The president of Finland has invited us to come visit!

What if we want to stay? Can we stay at his house? Will he at least invite us to dinner one night?

He says nice things about us, but I suspect he’s had about enough Americans for now.

Here’s a list of words that mean the opposite of “diplomacy”. It’s amazing how every single one of them applies to Donald Trump.


  1. says

    No politician would be so undiplomatic, of course*. But I wouldn’t be surprised if the actual Finnish President agreed with the sentiment in private.

    *Except President Trump

  2. mailliw says

    It amused me when during the spleen venting, Trump tried to put his hand on Niinistö’s knee and was duly swatted away.

    I understand that from a Finn’s perspective coming with ten feet is considered invading personal space unless you know someone very well.

    As the great Finnish director Aki Kaurismäki put it when asked about the Finns’ famed lack of small talk; “foreigners often ask me how I am, but before I have had time to think about it properly, they have usually gone away”.

  3. Rich Woods says

    @mailliw #3:

    This is the Aki Kaurismäki who, when relocating Shakespeare’s Hamlet from medieval Denmark to a rubber duck factory in 1980s Finland, expressed the national character by compressing the entirety of the first two scenes of Act I into the words “I saw yer dad”, responded to with a grunt.

    (I think I’ve remembered that right. It’s been a long time since I last watched it.)

  4. davidrichardson says

    There’s a hoary old Swede-Finn joke about small talk.

    One Friday night a Swede and a Finn get together to crack open a bottle of vodka. The Swede pours two glasses and says, “Skål!” The Finn just looks at him and they both down their shot. The Swede pours another two and says, “Skål!” again. Same thing happens. The third time, just before the Swede has a chance to say “Skål!” the Finns says, “Have we come here to drink or talk?”

  5. unclefrogy says

    about the only things I know much about Finland are Jussi Vares ( a really good hardboiled detective) and “beyond the press” on youtube
    from that looks like a little funny with a slightly dark side but a low tolerant for BS

    uncle frogy

  6. mailliw says

    @Rich Woods #4

    I can thoroughly recommend Kaurismäki’s last two films Le Havre and The Other Side of Hope. Both beautifully humane stories about ordinary people helping refugees in trouble and delightfully and ironically humourous.