Miska Rantanen

© Heidi Piiroinen

Miska Rantanen (1967) is a Finnish author and a journalist at the largest daily of Finland, Helsingin Sanomat. Rantanen has written and com- piled books on various and rather surprising subjects. Lepakkoluola – Liekkihotellin tapahtumia ja ihmisiä (Bat Cave – the Events and People at the Flame Hotel) takes a look at the history of a warehouse built in the 1940s. Rantanen has also written books on the legendary record label Love Records, and on journalistic blunders that he has accumulated over time. Estonian readers can enjoy his most recent work Kalsarikänni – Suomalainen opas hyvään elämään (Pantsdrunk: The Finnish Art of Drinking at Home. Alone. In Your Underwear, 2018). The title of the work speaks volumes – the direct translation is “pantsdrunk”, denoting the Finnish habit of getting drunk alone, in your underwear. Rantanen uses humour to talk about this phenomenon – making fun of genuinely Finnish things is a genuinely Finnish habit, after all – but he manages to steer clear of both promot- ing alcoholism as well as judging it. In Rantanen’s view, there is a middle ground, a moderate form of concentration that carries the potential of meditation, even enlightenment. Miska Rantanen will talk to translator Mihkel Mõisnik.

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