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Functional, punctual and awesome: my first 12 months in Finland

When I was a teenager in my home country of Bangladesh the only thing I knew about Finland was that it’s the land of Nokia.

After completing my bachelor’s in electronics I worked as a journalist for 3 years, I then decided to come to Finland to pursue a master’s at the University of Oulu.

I observed a number of interesting characteristics about Finland in my first 12 months of living here and I present them below…

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See why the internet is going crazy for this video of Black Friday chaos in Finland

Finns are well-known for their calm manner and stoic nature. So much so, it takes a lot to get Finnish people riled up. Losing to Sweden (again) at ice hockey, beating the world at ice hockey or beating Sweden at anything being notable exceptions. However, maybe this will all change with the advent of Black Friday, the American materialist frenzy created by the land of uber-capitalism to get people to buy crap they don’t need.

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The 5 most fascinating facts from Crowst’s Finnish sausage survey

What is it with Finns, grilled sausages and summer? Every Friday night you’ll find hordes of people queuing up at the grilli for a taster. You’ll find sausages at hockey matches, being sizzled at the summer cottage, feasted on at picnics and parties. Amazingly, every Finnish banger is based upon the very first commercial sausage, HK Sininen, launched in 1963. Despite this, Suomi sausages are still a much-loved part of Finnish culture.
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Finnish made famous: magnificent mentions of Finland throughout Tinseltown

Promo pic for Blade Runner 2049

Blade Runner 2049 just premiered in movie theaters across the globe and caused quite a stir. Not only are longtime fans of the original Blade Runner saying it’s a remarkable rendition of an untouchable classic, but there’s also Finnish spoken in the movie! Alongside Finnish actress Krista Kosonen, 2 other actresses have claimed their moment of Finnish fame while discussing who Blade Runner is onscreen.

 

Consequently, this Blade Runner rouse has sparked my pre-existing interest in the many other times I’ve heard Finnish (and Finland) referenced in movies and TV shows. So here’s a collection of the coolest…

 

 

1. What your favorite TV characters think about Finland

 

Fargo

“Buddy of mine says they swear by this stuff in Finland.”

“Well, they’re a bunch of sex-crazed alcoholics, so they should know, right?”

 

 

 

Gilmore Girls

Rory: “Grandma. We were just talking about you. How are you? How’s Helsinki?”
 
Emily: “Cold. Unaccommodating. A population of walking dead.”

 

Veep

Dan (on Helsinki): “I’m sorry that I ever set foot in that fucking fish-eating, indie-film fucking hellhole.”

 

Fringe

Walter: “As they say in Finland, there’s more than one way to roast a reindeer.”

 

How I Met Your Mother

Ted (on his best man speech): “So now I seem like a total train wreck to all my old high school friends. And a bunch of people in Finland. The auto-tune thing got kind of big over there.”
Ted’s speech that became famous: 

 

2. Five times Hollywood hacked the Finnish language

 

Charlie’s Angels

 


 
 

 

 

The Big Bang Theory


 

The Hudsucker Proxy


 

Swordfish


 

Archer


 
 

3. Other magnificent mentions of Finland

 

Community


 

Conan – hates my homeland


 

Conan – drinks Lapin Kulta


 

 

 
 

Confessions of a Shopaholic


 

Seinfeld


 

Simpsons


 

Spongebob Squarepants


 

SNL – Finnish talk show Kalle

 

 

 

Veep

 

 

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Edited by Michele Lawrence.

12 fantastic facts why Fun Bowling and Bar in Helsinki doesn’t suck

Bowling Balls. Photo by Joonas Tikkanen.

We all cling desperately to warmer weather and scattered sunshine, but once those notions are gone for good with the encroaching winter months, it’s beneficial to have sanctuary spots in Helsinki where you can grasp onto your remaining sanity.

Fun Bowling and Bar is one of those spots, and here’s why…
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8 surefire ways to spot a Finn abroad

Ice swimmer looking happy

Every nationality has their own identifiable characteristics no matter how stereotypical they may sound. As a Finn I hardly recognize these behavioral traits in myself until I’m outside my home country, Finland. With this list you’re sure to never mistake a Finn for anyone else again, especially while traveling or residing abroad…

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Ruska relief: 35 stunning photos of Finland’s autumn colors

Yellow autumn leaf on the ground, photo by Tom Woodward

Finland’s climate is notorious for skipping long intermediary periods of warmish spring and fall. Summer turns to… something else pretty quickly. That somefthing else usually happens in September, in Finnish literally “Month of Autumn” (syyskuu).

If you’re out and about in Finnish nature during late September throughout most of October, you might witness ruska. That’s a Finnish word for autumn colored foliage. In many places over the world, ruska puts up quite the show.

But due to the long, dark winter in Finland, ruska really is last call for enjoying nature. Unless you like stumbling around in the cold and dark. Which is totally okay, we’re not judging.

In any case, we went scouting Flickr’s community for some ruska goodness. This writer also pillaged his own archive if Instagram snapshots, for your enjoyment. So, whether you prefer the great outdoors in urban streetscapes or out in the middle of nowhere, we hope we can remind you to at least enjoy a few more strolls outside before the long grey dark sets in.
 

1. If you’re in luck puddles or lakes might remind you to look up at the trees.

 

 

2. Lapland is stunning during ruska.

 

3. But so are all the lush suburbs all around the country. This view is from a high-rise building in Vuosaari in Helsinki.

 

4. I prefer staying in my inner city hoods, around Kallio and Vallila. But not because of some pretense of hipness…

 

5. …but because it’s going to retain a sense of place when ruska is over and fall is at its worst.

 
 

 
 

6. To each their own. But the point is: nature lovers, don’t waste a minute of this.

 

7. Anyway, you can’t get this in the cities.

 

8. However, nothing will stop you from enjoying wild cloud formations wherever you can see the sky.

 

9. Seriously, these skies are quite something.

 
 

 
 

10. Let’s cut the BS though, we were talking about autumn colors, ruska.

 

11. Again, available wherever they haven’t cut down the trees.

 

12. Autumn colors are caused by the process during which chlorophyll levels decrease in leaves.

 

13. Chlorophyll, the bringer of greenery, and an essential component of photosynthesis, is replaced by cork cells as sunlight and wamth decreases.

 

14. Eventually leaves drop. Without photosynthesis, they’re redundant. So, unless you have matching facades, get your nice photos taken while the leaves haven’t yet fallen.

 
 

 
 

15. Eventually, the end result is this: naked trees, with leaves in a slowly decomposing brown mess.

 

16. Luckily, some trees stay green.

 

17. So, if you notice moments post August 15 that pass for summer, be mindful and savor them.

 

18. One week, you’ll be out and about and enjoying everything about your surroundings.

 

19. Then, it’ll suddenly get rainy, in a way that just feels chilling.

 

20. And before you know it, you’ll just forget to enjoy your everyday surroundings. Moving outdoors becomes a tiresome chore, one which requires preparation.

 
 

 
 

21. Sure, those August and September sunsets are quite something.

 

22. They almost make you appreciate the looming darkness.

 

23. But by early November, a handful of pretty sunsets are among the few outposts of sanity you’ll have left. In Helsinki, you’ll miss the show if you don’t leave work between 4 and 5 pm. Farther up north, any typical office gig will leave you out of daylight.

 

24. With my brain chemistry, only something like this furball can force me to leave the house while there’s light around noon on November weekends.

 

25. But of course, outdoorsy people will crawl the forests for some last edible berries or mushrooms.

 

26. Or they’ll be using their inexplicable energy, to take some last sips of whatever magic takes place at summer cottages.

 
 

 
 

27. Make no mistake, to take a photo like this, you’ll need to get our in the middle of nowhere and be prepared for the freezing cold as soon as you’re not in direct sunlight.

 

28. Here, a regular human just sees a weird big rock, maybe with some understanding that the ice age dragged it there. Outdoorsy folks probably measure it up as potential shelter or whatever.

 

29. Personally, I prefer everyday scenes like these, and muttering about things like ugly elevated highway bridges.

 

30. Luckily I can get dramatic shots like this one just a fifteen minute walk away from my house.

 

31. Again, with the clouds.

 
 

 
 

32. And I much prefer to spend the silver hour on my way home.

 

33. When darkness falls, I want to be real close to home.

 

34. This is the kind of nature sightings I like in fall: old NYC style taxis with campaign stickers for Dick Nixon.

 

35. Anyway, time to head out before everything looks like this.

 

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Thomas Nybergh is a writer and producer for Ink Tank Media in Helsinki. He’s really into topics like information security, but he writes about anything. Occasionally, Thomas gets around to sharing photos on Instagram.

Thomas also co-hosts and produces a podcast based on Very Finnish Problems, the social media sensation.

Title image by Tom Woodward

4 reasons why Finland’s lagging behind in electric car adoption and why that’s all set to change

Electric vehicles, EVs, were invented nearly two centuries ago. Hungarian priest and engineer Ányos Jedlik, created the electric motor in 1828.

You’d think then that these cleaner and more energy efficient vehicles would have already taken the world by storm. Indeed, in some places they have. Norway, for example, peaked with over half of new cars sold being EV or hybrids in early 2017.
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