Slate Magazine asks, 'is Petter Northug a jerk?'

The Local Norway
The Local Norway - [email protected]
Slate Magazine asks, 'is Petter Northug a jerk?'
Jerk or no jerk? Petter Northug with friend - photo:

You'd think Norwegian cross-country skiing ace Petter Northug would have enough on his plate, given his thus-far medalless Olympics. But now US magazine Slate has made it worse, rating him "certainly a jerk" in its really very funny Olympic Jerkwatch column.


"Eight out of 10 for Petter Northug Jr., who is certainly a jerk, but who, it must be noted, is also the most entertaining jerk I’ve covered thus far," the column's author Justin Peters concluded, after running through a list of Northug's jerk-like activities. 


Peters based his conclusion on Northug's past as a "world class trash talker" -- taunting Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf after vanquishing Sweden's skiers, and mocking Norway's Scandinavian rivals for their falling currency, and, most recently, promising Russian skier Maxim Vylegzhanin that he would "destroy his life so that he can never set foot on a sports track again.”
He also cites his highly un-Scandinavian brash grandstanding, as  exemplified by his latest musical outing, “Jävla norrbagge,” or “Fucking Norwegian,” in which, according to, “Northug sums up some of the highlights in his career”, and his own reality TV show Sirkus Northug. 
He also makes  a glancing mention of the photo Northug has on his website of him with his arm draped around a blow-up doll (Peters doesn't know it but it's probably a jokey reference to the debate in Norway over whether Northug is single or not). 
Perhaps out of kindness, perhaps ignorance, Peters doesn't even mention Northug's lacklustre performance over the last couple of weeks. 


Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also