Many of us are familiar with the idea of stripping to our breathes, opening a brew and watching Tv. But in Finland Pantsdrunk has been elevated to an official activity
It’s been a long daytime: one convene after the other. You leave your office, glad the working day is finally over. You could head out, network until the early hours, but somehow it doesn’t plea. What you need, more than anything, is to relax and de-stress.
You might be invited to turn to the favourite Scandinavian antidotes to stress, lagom and hygge . But are they actually better now? Lagom, a Swedish word, can be translated as” in perfect equilibrium”, or “just right”. Where lagom predominates, all is as it should be. Proportion is maintained: there’s neither too much nor too little … which is where the problem lies. Although lagom encapsulates nearly all aspects of a well-lived life, its puritanism isn’t compatible with the realities of the modern world. The trouble with lagom lies with its emphasis on being a good person: a good person can never certainly relax. They’re too busy incessantly weighing the ethical consequences of every little decision they manufacture.” I could buy a neat bowl of hummus to enjoy with dinner, but that plastic jackpot it comes in is so bad for the environmental issues .”
Denmark, meanwhile, is renowned for its hygge – cuddling ambience and revelling in leisureliness. Hygge is a mug of hot chocolate sipped near an open fire, soft woollen coverings and a row of leather-bound prickles on the bookshelf. It’s those images we see in interior design periodicals and on Instagram. And this is its miscarrying: not all of us have the means to spend our days wrap in cashmere, reclining on an Arne Jacobsen sofa on stormy autumn evenings. Hygge is like a Disney movie that leaves no residence for the mess of real life.
But there is another Scandi option- the Finnish footpath to happiness. Unlike our lovely neighbours, the Finn relies not on lagom or hygge but kalsarik anni , a expression that literally makes” boozing at home, alone, in your underwear “. This know it sounds fanciful but at the heart of this approach lies a democratic model. “Pantsdrunk” doesn’t demand that you disclaim yourself the interesting thing that induce you happy or that you waste a luck on Instagrammable Scandi furniture and quantity your house with more altar candles than a Catholic church. Affordability is its hallmark, offering a realistic remedy to everyday stress. Which is why this lifestyle choice is the antithesis of posing and pretence: one does not upright atmospheric images on Instagram whilst pantsdrunk. Pantsdrunk is real. It’s about giving go and being yourself , no affectation and no performance.
It’s easy to see how pantsdrunk progressed as a response to the harsh Finnish environment, one of perpetual sadnes and solidifying temperatures for nine and a half months of the year. Look out of a window on a Finnish November day and much of the time it’s pitch dark and freezing, a lacerating sleet is falling and the sidewalks are crusted in frost and slush. Often the streets are deserted and human intimacy requires a lengthy and unpleasant trek. And that’s at noon, the brightest time of the working day. No wonder pantsdrunk came into being.
The liberating effect of this Finnish direction to happiness derives from simple ingredients: cozy clothes, alcohol imbibed in suitable sums and no planned of going to go. That’s not to say that pantsdrunk needs to be a solo activity. It can also be enjoyed with a good friend, housemate or perhaps a relative. When practised properly, pantsdrunk with one’s marriage or significant other expands and redoubles the relationship.
All you really need is the foresight to prepare. Pack the fridge full of budget-brand artisanal brew, stock up on immerses, crisps and chocolate- and make sure you have the latest mental drama ready to watch on Netflix. When you get home, immediately strip off your outer seams of investing( the basic rule: take off anything that’s even mildly uncomfortable or formal ). Dressing for pantsdrunk generally represents undressing. Gradually you’ll reach the most enjoyable moment of your striptease: the slow peel off of your sweaty socks from your paw, a sensation that deserves its own Scandi expression. Now saunter to the kitchen and grab one of the coldnes brews from the refrigerator. Sink down on the sofa in your underwear and let out a deep exhale of relief.
If you’re questioning the complexity of this formula, then consider the fact that pantsdrunk is not just Finnish folklore or a self-care phenomenon; it’s also official foreign policy. Nearly three years ago, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Unit for Public Diplomacy launched two emojis of beings sucking in their lingerie in armchairs- a mortal in brief with a beer and the status of women with a glass of red wine- to represent Finnish culture.
As a lifestyle choice, pantsdrunk is not in conflict with lagom and hygge. They all spring from the same Nordic origins and share the same ultimate objective: optimal peace of mind, comfort and equilibrium. Each has been shaped by his history, culture and national reputation. The discrepancies between the three of them lies in their financial history.
When Finland affirmed greater independence from Russia in 1917, it was a poor, agrarian region with a GDP barely pasturing the global average. Life expectancy was low and child mortality high-pitched. Yet, in 100 years, Finland has become a post-industrial learning society and the third most prosperous country in the world. It too achieved the highest total score in the UN’s 2018 World Happiness Report, ranked the most stable, the safest and best determined person in the world. It is also among the least infected and the most socially progressive. Its police are the world’s most relied and its banks the soundest. Free healthcare and university education too helps when it comes to happiness.
Arguably, pantsdrunk is one more way to celebrate the importance of relaxation. Whimsical as its approach is also available, it is very much part of a serious commitment to self-care- even if it’s frivolous, we take it earnestly. It’s also an attitude and philosophy that starts from inner conciliation. You don’t even have to suck alcohol achieve these goals – it’s about taking time out, revelling in a little of what you enjoy and being authentic. Ultimately, the Finnish approaching is closer to mindfulness than it is to the Nordic notions of hygge and lagom. A real pantsdrunk pro knows how to be his or her laid-back self, regardless of the circumstances- no styled Scandi interior necessitated. Follow this logic and you are immersing yourself in true-life Finnish culture.
To order a facsimile of Pantsdrunk : The Finnish Art of Drinking at Home. Alone. In Your Underwear by Miska Rantanen,( Square Peg, PS9. 99 ) for PS8. 59, go to guardianbookshop.com
How to relax like a true Finn
Have the right textiles in stock – your favourite craft brew, crispies, hummus, cheese and biscuits are all key artilleries in the pantsdrunk arsenal.
Find your most comfortable underwear- the really holey ones where you’ve forgotten their original colouring. Perhaps invest in some fleece socks, more. Pantsdrunk is not about going consumed. Make sure you merely drink according to your needs and abilities.
Pantsdrunk does not require expensive furniture and artisanal hot chocolate in the house- only your boozing of option, a cozy sofa and a TV substantiate you’re happy to orgy watch.
It isn’t puritanical. Want to eat two whole sharing bags of crispies? Fine, go for it.
Lots of life veers tell you to switch off your telephones and get outside. Wouldn’t you rather be inside with a glass of wine-coloured, wreaking your path through a series of cat videos?
Read more: www.theguardian.com