the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

The End of an Obsession

For several weeks now, I’ve received comfort from the music of ABBA, but now it is time to move on. In fact, several bloggers have emailed me saying that if I embed ONE MORE ABBA song, they would —

1) Delete me from their blogroll.


2) Start unflattering rumors about my Penis.

It is probably important for me to think of other things, mostly for my mental health. Can you believe that I even THOUGHT about flying out to London for the annual ABBA Picnic at St. James Park?

The London ABBA picnic has been taking place every July since 1999 and is a fantastic opportunity for ABBA fans from London and far beyond to meet up on a (hopefully sunny!) summer’s afternoon and discuss love, life, the universe and a certain Swedish foursome! ( If the weather is really bad, we will meet in the Hop Poles pub in Hammersmith)

Hey, English blogger-friends, like Rachel, Ariel, or Susannah — do one of you want to go instead of me and take some photos?

I don’t usually “fall in love” with celebrities, but I’ve really taken a liking to Frida (the brunette).


I’ve been daydreaming about her so much that I don’t even read blogs anymore.

Well, except for one.

For some mysterious reason, I am very drawn to Run Jen Run written by Jenny in Chicago.


She’s an OK writer, I guess, but that’s not the real reason I return to her blog over and over again…



Anyway, I’m sorry I inflicted so many ABBA songs on all of you:

Does Your Mother Know?

Mama Mia

Dancing Queen

Take a Chance (link in post’s comments)

Super Trouper

Ring Ring

I must have been depressed and listening to ABBA was like an S.O.S. cry for help.

Hey, that reminds me… (once more for old times’ sake)

A Year Ago on Citizen of the Month: Why Gay Marriage Should be Banned


  1. jenny

    neil, neil, neil. you don’t have to try to explain away what happened at tequilacon.

    there was something in the air that night, the stars were bright, neil kramer. they were shining there for you and me, and sophia made three, neil kramer.

  2. Non-Highlighted Heather

    Start unflattering rumors about my Penis.

    What penis?

  3. better safe than sorry

    i was just talking to a friend yesterday about “whatever happened to abba?”, he said one of the women is now living in seclusion, i think maybe it’s the brunette.
    you should have a pic of sophia up there as well, i see a resemblance from the pics i’ve seen of her as well.

  4. ElizaF

    There is nothing like Dancing Queen when you have had a glass or two. Even the most ardent Abba protesters turn into singers into hairbrushes for that one.

  5. ElizaF

    There is nothing like Dancing Queen when you have had a glass or two. Even the most ardent Abba protesters turn into singers with hairbrush microphones for that one.

  6. Neil

    ElizaF — I forgot that you live in London. what are you doing in July?

  7. Neil

    I can’t believe I’ve been writing about ABBA obsessively. You do realize that this is what happens when Sophia takes a break from editing my posts?

  8. Shelli

    I need someone like you to tell me to quit my whining.

    I like ABBA. To a point. 🙂

  9. heather anne

    Yeah, I totally have a crush on Jenny. Good call.

  10. Rhea

    Remember, Neil, that woman from ABBA doesn’t look like that anymore. That photo is old. She’s, like, 73 now.

  11. Neil

    Rhea, she’s 62 and she still looks hot.

  12. You can call me, 'Sir'

    Ha! A pub named Hop Poles! Those wacky Britons and their off-the-wall innuendo!

  13. brooke

    As far as I’m concerned, there can never be enough ABBA. I am now going to commence packing my apartment to the sounds of ABBA Gold.

  14. Neil

    Danny — I know you like this stuff —

    Posted at 9:48 PM

    Here is the preview blurb on next UK Channel 5’s documentary ‘ABBA’s Biggest Secret’ from the UK Radio Times:

    “You may think that the Swedish super-group’s biggest secret was the name of their costume designer, and with good reason – they undoubtedly had the worst clothes of any group in the seventies. However, the secret referred to in the title of this film is that Abba’s Frida Lyngstad was the illegitimate child of a German officer conceived during the Second World War.

    This was uncovered by journalist Harry Edgington while he was researching an unauthorised biography of the band. He discovered that Frida’s mother was actually Norwegian, not Swedish, and her father was Alfred Haase, a young Nazi officer who, Edgington says, was performing his patriotic duty to spread his “good genes” while occupying Norway. It’s not a unique story.

    As many as 10,000 German/Norwegian babies were born during the occupation as part of the Nazi’s plan to replace Europe’s “inferior races” with “pure-blooded Aryans”. And most of these children were treated appallingly because of their “tainted blood”.

    It is an interesting, albeit sad, story, and one that has affected many people’s lives. It is also one that would probably not get much coverage if it were not for the fame of Frida.” Jane Rackham.

    On the listings page there is a small medium-shot of Frida singing on the ’79 tour. It will be interesting to see how much specific coverage the Frida story gets – an hour of TV is a long time to fill, but they are clearly selling it on her “guarded past”.

  15. Neil

    And I’ll say this one more time. You might think ABBA is “gay,” but any man who doesn’t get hot seeing Frida on that piano bench during “Does Your Mother Know?” needs to return their “straight” membership card.

  16. Finn

    You pay for the tickets, honey, and I’ll go to London with you. You’ll fit right in with the English guys. Everyone thinks they’re gay too.

  17. V-Grrrl

    I second non-highlighted heather.

    who would cross the pond for ABBA?

    the rolling stones caused a 30 mile long traffic jam in Brussels this week. real men can’t get no satisfaction.

  18. JanePoe (aka Deborah)

    The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem. I’m SO glad that you are commiting to end this addiction because we in the blogosphere were contemplating an intervention. Remember, one day at a time. xx, JP

  19. Not Fainthearted

    The part that disturbed me most about this whole thing was how after all this time I knew EVERY.SINGLE.WORD. Not to mention not matter how I tried to be cynical and jaded about it the tunes did make me feel better. I can see why you’ve gravitated to them these last weeks.

    What about the GoGo’s? They were a cheery bunch of lassess, with a little more of an edge…

  20. Jazz


    That’s all.

  21. Dana

    Oh, thankgod you decided to listen to your constituency! I told you a while ago that you would be cured if you would just rent the movie “Priscilla, Queen of the Desert.” But did you listen?

    But now that you’ve done all this research and have a huge set of videography on your blog, I think it’s time for you to set up a poll. Which one do people think is the most vile, and which do they like the best? Which outfit is the worst? Etc. That might be an effective way to wrap it up and say goodbye to the whole phenomenon.

  22. Rhea

    OK, I went and found a current pic of your sweetheart from ABBA. You’re right, she’s still hot.

  23. Danny

    ABBA has a secret Nazi past?? You’re right, Neil, I’m in!

  24. Neil

    As a writer of a baby boomer blog, Rhea, you should be the first one to agree that you can be still be sexy at 60. Although, I’m not sure I would want her to do the piano bench thing now… with her arthritis…

  25. Neil

    Not Fainthearded — The Go-Go’s? Give me a break. That’s like non-fat ice cream compared to the real thing. Although I like the women of ABBA, it is the two guys, Benny and Bjord, who are the real musical geniuses behind the band. And they were two couples — very dynamic backstory. And from the oddest country for a pop sensation!

    Dana — which outfit is the most vile? I think they are all fantastic. Seriously.

    Danny — do I know you or what?!

  26. Churlita

    Thank god you stopped talking about ABBA…Whew!

  27. Non-Highlighted Heather

    Musical geniuses??????? I can’t take this anymore. I’m in actual physical pain.

  28. Lefty

    Don’t worry about those unflattering penis rumors.

    I’ve seen your penis on craigslist, and it’s FANTASTIC.

  29. Pearl

    ABBA? Again?
    There’s one thing left to say, Neil:

    MAMA MIA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  30. Miss Syl

    Frida waits in bed for you, Neil Kramer.

    Okay, I know it’s only virtual, but, well…knowing me and knowing you, it’s the best I can do.

  31. Miss Syl

    Hm, your hyperlinks don’t show up in any obvious way. There is one there, if you mouse over it.

  32. Ash

    Neil, you made me make my husband download an Abba documentary for me to watch. Shame on you! ;P

  33. kapgar

    Oh goodie, I’m not the only one to think she looks like the ABBA chick. 😉

  34. dating for christian singles

    We’re a group of volunteers and opening a new scheme in our community. Your site provided us with valuable information to work on. You’ve done
    a formidable job and our whole community will be thankful to you.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Social media & sharing icons powered by UltimatelySocial