Subway Beggar Retaliation

For the last couple of years, a new kind of beggar has operated in the Stockholm subway. These people walk through the carriage handing out little photocopied notes, and then they move back, collecting the notes and whatever spare change people are willing to give. The notes say things like “I am an unemployed Bulgarian violinist rendered incapable of playing by carpal tunnel syndrome. I have three children to feed. Please help.” Harmless enough, I guess, but a bit of a nuisance in a culture unused to beggary.

A friend of mine got really tired of the note beggars on his daily commute. He made the observation that many of them didn’t seem to be able to read their own notes as they were written in Swedish. So he pocketed a few beggar notes, went home and produced variations on them with the same typography. The next time a subway beggar gave him a note, he exchanged it for one of his own, and then the beggar moved on and presumably gave the doctored note to another subway traveller.

Here’s what one of my friend’s notes said.

“I am a Romanian porn film director, looking for ugly perverts to star in my next production. I will soon be back to look at volunteers and take their measurements.”

He’s such an evil man.


  1. #1 Nixxie
    January 10, 2007

    HAHAHAHA! That is pretty funny.

  2. #2 paddy
    January 10, 2007

    Great! I had in fact thought about doing that very thing, but those guys always look very scary…

  3. #3 Katherine Sharpe
    January 10, 2007

    Tres, tres evil.

  4. #4 pablo
    January 10, 2007

    Yes, be deliciously evil! Imagine the possibilities.

  5. #5 The Ridger
    January 10, 2007

    I find that to be so unkind that I’m almost speechless.

  6. #6 Martin Rundkvist
    January 10, 2007

    Yeah, it’s kind of a way to trade in karma for laffs.

  7. #7 J-Dog
    January 10, 2007

    So much for the stereotype of the humorless Swede. Brilliant!

  8. #8 Martin R
    January 10, 2007

    The Germans are the humourless ones. Scandinavians are almost Englishmen.

  9. #9 Poppo
    June 24, 2007

    My 5 year old grand daughter, Julia, was waiting for Mommy to come get her, after an overnight stay, along with her 10 year old sister and her 1 year old brother.

    Each had one of their new toys, busy at play. Julia had begun pasting stickers on the furniture, instead of in the sticker activity book.

    Dreading the labor involved in removal of sticker glue from fine furniture, I mentioned that she might want to save some for Mommy’s new van, a Honda Odyssey.

    Nana stopped her reading, looked at me with that most intense frown, and stated that I was pure evil.

    Of course I am in total glee over the entire exchange!

  10. #10 Martin R
    June 24, 2007

    Haha, yeah, children and stickers are a manifestation of Elemental Evil.

  11. #11 Mary
    June 24, 2007

    The English have humor?

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