what is a “russ” and why does it seem like the biggest deal in SKAM ( aka vilde ) ?
so if you’ve seen from season 1, you’ve heard about the famous “russebussen”, or how in season 2 you see william and his friends partying in a bus. so you’ve probably been like “wtf is this shit? do norwegians actually obsess over this?”, well the answer is yes and no. but i’ll explain more of that later on in this post.
so to the first thing, what is a russ? well to sum it up shortly a russ is someone who is finishing up their last year of videregående, or as some would call it, high school.
russefeiringen or russetia will normally last for about a month, starting in april and ending on the 17th of May, the norwegian constitutional day. during this period you will often find severely sleep deprived, hung over 19 year olds.
but the russ do other things than drink and party; they also dare each other to the most hilarious things like walking around with bread shoes, go on a date in the school cafeteria with a first grader ( they’re 16 don’t worry! ), walk to the shops or around town with skiis on their feet, sit in a trolly and order a happy meal at McDonalds drive through, and so much more.
but you also need to watch out, because if you are a first grader or a second grader, you can easily end up on the “terrorliste”, meaning that the 3rd years fuck you over like duck taping you to a pole whilst they throw water, flower, egg and all other stuff. you can become kidnapped, where the russ will take you and drive you to a place and then just leave you there, but they mostly leave you at a buss stop and make sure that you have the money to get home again.
but the russ often have fights among each other, where the “enemy” can be the neighbouring city, the schools that are close to yours or the famous “blå russ vs rød russ” ( i’ll get into the colours in another post ), or the østkanten vs vestkanten ( east and west parts of oslo, the rich kids vs the middle to lower class kids )
now during the fights, you will often throw eggs at each other, egging down cars or other russ. the meeting grounds are trashed after the “fight”, but it’s all for a little fun.
now to the russebus and russebil. both extremely popular amongst the russ.
now this is a russebus, they don’t need to look like this, in fact if you google russebusser, you can find a lot of really cool busses.
but anyways, russebusses normally cost around 1 million norwegian kroners, but normally they can reach up to 4, depending on how much work you’re putting into the bus.
now people normally save up from the 9th or 10th grade with a group of their friends just so they can get this bus. the busses look amazing, and is a great place to sleep during landsstreff and a lot of room to party in, on the top and lower decks. this is mostly popular in the oslo area, but you can find them all over the country.
now this is a russebil, again really popular choice for the russ. here a smaller group of friends will save up money to buy the car ( or perhaps their parents have one for them to have ) and they decorate the inside and outside, often writing their names on the car.
now i would say that the cars are more popular, because of the huge price difference. but hey, if you got the money and if you saved up, why not?
now all of this is all fun and all, but the russ also have to be extremely careful not to party too hard, specially with our new fraværsgrense of 10%. and the fact that our exam period is right in the middle of russetia. so whilst you are celebrating that YAY IM DONE WITH SCHOOL, you’re actually not and have to worry about reading with a hangover. the politicians did this in the 70′s in hopes that the russ would party less, well it didn’t work at all.
of course you don’t have to be a russ, but it’s fun and it’s why we go all out, it’s our last celebration before we head of to universities or jobs. so this is the shortest version of what the russetia is and i swear i’ll write up what the different colours means and the different types of russ you can be, but that should be in a post of it’s own