Everyone seems to be ready to give advice on how to relax. How to live.
Here is a selection that I have come across in today’s paper as we travelled from Wales back to England.
There are all those Scandinavian things: lagom, Swedish for “in perfect balance” and hygge, Danish for “luxuriating in leisurelinessl. Now comes kalsaririkänni, Finnish for “drinking at home, alone, in your underwear”, or more briefly, “pantsdrunk”. It involves stripping down to clothes you feel comfortable in and drinking beer, essentially your undies. It can be a solo activity or a shared activity, apparently deepening a relationship. Okay!
Personally, I don’t see the point in actually being in your underwear, especially as the stuff I have read seems to be male-orientated and suggest underpants rather than anything else. Why not just curl up in your dressing gown. Mind you, I might also go as far as to say that you don’t need beer and crisps. A good book or a DVD will surely suffice.
Here’a another one, autonomous sensory meridian response - also known by the acronym ASMR. It seems that soft, tranquil noises can give people a tingling sensation and “an almost euphoric feeling of calm”. Some call these sensations “brain tingles”. And there are ASMRtists who produce videos of themselves chewing ice, stroking towels, or scratching their beards. People watch these videos and feel calm.
Dr Brian Richards, writer of a book called Brain Tingles, recommends stroking children’s arms, or repetitively tapping or crinking paper, to calm children and help them fall asleep. Not everyone is a fan. China’s anti-pornography office banned ASMR videos to “ protect minors from harmful content”. Swansea University, however, did a study that shows that 17 times more people use ASMR techniques to help them fall asleep rather than for sexual stimulation. As for me, I just like the head massage I get at the hairdresser’s.
Elsewhere in the paper I read about new definitions of class. Social class, that is.As global poverty declines, according to these newspaper reports, 3.8 billion people can now be defined as “middle class”, making “middle class” = “not poor”. Tat is what they say!
If global poverty is on the decline, I want to know why there are so many hungry people in the world.
For those who shop at Waitrose, the posh supermarket is offering a service where they will deliver your order to your home and put the perishables away in the fridge for you. This is, of course, for busy people who cannot be at home when their food arrives, presumably because of work or social commitments. The security aspect is covered by the deliverymen wearing cameras to record what they do in your house.
Barbara Ellen in the Observer comments! “Waitrose poking about in my fridge? I don’t think so.”
She does not like the idea of a deliveryman judging her on the tidiness of her fridge or the fact that she has inexplicably saved a minuscule lump of cheese.
I am reminded of a comment my sister once made about people feeling the need to tidy up their home before the cleaning lady came!
It’s all about how other people live!