Petri Salo:

Chatting privately with Mister Fetish Finland 2018.

The hell do I know about Finland, I thought for myself while trying to doodle some phrases on an empty sheet of paper, preparing to interview Mister Fetish Finland 2018. Not a very impressive list, Mister. And you call yourself Scandinavian? At least there was one three-letter word that I had a connection to, regardless of my nationality – like most guys in the scene should have. I jotted down the letters T-O-M and slowly, a very humble list including a cell phone brand, “sauna” and a Eurovision-entry That Must Not Be Named appeared. “Great”, I thought, “I’m useless”. I slowly let my head fall to the desk and let out a childish sigh. A beat. My eyebrow pops. I remember having had a small conversation with the titleholder on Instagram. Maybe I should just have a chat with him and see if anything interesting comes out of it? But what was his handle again?  I remember it being something with “cock”. It appears I have a very selective memory, which I take note of and finally find his profile. @GloriousCockFighter – I was right! I send him a little message and not long after, a message ticks in, and we quickly arrange to have a chat on messenger.

Petri:
Hello dear!

Chris:
Hello Handsome!
How was your day?

“Handsome”?! Come on, Chris, this is not your Grindr at 3 am.

Petri:
It was good. Quite muddy and wet though. Probably have to have sauna today to get warm and dry again!

Chris:
Omg you ARE Finnish.

Petri:
And Of course we have our own sauna.

Chris:
Oh, “we”, you’re spoken for?

Petri:
Yes. I’ve had the same partner for seven and a half years. He is a photographer. Takes all my photos.

Chris:
Wow… That’s what… 35 gay years?

Petri:
Ha!

Chris:
Is he also part of the fetish scene, or is he the cotton first-wife?

Petri:
Yes he is. But we are both still quite new to the scene.

Chris:
Oh? How new? I can relate to that.

Petri:
We only became active members of our club MSC Finland in January. I have been into gear all my life though.

Chris:
Pardon my ignorance, when were you “sash’ed”?

Petri:
In February.

Chris:
Congratulations!
How does it feel?

Petri:
At first I didn’t really know how big a thing it was. I thought it was this one night and then everyone forgets about it until it’s time to choose a new Mister. But little by little I have realized that it is actually a big deal for me, at least, and I think for our community too; to have someone giving the club and the fetishes some visibility…

Chris:
Let’s step back a little: You know we’re basically relatives, right?
I mean, I’m Danish and you’re Finnish…

Petri:
Yeah… I like Danish guys… I used to date one too…

Resisting… Urge… To flirt… with handsome man… In rubber…

Chris:
Ohhh!
Anyway, on your Instagram profile you present yourself as “Designer city boy turned small town construction worker”… Tell me more about that?

Petri:
I studied to be a fashion designer. That is my original profession. I moved to Stockholm, Sweden, and worked with that a few years after my school. Later, the relationship I was in at that time ended, and interesting stuff was happening in Finland, so I decided to move back. I felt I wanted to move back to the countryside and I start working with construction in my fathers company.

I exchanged the design job for construction work, and the tiny Stockholm apartment for an old 600 square meter community center that we renovated and made into a home. Although I can’t say I never had any doubts, it all worked out in the end.

Chris:
“Interesting stuff was happening in Finland”?

Petri:
Well, a lesbian couple in Finland asked me if I wanted to be a father to their child and that was something I’ve always dreamed of. So I wanted to move back to Finland to be closer to the child.
Slowly, other parts of the puzzle started falling into place. I found my dream home in the town I grew up in, and felt this was the path I was destined to take.

Chris:
So, Petri… You’re a father?

Petri:
Yes. A weekend father. I have two kids actually, 7 and 10 years old.

Chris:
I’m trying to come up with a “daddy” joke here, but I’ll leave it.

Petri:
I have been waiting for those jokes to happen since I became a father, but disappointingly few actually make daddy jokes to me!

Chris:
Knock Knock.

Petri:
Who’s there?

Chris:
Hey Daddy.

Petri:
Lol!

Chris:
Yeah. I’m a writer, not a comedian.
So, how involved are the lesbian couple in your fetish life, and how much do the children know about fetish if anything? Or is that information kept from them?

Petri:
The other parents know about it. It has really not been relevant to mention it to the kids yet. But if they ask questions we will answer truthfully – but with consideration to the level of understanding and age they have. We are a family that speaks very openly about everything.

Once the kids saw one of my rubber outfits in the closet and asked me what it was. I said it was a special costume that I wear sometimes for special events that are only for grown-ups.

Chris:
That’s adorable.
Did he want to try “a special costume” then?

Petri:
Luckily not, but he wanted me to wear it for his birthday party. I politely declined.

Chris:
I think we all would have wanted to see that version of the birthday party.

Petri:
Haha!

 

Chris:
But, hold on a minute… I’m just stalking your profile a bit. You’re 40?!

Petri:
Yes. I just had my 40th birthday a couple of weeks ago.

Chris:
Construction work, partner, two kids, and the weight of a nation elegantly placed on your shoulders – you bear it well!

Petri:
Well thank you! We Finnish people live more than half of the year in a freezer; it helps to preserve the meat.

Chris:
I’m sure we all agree that we love a well-preserved piece of meat.
But back to your title… Could you explain what people/judges are looking for in a “Mister Fetish”? Here in The Netherlands, we have Mister Leather, Mister Rubber, Mister Puppy – all individual fetish competitions in this instance, how does it work in Finland?

Petri:
What the judges and the other members are looking for, I think, is someone who is presentable with good social skills to promote the club as a whole, and to be a unifying figure for the scene.

In a smaller community like ours here, we feel that it’s best to have a united fetish scene that is inclusive and doesn’t separate guys according to their fetishes. For me that’s ideal, as I don’t just have one but many fetishes that keep evolving.

That means we always have all the fetishes gathered together. I love that about our scene in Finland, and I think it makes the club nights more interesting.

With my title, I represent MSC Finland. It is the oldest and biggest male fetish club in Finland. Our club started back in 1976 and not to brag, but Touko Laaksonen – AKA Tom Of Finland – was a very active member of our club since its early days and his presence is still strongly felt in the clubs’ spirit and visuals.

Chris:
That must be an astounding atmosphere to be around.

Petri:
We are very proud of that legacy.

Chris:
So you’re also relatively new in your ruling year. What’s the plan for Mister Fetish Finland 2018?

Petri:
So far, I have travelled to a few European events, but what I’m really looking forward is traveling to the smaller pride events around Finland in my rubber outfit and meet current (and hopefully many future-) members of our club, as I’m hoping to get more people who are into gear and fetishes involved and active. The more the merrier after all…

I also wish I could be the kind fetish guy who is easily approachable and who you could ask anything about fetish life, the club and the community, or anything that might feel intimidating for a new guy to ask about.

Chris:
I can recognize that feeling.

Petri:
I’m fairly new to the scene, and I still often turn to the older members of our community for advice about fetish etiquette.

I keep telling myself that being gay should come with a handbook and a dictionary. With kinks and fetishes on top of it, we’re talking an extreme increase in volumes.

Chris:
What would be your best advice for newcomers?

Petri:
Don’t feel like you have to look or act certain way. Wear what makes you feel sexy, and don’t be afraid to talk to the guys and ask questions.

Chris:
Thank you Petri!
I think I have enough for an interesting article about you.

Petri:
It’s over already? That was easier than I thought!

Chris:
I try to keep it conversational.

Petri:
Since the interview is now officially over I’m gonna go grab a glass of wine and then some Netflix!

Chris:
… You WAITED with the wine?

Petri:
To be honest, no I didn’t …

Chris:
Ha!
I like you.
… Daddy.

I close the conversation and start thinking about a creative way to put all this together.

Want to know more about Petri?

 

Mr fetish Finland2018 @mscfinland. Designer cityboy turned into a smalltown construction worker.Happily partnered to @tikrumikko.

Follow him on instagram: @gloriouscockfighter

 Photography by: Mikko Karekivi