Typography

Learning the Finnish they don’t teach in school

Kaamos (noun)

English equivalent: Polar night.

Example of usage:

”Kaamos voi aiheuttaa kaamosmasennusta niin ihmisillä kuin eläimillä. Oireita ovat mm. unihäiriöt, ylensyönti, seksuaalinen taantuminen ja erakoituminen. Kaamoksesta voi selvitä matkustamalla ulkomaille.” (”Kaamos can cause depression in people as well as animals. Symptoms include e.g. sleep deprivation, loss of sexual appetite and becoming a hermit. Kaamos can be survived by travelling overseas. “)

Kaamos describes the time of year when the sun does not rise above the horizon at all. Strictly speaking, this occurs only within the Arctic Circle, but there is no other word which quite describes the horror that is the Finnish winter. During kaamos, drunks become permanently frozen to tram stops, people sob at the mention of the word ‘Spain’ and no one ever smiles at all, ever, for any reason. Even during May Day you can not feel too safe, because just like the bad guy in a horror film kaamos never dies. It just waits until you’ve gotten a tan before coming back to crush your spirit.

David Brown with Tarja Jolma