QUIRKY WORLD ... Swedes’ behaviour under the covers is under investigation

SWEDEN: Worried that Swedes aren’t having enough sex, the government wants to analyse the bedroom activities of its citizens in a major study.

It’s been 20 years since the last in-depth study of the sex habits of the Scandinavian welfare state, so Public Health Minister Gabriel Wikstrom says it’s high time for another survey.

One of the goals of the investigation, set to be completed in 2019, is to find out whether there’s any truth to Swedish tabloid reports Swedes are having less sex than they used to.

“It’s important to investigate whether that is the case and if so, what the reason is,” he wrote in an opinion piece in the Dagens Nyheter newspaper.

If stress and other health issues are affecting Swedes’ sex lives, he said, “that is also a political problem”.

Morgan Eklund, an official in Wikstrom’s office, said the minister was referring primarily to a 2013 survey of 3,000 people by the Aftonbladet tabloid, which found that lovemaking is on the wane in Sweden, a country with a reputation of being sexually liberated.

Eklund said the survey was not scientific enough to be used as the basis of government policies “but it points in a direction that can be interesting to follow up”.

In a separate article on the government’s website, Wikstrom said the Social Democratic-led government needs better information about people’s sex habits to guide policies related to sexual and reproductive health. “Sex is an area that strongly influences people’s health, so we can’t just talk about things like, for example, venereal disease, but also things that are positive and lust-filled about sex,” Wikstrom said.

Fat cat

ENGLAND: Theresa May might have promised to clamp down on fat cats but there is a new greedy feline at the treasury.

The new prime minister has made tackling corporate greed central to her mission but the arrival of Gladstone the cat as Whitehall’s third official mouser bucks the trend.

Battersea Dogs and Cats home revealed the black cat is “quite greedy”, “absolutely loves his food”, and was rehomed to the treasury with an activity feeder to encourage him to eat slowly.

Fleshy plant

USA: A foul-smelling plant known as the “corpse flower” is finally blooming at the New York Botanical Garden in New York City.

The rare blooming began on Thursday afternoon after more than 10 years of growth. It’s native to Sumatra’s equatorial rain forests, and emits an odor like rotting flesh while it’s briefly in bloom.

The bloom at its peak only lasts about 24 to 36 hours — and it could be years before the flower blooms again.

More power to them

ENGLAND: Pokémon Go players are being given emergency charge to their mobile phones while out shopping.

Brent Cross and Highcross shopping centres are hiring a team of Recharge Rescuers to help customers top up their mobiles with power.

The team will be touring the centres, particularly around areas where there are known Pokestops and Gyms, offering portable battery chargers.

Bikini bust

SWEDEN: She was off duty and wearing a bikini, but that did not stop police officer Mikaela Kellner from catching a suspected thief in a Stockholm park.

Kellner and three friends were sunbathing when a homeless man selling newspapers approached. She said that after he left, one friend noticed her phone was missing, so Kellner and a fellow police officer gave chase. A photo of Kellner pinning the suspect to the ground has been trending on social media .


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