Forget hygge and kalsarikännit, the latest Finnish expression you need to know is ‘kyrpä otsassa’


First the Danish expression hygge found its way into the English vocabulary. Then the Swedish word lagom. After that there was the Finnish expression kalsarikännit, meaning to get drunk at home in your underwear. Now there is a new useful expression you need to know about: kyrpä otsassa.

This fun Finnish idiom literally translates to having a penis attached to your forehead, but is used to describe a moody and often difficult person. Certainly a useful phrase to master in modern the modern world, then.

Finnish linguistics expert and heavy user of the phrase Jukka Saaresmaa gives an example.

“So imagine you are about to board a bus, but the bus driver chooses to close the doors in front of you while at the same time looking you straight in the eye. This would be the perfect example of someone who indeed has kyrpä otsassa.”

It is widely agreed on that kyrpä otsassa could have the chance of being the new Finnish equivalent of hygge.

The phrase in fact does not differ that much from the English idiom of ‘being a dickhead’, but has a deeper, more profound meaning. Mr Saaresmaa explains.

”We certainly have a huge, untapped potential of people here in Finland who could easily be described by this phrase. We just need to make the international public aware of this unique, national charasteristic.”

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