Letters to America: An English Nobleman On Iceland


Dear mother,

It has been an eventful year, as far as Icelandic rap music is concerned – and no, I assure you: You have not just recovered your consciousness on an SNL set – there really is a thing called “Icelandic rap music.” It is quite good, in fact. I suppose some would even say that “the scene” is pregnant with a host of eccentric, circus-like characters – who have learned, also, to recite poetry to rather aggressive music.

Herra Hnetusmjör

Take Herra Hnetusmjör, for example. His name, I am told, when translated into our most esteemed English language, means “Sir Peanut Butter,” which is really rather wonderful – for if he went by “Peanut Butter,” merely, one would think him rather ridiculous. But the “Mr.” lends him an air of dignity and grandeur. It is rather akin to prefacing Alex Ferguson with the noble “Sir,” – that is, of course, if Alex Ferguson's real name were “Onion Butter” (or if he were named after some other smooth, viscous mixture).

Here he is, Mr. Peanut Butter, celebrating the sweet symphony of his two chains "clinging" together with some rather deft dance moves. (Incidentally, I think that I shall henceforth adopt Sir Onion Butter as my nom de plume.)


Then there's the Daughters of Reykjavík. I do not suppose that you have heard about them, separated, as you are, from the rest of the civilized world by the Atlantic Ocean, and disunited, as you also are, from Canada by your subtle hatred of their famous dog sleds and picturesque Prime Minister – which is predicated, ultimately, upon envy ... or so I suspect.

The Daughters of Reykjavík are really a rather fierce corporation of women, who never leave the house unless they have mustered a crowd that exceeds, at least, a large integer. Some have compared them to an itinerant rugby team with microphones, for they are touring a lot. I like them.

They've got moxie.

Aron Can

And, of course, then there's Aron Can (pronounced “Jaaahn,” like the way Kelly Preston addresses John Travolta when she needs something). He is only 18 years old and yet he has recently invested in three upscale condominia in Reykjavík's “shadow” district and is often seen knocking back cocktails with Baltasar Kormákur at the Petersen Suite. I am told that the bartenders have stopped carding him – Aron Can, that is – on account of his threatening to buy “the establishment from under them,” which I suppose is a justifiable commination, what with all his condomia.

I have attached a video of him pantomiming numerous phone calls in one of his apartments, 

Well, I seem to have gotten somewhat carried away in my descriptions of some of these characters when I was going to tell you about our eventful year, and by “our” I mean, of course, “the agents and eyewitnesses of the Icelandic rap music scene” – but I suppose it shall have to wait until my subsequent letter; 

I am pressed for time, after all, having agreed to “counsel” (take part in a timely intervention) the president of Iceland on his questionable choices in matters of apparel.

He was newly seen parading the streets of the capital with something akin to a child's scarf on his head.

Dearest Regards,
Sir Onion Butter

PS. Young Thug was here in July. He is now my favorite adolescent ruffian. I heard that he robbed a bank while he was here and that his management afterwards released a statement condoning his actions on account of how nicely they harmonized with his image.