How to spot a Norwegian on campus

You’ll think they’re stuck up at first


You’ve probably heard tales about Norway, how everybody there climbs trees (that’s because they do) and has lots of oil in their garden.

Norwegians are everywhere. Even Kygo – yep, Norwegian – studied in Edinburgh. The truth is you can’t avoid them any more. They are here, accept it. You might as well get to know them. Whether you want to avoid them or befriend them, here are some ways in which you can spot them.

They put tea bag like pouches in their mouths.

Yes, it smells disgusting.

You enjoy a fag on a night out, but Norwegians don’t have your discipline. They need their nicotine all the time. In lectures, in exams, in meetings, in bed, you name it. Their solution? Snus! Snus are brown little bags containing nicotine that make you calm and dizzy when you put them under your upper lip. It’s probably the least sexy thing ever, but it’s the source of their power. I kid you not, Norwegians living in the UK will order Snus online, it is usually shipped from Israel. Desperate people.

Caution: if you do try snus, do NOT drink alcohol in advance, you will more likely than not throw up on your new friend’s Polo T-shirt.

They wear uniforms

No, not in a literal sense, but still. Norwegians don’t have to wear uniforms in school, so they make their own. For girls, it consists of white tops, grey cardigans, black trousers, and half a bottle of very expensive foundation.

Guys usually wear tailored jeans and Polo T-shirts. Weirdly enough they choose to stick with their uniforms until they hit their mid-life crises, so if you spot that grey Zara cardi, you’ve just met a Norwegian. Most importantly, you will never ever see a Norwegian wearing a sports jacket, for the simple reason that it’s usually not grey.

They’re the life of the party

Maybe it’s the Snus, or maybe they just have enough money to get inordinately pissed. Somehow, Norwegians are unbeatable on a night out.

They can make anyone feel boring and frigid when they start telling their wild (and pretty weird) sex-stories, most of them have at some point had sex on a moving vehicle. If you meet a Norwegian, buy them a pint and they will entertain you for the rest of the night.

They probably have stacks of weird food in their room.

A good night out in Norway

Ever heard of brown cheese? Didn’t think so. “Brunost” (it literally translates into “brown-cheese”) is the Norwegian national treasure. It tastes like a mix of caramel and chévre, and is best enjoyed with jam on brown bread. You probably wouldn’t like it…you’re not Norwegian.

Due to intolerably high alcohol prices (around eight pounds for a pint), Norwegians love getting drunk on homemade distilled alcohol called “hjemmebrent”, a vodka-like liquid with an alcohol percentage of 96%. It’s illegal of course, but who cares when a bottle of vodka costs forty quid: no wonder they can drink Brits under the table.

They’re older.

All Norwegians in your year are older. They’re probably older than you even if they’re a year below you. Why? Partly because they always need a break after A-levels, their brains need to recuperate or something. Secondly, Norwegians might be well off generally but they nevertheless have a strong work ethic.

Most of them will have had a fulltime job for a year before starting uni, meaning that they pay a lot of their tuition fees from their own pocket. If you’re not impressed, you should be.

Nobody does the resting bitch face like a Norwegian.

You might be scared when you see them,many of them  look like they never want to be approached by anyone ever. What makes the situation worse is that they come in groups. The result is a mafia-like, impeccably dressed gang pouting skeptically à la Paris Hilton.

Apparently Paris is of Norwegian descent, so now you know where she gets it from. Don’t be scared though, if you’re brave enough to talk to them they’re actually quite agreeable creatures. Just don’t ever mention Swedes. They bloody hate Swedes.

They are extremely proud of their nationality

The bizarre thing about these northern vikings is that most of them go to uni in the UK because they want to get away from Norway and Norwegians. But once they’ve moved they love hanging out with each other and constantly criticize Brits for not being more like Norwegians.

The first thing Norwegians bring up in a conversation is where they’re from and how much better everything is in Norway. Politics are better, people are friendlier, the food is healthier, the nature is more beautiful. The way they describe Norway makes you envision some kind of paradise where all guys look like Zac Efron and all girls look like Kate Upton.

You’ll probably feel like they are stuck-up snobs at first, but if you work through the initial shock you will discover that they have lots of potential and make loyal, kind, and cool friends and potential partners. The only downside to hanging out with them is they put on Kygo all the time (literally non-stop) – be prepared to sing along to Firestone for four hours straight.