointing, especially among my generation, is an overall casual approach to using condoms and practicing safe sex.

Here's a look at some of the stats (source: http://sti.bmj.com/content/early/2015/01/21/sextrans-2014-051814.full )

"Results Response rate was 20.4%. Condoms were used at sexual debut by 69.9% of women and 62.3% of men, while 14.3% of women and 15.1% of men used no contraceptives at sexual debut. Half of the respondents used condom alone at the latest sexual encounter with a steady partner (women 51.8%, men 55.2%), while 10% used no contraceptives. Having a sexual encounter with a casual partner decreased the likelihood of using condoms (women 43.7%, men 49.5%) and increased the likelihood of using no contraceptives (women 14.8%, men 20.9%). Data on sexual behaviour characteristics showed only minor changes when weighted for non-response. Conclusions The findings call for interventions addressing the use of appropriate contraception at sexual debut and at last sexual encounter; this seems particularly important when the sexual partner is a casual partner."

While this episode doesn't focus on the specifics of Condom usage. One thing I found quite interesting when first arriving in Denmark was how and where one goes about locating, shopping for, and purchasing condoms. After all, you see massive variations from country to country in the availability, range of options available, and approach to condom usage and it is, for many, an important consideration. So - to the Danes watching, I suppose my question for you in this episode is, where do YOU buy your condoms?

If you're Danish hopefully you'll find this series interesting, a bit informative, and not too outlandishly offensive.

If you're a foreigner coming to Denmark, I hope this helps you build upon observations and insights the rest of us had to find out the hard way.

Topics that will be covered include the Danish approach to nudity, how to make Danish friends, how to meet Danes, Danish manners, and even a look at Janteloven.

Stay tuned for future updates - this is just the beginning!

Explore the stories behind this podcast at http://virtualwayfarer.com.

Where you can find me:

BLOG - http://www.virtualwayfarer.com
FACEBOOK- http://www.facebook.com/virtualwayfarer
INSTAGRAM - http://instagram.com/virtualwayfarer
TWITTER - http://twitter.com/AlexBerger

May 11, 2018

You requested I share observations about religion, religiosity and related considerations in Denmark, including some comparisons to what I was exposed to growing up in the US.

In this episode, I attempt to dive into a very complex topic while still trying to keep things fairly brief. As usual, this likely is somewhat biased towards Copenhagen (and the other major cities) and may not be as completely applicable to more rural areas which tend to be more religious and practice religion differently (true in all countries), so do take that into consideration. For some additional context here's the Wikipedia page about Religion in Denmark: 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_Denmark

If you're Danish hopefully you'll find this series interesting, a bit informative, and not too outlandishly offensive.

If you're a foreigner coming to Denmark, I hope this helps you build upon observations and insights the rest of us had to find out the hard way.

Topics that will be covered include the Danish approach to nudity, how to make Danish friends, how to meet Danes, Danish manners, and even a look at Janteloven.

Stay tuned for future updates - this is just the beginning!

Explore the stories behind this podcast at http://virtualwayfarer.com.

Where you can find me:

BLOG - http://www.virtualwayfarer.com
FACEBOOK- http://www.facebook.com/virtualwayfarer
INSTAGRAM - http://instagram.com/virtualwayfarer
TWITTER - http://twitter.com/AlexBerger

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