Every Time We Say Good Bye

Claes Andersson 30.05.1937 - 24.07.2019

Claes Andersson 30.05.1937 - 24.07.2019

We mourn the passing of Liikkukaa - Sports For All honourable chairman (2004 - 2019) Mr. Claes Andersson

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Together, we had warned of the threats within social media as early as 2004, at the same day as facebook first went online. Claes Andersson was a visionary in so many ways. It was him, as minister of culture, who first launched the Finnish Sports Worlds campaign against racism. He warned us that “It might take 400 years to overcome racism!” Young as we were, we did not want to accept this time period. We wanted to see the end of it during our lifetime, but meanwhile, we see that the great man had a point. We are proud and feel blessed to have been able to walk 15 of those years together. We see it now as our duty to resurrect the work against racism in the original true intention. Until it is our time to pass on time to pass on the torch. Is it a coincidence that the now being leader of Claes party and minister of Culture carries his name? We will look forward to be working with the wonderful Li Andersson.


Claes had also been one of the faces of the first ever RESPECT campaign, which was later adapted by the European Football Association and is still carried out by Liikkukaa - Sports For All Ry.

It is no wonder that Claes was a great inspiration to us during all this years, for the multi-lingual psychiatrist and politician was a true renaissance man. Additional to writing books, movie scripts and poems, he also vice chaired Helsinki Football Club FinnPa and was regular seen as a Jazz musician at his favourite place, the jazz-club Storyville. We will greatly miss you, forever remember you and carry your spirit in our future work.

Time to say Goodbye:

“Have sat at meetings, ticked off items on the agenda, recommended, turned down

Approved the minutes (change "should" in §123 to "ought")

Gone to movies, museums, bars, libraries, homes, deserts, caves

Shoveled snow, played with the children, screamed at the children been bitten by dogs

Traveled in Europe, the States, Africa, met people Bought and sold junk and cars, waited for buses, trains, have biked

Given speeches, lectures, been dumbstruck, signed petitions, demonstrated

Read (tons of) books, papers, brochures, hares' and crows' tracks in the snow

Stared at TV, drunk beer, wine, schnapps, kefir, tasted sperm

Awakened in my own bed, in another's, up to now have always awakened

Dozed off over books, steering wheels, bottles, women, in buses, closets, on guard duty

Put on pounds, lost them, exercised, lifted weights, brides over thresholds, odds and ends

Been disappointed, happy, angry, indifferent, enraged, in love, indifferent, empty

Been to funerals, weddings, soccer games, visiting, to crayfish dinners, outhouses

Witnessed deliveries, death throes, christenings, autopsies, orgies

Written plays, traced hearts in the snow, poems, demand notes, prescriptions, crib sheets

Shot rifles, pistols, water guns, mortars, slingshots, blowpipes

Had the mumps, the shakes, anxiety, depression, paranoia, inflamed urethra

Fought with conservatives, radicals, myself, Finns, windmills, my wife

Rented rooms, laundry rooms, apartments, tuxedos, cars, bought houses, potted plants

Been plagued by guilt, small children, nightmares, red-headed lovers

Have asked the meaning of it all

Brooded, deliberated, pondered, constructed, conceived, stopped thinking

Found the questions irrelevant and answered with the answer of the senses”

Claes Andersson, from Tillkortakommanden (´Shortcomings´, 1981) Translated by Rika Lesser

Christian Thibault, 2019