marshtide: (Parkvakten)
[personal profile] marshtide
And here we have a longer piece by Liv Strömquist, from her latest volume, Prins Charles Känsla/Prince Charles Feeling. This strip is not perfect in every way, but there sure are some points in there.


1. Presenter: Hello? Hello? Can you hear me?

2. Presenter: There we go! Good evening!

3. Presenter: So here we are again, standing outside the "Take care of a man World Championship" committee's headquarters...
...awaiting the announcement of this year's winner!

4. Presenter: The take take of a man world championship's permanent secretary Leif Strömkiss will soon come out and reveal who will be getting this prestigious prize this year!

5. Presenter: There's a lot at stake, and big shoes to fill, for whoever gets the title! Who doesn't remember the previous winners, for example...

6. ...Mary Welsh Hemingway, who received the prize in 1965!

7. Mary was awarded the prize after having cared for a severely alcoholic, paranoid and fat Ernest Hemingway through the last decade of his life.

Hemingway: Pour mojito in my mouth!


1. The myth is that Ernest Hemingway's mother really wanted a girl.

Random Hemingway biographer: The greatest trauma of Ernest's life was that his mother - when he was small - dressed him up in a - brace yourselves now - a DRESS! That is to say, the traditional clothing of the "other sex". Yeah, you heard right.

2. Luckily enough for Hemingway his mother's wish didn't come true. Had Hemingway been an old woman who, alcoholic and overweight, staggered around and told dirty sailor's stories that only she laughed at so that her double chin wobbled...

Woman!Hemingway: And then Pascal THREW off his tiny shorts... Ho ho ho! Yeah, you heard right.

3. ...there probably WOULDN'T have been a ten year younger, beautiful and loving man, who kept her home in order and comforted her with gentle caresses and a soft, indulgent gaze.

Woman!Hemingway: Uuuuuuuuuuuuuuurgh!! I'm HUNGOVER!!!
Man: Dearest! I'll stand by your side and smell of almond-oil.

4. Presenter: A fantastic effort from Mary Welsh Hemingway!

5. Presenter: Another - perhaps even more legendary winner - is... Oona Chaplin!

6. Oona was conveniently enough 36 years younger than her husband Charlie. This was during the last 17 years of his life - when his ever worsening health demanded day-round care from a pair of young, spry, sexy legs.


1. Oona spent "the last beautiful years" - as Lasse Stefanz would put it - providing almost twenty years of healthcare to a wrinkly mime.

Charlie Chaplin: Look, look! A glass wall!

2. Presenter: But we mustn't lose ourselves in the labyrinth of memory! Because it's almost time for Leif Strömkiss to come out and reveal THIS YEAR'S WINNER!

3. Presenter: There are of course many favourites! Naturally I'm hoping for someone Swedish! For example Karin Järegård, who - quote - was "like a mother" to Enst-Hugo under their 49 year long marriage...*

* Karin Järegård in doccumentary "Ernst-Hugo", Erik Bäfuring 2009.

4. Presenter: Or Maria Wine, who lovingly and patiently watched over Artur Lunkvist's sickbed... disputed medical knowledge, and actually WOKE him from his COMA!*

* "Oliktänkaren - en bok om Artur Lundkvist"/"The dissident - a book about Artur Lundkvist", Pené Vasquez Diaz, Ordfront 2006. READ IT! Bloody good!

5. Presenter: Oh but look, here comes Leif!

Leif: Hrr-hm.

6. Leif: It is with great pride that I present the winner of the "Take care of a man World Championship" for the year 2010. And the winner is...



- Finally!


1. Nancy met Ronald Regan when they were both B-movie actors in Hollywood. Ronald already had a taste for positions of power, though, and was president of the Screen Actor's Guild, the actors' union.

2. The Screen Actor's Guild is known for their registration of suspected communists in Hollywood during the 40s and 50s. They had made a long, long list of people they suspected were commie bastards.

- the tall guy
- the annoying guy
- the guy who is, like, blond

3. Ronald Reagan basically hated communists more than anything else!! Why? Because he loved individual freedom, of course!

Reagan: *happy sigh*

4. Sometimes when he thought about individual freedom he became so happy that he teared up. He thought:

Reagan: To be free, is there anything more beautiful?

5. Reagan: One dances around like a beautiful gull on a reasonably blue sky. One has no ties to anything. Not even the ecosystem! One is unrestrained. One has one's own two tiny hands and with them... one makes something which is completely one's OWN! For example... huge, huge amounts of money.

6. One is like a herring! But rich. And without a shoal.


1. All this was threatened by communists. That was why Reagan loved his job, spying on and mapping actors in Hollywood. Included on the list of suspicious individuals was NANCY!!!


Charlie Chaplin

2. When Nancy learned abotu this she became extremely anxious. She was just a sweet little aunty! Who for example liked porcelain, astrology and dress jackets. How could they have made such a mistake?

3. Nancy went up to the Screen Actor's Guild and said:

Nancy: There must have been some kind of mistake! I'm not a communist at all!

4. And Reagan thought that she was such a sweet aunty. So he said:

Reagan: OK! I'll strike you from the list!

5. Then Nancy and Ronald got together!!!

6. Then Ronald became the president of the USA. He was president for a number of years. He and Nancy received state visits from for example Prince Charles and Diana.


1. Ronald worked to make sure that people would have to take care of themselves. He lowered taxes and cut back on public welfare. If one wants to have for example healthcare, one can pay for it oneself, actually!

Reagan: The poor need to shape up! The state can't sit by their sickbeds like a gigantic nurse!

2. In Nicaragua the people chose a socialist government. To Ronald it was disgusting that a cuddly collective arm should embrace the poor and divide things up fairly in equal piles, like an annoying mother!!

Reagan: Grow UP!!

3. So Ronald financed the paramilitary right-wing militia Contras, which for example blew up schools and hospitals, and tortured and executed civilians (including children) in Nicaragua under the entirety of the 80s.

4. He did it to undermine the socialist project in the country, and for that he loved freedom so incredibly much.

5. Then Ronald Reagan developed Altzheimers. He forgot everything he had believed in. He became like a baby, but really really ugly. He couldn't go to the toilet by himself.

6. He couldn't come up with a brilliant entrepreneurial idea. He couldn't put money in funds. He couldn't fold his arms and pull himself together and shape up and make his own fortune. He could only drool and blither around. He didn't know what he was called. He didn't know who he was.


1. But then he looked to the side of his bed. There was his wife, the little aunty. She sat there. She blew on a spoon of hot chicken soup so that he wouldn't burn his tongue.

2. She wiped drool from his chin. She fluffed up his pillows. She matched his pullovers.

3. She knew that his favourite sweets were jellybeans. She pushed jellybeans between his lips.

4. She knew that his fabvourite jellybean flavour was coconut.

5. The sociologists Ulrich Beck and Elisabeth Beck-Gernsheim describe in their thesis on love that kind of "care by the sickbed" as one of love's refuges. They write:*

"Sickness can bring about a new form of dedication and self-sacrifice."
"To pour love over one's beloved also becomes a gesture against a heartless society."
"Even greedy people give away everything, and it makes them happy."

* Beck & Beck-Gernsheim, "The normal chaos of love", Polity press 2004, p176-180

6. They continue:


* Beck & Beck-Gernsheim, p176


1. So maybe Nancy was a communist after all! In any case she took care of Reagan for ten years, up to his death in 2004.

2. She stayed by his leathery old body, like an ageing indian who refuses to leave their sweatlodge, even though it's irrational and unproductive.

3. Maybe Nancy looked into Reagan's empty, uncomprehending eyes and said:

Nancy: Individualism and independence is an extremely shallow interpretation of life's conditions. People's basic condition is that we are fundementally dependent on each other. We are all tied together. We are also the trees. We are also the earth. We are also newborn babies.

4. Nancy: One can't ignore the responsibility we have to show care and look after nature and each other. The conditions for experiencing the feeling "freedom" are that an endless, invisible care is practiced all around the whole time - in origin from the earth herself.

5. Or she said something completely different! For example:

Nancy: Cupcake! Shall I mash up your crabcake?

6. Presenter: Fantastic! Truly well-earnt. Congratulations Nancy! That's all from the "Take care of a man World Championship! Thanks from little old me!




2. Presenter: Hi again! In our previous series, "Take care of a man World Championship", we learnt that it can be bloody great at have a girl/woman/younger wife/wife if one wants care!!!

3. Presenter: But what does one do then if one is in a relationship and the WIFE suddenly needs care? Someone who has the answer to that is - INGMAR BERGMAN!

4. In an article Bergman's daughter Maria von Rosen explains what Ingmar did when his wife, Ingrid von Rosen, was dying of cancer:

Maria: "Ingmar didn't want her to be at home."*

* Svenska Dagbladet 04-11-14

5. Maria: "He couldn't bear to see her suffer, disappear."

6. Maria: "So I took care of her during the end of her life!"

7. Presenter: So you see! It might seem impossible to steal the martyr role from a cancer patient, but Ingmar managed it brilliantly!

8. Presenter: Ingmar offers this tip: When a woman gets sick, try to find ANOTHER woman who can take care of her! Good luck!

Date: 2011-05-04 02:44 pm (UTC)
laughingrat: A dainty logo that reads "Ladies' Sewing Circle and Terrorist Society" (Hatchetations)
From: [personal profile] laughingrat
Oo, this is really amazing and interesting. And yeah, parts are really problematic! There's a lot to chew on here. (Also, I'm not sure how much of an invalid Chaplin was during those last years, but heck yeah, his marriage to Oona was, um, problematic. All of his relationships were exploitive in some way...) But you know, too, these comics are a certain subset of discourse, right? They're snarky, they're harsh, they're cutting...they're not always going to be smooth, they're not always going to cover all the angles. The role of stuff like this is a complicated one.

Personally, I really like Woman!Hemingway. :-D And the bit about how sickbed care is like communism is priceless.


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