The most stupid question in the world
By Adeola Aderounmu
Just recently at 2 separate places two people spoke about the question that irritated them the most when talking to people in Sweden.
These two people will probably never meet or have reasons to meet unless I bring them together. I know them from different places and by chance occurrences.
One of them a young woman who has lived in Sweden since she was 2 and who recently returned to Sweden after living abroad for more than 10 years.
The other person is a professor who has lived in Sweden for more than 30 years.
As far as they are concerned the most stupid question in the world is when someone ask you “where are you from”?
This question is arguably the most common question in Sweden. Somehow if you are not careful you will be asking people that question too, unconsciously. This is because you have had to answer this question a million times as an immigrant settled in Sweden.
The argument is that when you live in the United States, it is hard to be asked such a question. Even in Abu Dhabi, you will likely not have to answer that question at all. But in Sweden, be prepared, it is coming again.
There are some children and some parents who have spent their entire life in Sweden, yet they are asked daily by acquaintances and strangers-where are you from?
Some children go home and tell their parents-that they answered-I am from Uganda and Nigeria. Or I am from Sweden and Gambia. But their parents want them to answer like this-I am from Sweden, I was born here.
It is sad actually that no matter your heritage, no matter how long you’ve lived in Sweden and no matter if you are born in Sweden the most common question and of course the most stupid question in the world remains-where are you from?