Many of us are familiar with the idea of stripping to our pants, opening a beer and watching TV. But in Finland Pantsdrunk has been heightened to an official activity
It’s been a long epoch: one join after the other. You leave your office, glad the working day is finally over. You could head out, system until the early hours, but somehow it doesn’t request. What you are required to, more than anything, is to relax and de-stress.
You might be seduced to turn to the popular Scandinavian antidotes to stress, lagom and hygge . But are they truly better now? Lagom, a Swedish term, 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 contemporary world. The trouble with lagom lies with its emphasis on being a good person: a good person can never really relax. They’re too busy constantly weighing the ethical consequences of every little decision they stimulate.” I could buy a nice flowerpot of hummus to enjoy with dinner, but that plastic container it comes in is so bad for the environment .”
Denmark, meanwhile, is renowned for its hygge – embracing ambience and revelling in leisureliness. Hygge is a mug of hot chocolate sipped near an open fire, soft woollen blankets and a sequence of leather-bound stickers on the bookshelf. It’s those portraits we see in interior design publications and on Instagram. And this is its miscarrying: not all of us have the means to spend our eras wrap in cashmere, reclining on an Arne Jacobsen sofa on tempestuou autumn nights. Hygge is like a Disney movie that leaves no plaza for the mess of real life.
But there is another Scandi option- the Finnish footpath to joy. Unlike our lovely neighbours, the Finn relies not on lagom or hygge but kalsarik anni , a expression that literally signifies” sucking at home, alone, in your underwear “. This may sound fanciful but at the heart of this approach lies a democratic principle. “Pantsdrunk” doesn’t necessitate that you disclaim yourself the little things that attain you happy or that you waste a fate 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 post atmospheric likeness on Instagram whilst pantsdrunk. Pantsdrunk is real. It’s about making is now going 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 everlasting despair and freezing 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 pavements are crusted in ice and slush. Often the streets are deserted and human companionship requires a lengthy and distressing trek. And that’s at midday, the brightest extent of the working day. No wonder pantsdrunk came into being.
The liberating effect of this Finnish path to prosperity derives from simple elements: comfy robes, alcohol absorbed in proper quantities and no goal 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 spouse or significant other expands and deepens the relationship.
All you really need is the foresight to prepare. Pack the fridge full of budget-brand artisanal beer, stock up on dips, crispies 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 beds of robing( the basic rule: take off anything that’s even mildly uncomfortable or formal ). Dressing for pantsdrunk generally signifies undressing. Gradually you’ll contact the most pleasant minute of your striptease: the slow peel off of your sweaty socks from your hoof, a sensation that deserves its own Scandi expression. Now ramble to the kitchen and grasp one of the coldnes beers from the fridge. Sink down on the sofa in your underwear and let out a late 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. Almost three years ago, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Unit for Public Diplomacy launched two emojis of beings boozing in their lingerie in armchairs- a being in briefs with a brew and a woman 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, solace and equilibrium. Each has been shaped by its history, culture and national reference. The discrepancies between the three of them lies in their financial history.
When Finland proclaimed its independence from Russia in 1917, it was a poor, agrarian country with a GDP just grazing the global median. Life expectancy was low and child mortality high-pitched. Yet, in 100 years, Finland becomes a post-industrial information society and the third most prosperous country in the world. It likewise achieved the highest total score in the UN’s 2018 World Happiness Report, ranked the most stable, the safest and best decided country in the world. It is too among the least corrupt and the most socially progressive. Its police are the world’s most relied and its banks the soundest. Free healthcare and university education too facilitates when it comes to happiness.
Arguably, pantsdrunk is one more way to celebrate the importance of relaxation. Funny 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 gravely. It’s also an attitude and doctrine that starts from inner agreement. You don’t even have to suck alcohol achieve these goals – it’s about taking time out, indulging 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 necessary. Follow this logic and you are immersing yourself in true-life Finnish culture.
To order a imitation 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-life Finn
Have the right materials in stock – your favourite aircraft beer, crispies, hummus, cheese and cookies are all key artilleries in the pantsdrunk arsenal.
Find your most comfortable underwear- the really holey ones where you’ve forgotten their original colour. Perhaps invest in some woolen socks, more. Pantsdrunk is not about get consumed. Make sure you only drink according to your needs and abilities.
Pantsdrunk does not require expensive furniture and artisanal hot chocolate in the house- precisely your potion of option, a comfy sofa and a TV see 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-style veers tell you to switch off your telephones and get outside. Wouldn’t you rather be inside with a glass of wine-coloured, running your course through a series of cat videos?
Read more: www.theguardian.com