On Monday night, Mrs. Hatboy and Toop were on TV. Watch here (sorry, seems to be no subtitles, you’ll just have to learn Swedish).

Tonight on Närbild.

Fulliautomatix, Vitalstatistix, and, uh, Panacea? And Impedimenta? I don’t know.

Well, it was on a Swedish show called Närbild (I think that means EXTREME CLOSE UUUUP), on Yle 5, which discussed the issues facing small villages today, what with increasing urbanisation, cities encroaching soullessly on the land, kids not getting off people’s lawns, young people with the iPads and the Zomgs and the foshizzles. Stuff like that. I think if you follow the link you can find the show online, and it’s also replaying on Thursday but I ‘unno.


Basically the show is this, but Swedish.

I was actually quite proud of how well I followed the story, since it was in Swedish and had Finnish subtitles. It was actually quite easy. It took me a while to figure out why they were calling Sotunki “the Asterix and Obelix of Vantaa”, but then I remembered that our boy Göran had described our village as being like that little Gaulish village we know so well, surrounded by Roman camps.

Sotunki in a nutshell.

Sotunki, surrounded by the fortified Roman camps of Aquarium (Itä-Hakkila), Laudanum (Nissas), Compendium (Kuninkaanmäki) and of course the super-fortified Totorum (Hakunila).

Personally, I preferred Göran’s other description of our village, specifically “the pearl of Vantaa”. Which is brilliant, because that makes the rest of Vantaa “the other bits of the oyster of Vantaa”. With all the implications of sliminess, stinkiness, snottiness, and basic revoltingosity that comes with it.


Looks like Vantaa.

But anyway, it was an interesting show, and of course Mrs. Hatboy stated her case eloquently and impressively. It was all about the different ways villages are dying out and suffering from a swelling city-dependence and loss of small-town jobs, and what it’s like to life in a place like this and how we feel about raising our families here as opposed to, say, an awful shithole (I think the overall consensus was “better than shithole”).

Our home village was held up as a bit of an example of how to Do It Right, given that Sotunki gained national park status (of sorts) and has become a protected little enclave right on the edge of the city. Thanks mostly to the stubbornness of the villagers and our resistance to fancy things like street lights and metro tunnels and proper TV reception and Pokemans. There are occasional drawbacks, like the closest general store being about 3km away (I don’t mind that, it’s a reasonable walk) and all a bit impersonal since it services a large residential area; the bus service being pretty shoddy (again, not too terrible as long as you plan a bit, but we have to be constantly vigilant lest The Man take away our single remaining bus route); and the Hakunila post office being closed down (the alternatives, namely the supermarket self-post-service system and the Tikkurila post office, are awful) in favour of probably another karaoke bar … well, these are all things we just have to work with.

There are worse places.

About Hatboy

I’m not often driven to introspection or reflection, but the question does come up sometimes. The big question. So big, there’s just no containing it within the puny boundaries of a single set of punctuationary bookends. Who are these mysterious and unsung heroes of obscurity and shadow? What is their origin story? Do they have a prequel trilogy? What are their secret identities? What are their public identities, for that matter? What are their powers? Their abilities? Their haunted pasts and troubled futures? Their modus operandi? Where do they live anyway, and when? What do they do for a living? Do they really have these fantastical adventures, or is it a dazzlingly intellectual and overwrought metaphor? Or is it perhaps a smug and post-modern sort of metaphor? Is it a plain stupid metaphor, hedged around with thick wads of plausible deniability, a soap bubble of illusory plot dependent upon readers who don’t dare question it for fear of looking foolish? A flight of fancy, having dozed off in front of the television during an episode of something suitably spaceship-oriented? Do they have a quest, a handler, a mission statement, a department-level development objective in five stages? I am Hatboy. https://hatboy.blog/2013/12/17/metalude-who-are-creepy-and-hatboy/
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5 Responses to Närbild

  1. dreameling says:

    Which is brilliant, because that makes the rest of Vantaa “the other bits of the oyster of Vantaa”.


    Tammisto protests.

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