Tag Archives: russia

Book Review: The Vikings

Culture change is hard.

I’m sure if you clicked on the link, you expected me to go into detail about the funny helmets and the wonton killing and whatnot.  Sorry to disappoint.  The biggest thing I took away from the book as a marketer is that culture change is hard.

Robert Ferguson’s “The Vikings: a History” focuses on the years from the late 7th century to the early 12th century, when bands of warrior-traders fanned out from Denmark, Sweden and Norway on raids and conquests.  I read the book because of this recent find of a potential Viking settlement in Newfoundland.  I’d always wondered how the hell Scandinavians made it to North America and menaced Sicily in roughly the same time frame.


Someone’s about to have a bad day

Turns out the Vikings ranged even further than I had thought.  In addition to the short-term excursions to North America a half-millennium before that Genoan fellow‘s travels, the Vikings also:

  • Sailed up the Seine to attack Paris and later conquered northwestern France (hence, “Normandy” for the Norsemen)
  • Conquered a large chunks of Ireland and Britain as well a bunch of those islands where they make Scotch
  • Founded Iceland
  • Colonized Greenland, where they first encountered Native Americans
  • Sailed across the Baltic, portaged boats to the Dnieper River and founded Russia in Kiev
  • Continued south down the Dnieper to the Black Sea and traded with the Byzantine Empire
  • Also traded with Arabs, as evinced by hoards of Arab-minted coins found in Scandinavia

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What if it were Red Friday Instead? (Humor)

With the recent commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, I got to thinking, “what if the Commies had won?”  Already, American brands stand in for America herself as a protest target.  Witness recent Russian harassment of McDonald’s restaurants in response to Western sanctions related to Russia’s flagrant interference in Ukraine.  Imagine what they would have done if they had gotten ahold of our mighty consumer apparatus wholesale.

So, here are some ideas of what brands would dot the American landscape if Communism had prevailed:

  • Stal-mart
  • Dacha Depot
  • MiGDonald’s

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