Sitsetiquette According to BTSB

Illustrations by Johanna Ruuskanen

Illustrations by Johanna Ruuskanen

Teeny tiny phrase book

Sitsit = An academic dinner party, where we sing, drink and enjoy each other’s company. You get to dress up really nicely and meet other students.

Afterparty = If you didn’t get a chance to sign up for the actual sitsit, you can always come to the after party where there’s dancing, drinking, etc.

“Mellansup!” = when someone shouts “Mellansup!” in the middle of a song, it means that you stop the song for a quick sip and then continue singing.

“Lisää tempoa!” = up the tempo (we want that booze, goddamn). Some songs are reeeeally loooong.

“Punishment!” = in some department parties, you get a punishment for breaking rules. SUB doesn’t traditionally use these.

Ryyppy = a shot of alcohol

The usual sitsit program

Cocktail hour


First song

First course (something light, like soup or salad)

More songs

Toilet break (use it well!) when you can purchase more drinking from the bar

Main course


Second break



The Last Song


-Go and see BTSB articles about suiting up for dummies and see below for dress codes!

-Start getting ready in time. Nothing is more annoying than having five minutes to shower, iron your shirt/dress and so on.

-Get ready to be hangoverish: prepare yourself mentally to skip the class next morning, be sure to get some snacks and soda.

-Be there in time, the cocktail hour is perfect for checking out where you’re seated and chitchat.

-Pour wine and water to your fellow tablemates.

-Be polite!

-Introduce yourself, don’t be shy, there’s no need to. You don’t have to remember the song lyrics or the toasting system.

-Remember that there are always older students you can ask questions if something is puzzling you.

-Sing along, don’t worry if you don’t know how.

-Have fun!

-Make sure that you get home safely, usually sitsit are on weekday nights so check your schedules or take some taxi money with you.

-Remember to thank the sitsi hosts and your tablemates for your lovely evening.


-Panic about dates, you don’t need one for our occasions.

-Get (way) too drunk. The sitsit hosts don’t really care for cleaning vomits.

-Get (way) too drunk and have a truly memorable sitsi speech: You might not remember it, but others will and that’s a promise. (BTSB staff has had some first hand experience about this so we know what we’re talking about!)

-Freak out about drinking, many students in SUB don’t drink alcohol and have equally fun at sitsit.

-Speak when someone is suggesting a song or during a song.

-Mourn if your song already got suggested, there’ll be other sitsit.

-Speak before a song starts.

-Stand up before the break if you're not suggesting a song. This means that you’re not supposed to leave your table before the break.

BUT if there’s an emergency, run to the nearest toilet. And remember gals, a lady never vomits under the table, an evening purse is much more suitable for this.

Other considerations

  • Usually in the beginning, the sitsi senseis introduce themselves and let you know about the rules of the evening.
  • Toasting: The proper way to toast is to raise your glass at eye level, then ladies nod first to left, then to the right and then forward. Gentlemen nod first to right, then left, then forward. After this you take the sip, raise your glass slightly one more time and then put it down. Remember eye contact all the time.
  • Sitsit usually starts with the song “Helan går”, in the end of which you’re supposed to drink, well, bottoms up. But here’s a little tip for those of us who get tipsy quite easily: Just take a sip, seriously.
  • Suggesting a song: you stand up, introduce yourself in English (“Hi I’m Kaisa!”) and then suggest a song. Say the song number clearly (indicated in the songbook). You don’t necessary need to start the song yourself.
Illustrations by Johanna Ruuskanen

Illustrations by Johanna Ruuskanen

Dress codes

SUB is fairly uninhibited when it comes to dress codes. Traditionally in bigger student organizations, for example, Vuosijuhlat is very formal, some even require black tie dressing. But remember, it's a dinner party after all and you should honor the event with decent manners and clothing. Below, I’ve explained the most common dress codes used in our sitsit:

Smart casual (most common) = Quite loosely defined, casual but neat. For men this could mean dress trousers, long-sleeved dress shirt, v-neck sweaters, optional tie and a jacket, but it could also mean clean, neat jeans with dress jackets and a cool T-shirt. I’ve often noticed that men prefer to wear the whole suit thing together and it’s also perfectly fine. Don’t wear just t-shirts and sneakers. For women smart casual in our sitsit usually means a cocktail dress or a skirt. You can also wear trousers and a neat top. You can do pretty much anything with your hair: we've witnessed everything from Mohawks to sparkly chignons!

Formal = actually divided to white tie and black tie categories, but we SUBbers are quite tolerant with this one. Usually we have a formal dress code for the Vuosijuhlat/Anniversary party. For men this traditionally means a proper suit, white dress shirt and a tie. Shoes must be polished and black. For women this traditionally means a long skirt (if you attended Vanhat in your high school, that dress should do just fine!) and an updo or curls for your hair.

About breaking the dress codes: Yeah, most of us do remember Paleface's white Adidas Superstars with the tuxedo in Linnanjuhlat, but come on, that dude could really pull it off! All I’m saying is that dress codes are simply guidelines and you don’t need to get stressed because of them, but still, they’re there for a reason. Dress codes are usually given from the party organisers because they want to help you not to over or under dress for the occasion and feel bad about that. So when breaking the codes, do it with style! Kaisa and the rest of the BTSB staff would like you to have awesome sitsi times!

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