Through July a Swedish man in a California hospital has been making world headlines. Except he's not really Swedish at all. He is an American who is suffering from amnesia, and one friend has speculated that the alter ego "Johan Ek" may have been a character he played when taking part in live roleplaying, a hobby where people dress up as historical or fantasy characters and improvise stories.
Radio Sweden talked to an organiser of live-roleplaying (or LARP) events.
Johannes Axner says that the fear that players would "lose themselves" in the characters they play is an old fear, and that nowadays the hobby is well accepted in Sweden. He says between five and ten thousand people take part in live roleplaying in Sweden.
Adventures played out can be in a traditional medieval fantasy setting, or be based on science fiction. And in the Nordic countries there is also a strong current of artistic, philosophical and politically-influenced LARP events where those taking part create settings that examine and criticise aspects of our society.