Immigration

A couple Tuesdays ago, I visited Skatteverket (the Swedish tax office) to apply for my personnummer. The personnummer is the Swedish equivalent of an American Social Security number. In Sweden, you kind of need this number to do anything outside of just breathing. Not having a personnummer excludes you from

to article

A lot of what makes for good writing is having the time to write. After spending most of 2009 in Sweden, I’ve been back in America since December. Since being Stateside, I’ve realized that I just haven’t had the time or inspiration to write as much or as often as

to article

Is this thing on? Can you hear me? Testing, testing… Today’s report is being broadcast to you all the way from Kentucky, in the heart of God’s Great United States. After finishing up a European tour with my band Metroschifter last month, I returned to my hometown of Louisville. A

to article

Sometimes I feel like a lot of the material I write for this website is the same. It goes something like this: “Sweden is clean, quiet, beautiful and the people here have it all figured out. Americans are babies who hate the government and don’t want to pay taxes, but

to article

Awww, Louisville hasn’t forgotten me. Velocity Weekly, one of the city’s entertainment papers, has just published an article about me, the Metroschifter and Sweden. Written by the talented and funny Joseph Lord, the story starts with the line, “Scott Ritcher is experienced at getting the hell out of town…” I

to article

Today, I’d like to talk about two huge financial systems in the United States and how they could maybe benefit from – once again – a little Swedish influence. No, this isn’t about Wall Street or the economic crisis, but perhaps they share some of the same types of thinking,

to article

Back in March, my friend Johanna interviewed me about my move. She is a student at Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan (The Swedish Royal Institute of Technolgy) where she is studying, well, it seems she is studying just about everything. I’ve heard her talk about the Media Technology program she’s in and

to article

Enough about Sweden already. Let’s talk about me. Today’s story has been in the works for more than a few weeks. It has a lot of personal information about my thoughts, feelings, and ideas, so if you’re more interested in the Swedish culture stuff, pictures of stairs, and fake charts,

to article

This morning I attended the first of ten 2.5-hour Swedish language classes at Stockholm’s Medborgarskolan. I’m not a fan of school, but I have dedicated myself to becoming proficient in using and understanding the Swedish language, so taking classes is obviously the most efficient way to speed up that process.

to article

If I fall gravely ill soon, here’s why: As we have discussed, my chainsmoking Dutch roommate is selling the apartment and so i have to move at the end of April. In preparation for selling the place, he has essentially torn the apartment into pieces to fix it up. He

to article

I recently noticed that the Tunnelbana trains have names. A nice touch, I think, although I don’t care for the font. Here are Ted and Maria. You would expect a transit system to give them catchier names like TF0142581 and XG532014. While riding inside the T-bana (I almost wrote “when

to article

After just a few weeks in the apartment, my roommate has told me that he has decided to move back to Holland and sell the apartment. I will be moving in with my friends Iida and Erik on May 1st. They are a little farther from the city center, but

to article

A couple days after moving into my apartment, I took this picture of everything I own fitting nicely into these closets, with room to spare. *=Not pictured are some boxes of photos and other “archives” I have in my parents’ basement in Louisville. Those boxes would fit here in this

to article

After a few days, I moved in with a Dutch guy named Sander in another suburb of Stockholm called Hagsätra. I found him and the apartment on the internet and made contact with him from America, so I already had this lined up. He is a carpenter who moved to

to article

My dear friend Emma Pettersson and her cat Skrållan, whose hair is still all over my stuff. This was the third occasion in a year’s time that I have stayed in her Malmö apartment. We also met up last summer when she and fellow Malmö friend Wictoria Trei were visiting

to article

In the months leading up to my departure for Sweden, I had a countdown clock running on my iPhone. It was counting down the days, hours, minutes, and seconds until I left. I took this screenshot of it as I was sitting in the plane on the runway in Chicago.

to article