Sitsit is pretty much an event that has to be experienced, not explained. They are one of my favorite things about studying at a university! Shortly explained sitsit is a place where we sit around (a) long table(s), drink alcohol, sing songs and if we're lucky, eat food. There are different kinds of sitsit, the formal ones where everyone dresses up nicely and follow the sitsi-rules and party etiquette strictly and then there are the not-so-sophisticated sitsis where we walk in in overalls or costumes and in the late evening the whole place looks like a zoo.
Here's the whole thing more detailed:
You sign up for sitsit and pay the 13-20 euro fee. Then you start to plan what you're going to wear. There is usually a theme or other dress code. Some sitsis that I have been to has had themes like: space, jungle, "horrible teenage year outfit choices", your alter ego. So you can definitely use imagination and come up with ridiculous costumes. You'll pack with you: ALCOHOL (it's necessary, believe me) and song book. Our university has a own song book full of sitsi-songs. They usually have funny lyrics that are about studying, beer, Tampere etc... BUT THEN... there is a part of the book called "not publishable songs" that have outrageous lyrics that are about violence and sex. Usually they are sung towards the end of sitsit when people aren't too shy to sing them anymore.
Okay, now that you have your costume, beverages and the song book, you are ready for sitsit! You go to the sitsi-place and check from a paper on the wall, where you are going to sit. Sometimes the sitting order is randomized and sometimes you can ask for a certain person to sit as your avec when you are signing up for the sitsit. Usually the seats are organised in girl-boy-girl-boy order. So you walk up to your seat and if your table avec (sitting next to you) is there, he will greet you and offer you your seat. In other case you have to stand up and wait for him. If you are male, you will have to stand up until the whole table has arrived.
On the table, there are drinks (usually cider/beer, a shot and wine) and the glasses are fulled throughout the sitsit. The venue looks usually something like this:
And the fanciness of the sitsit could vary like this:
The sitsit will begin when the master of ceremony hits a big cane to the ground. They will explain the rules of the sitsit and tell where the bathroom is. I will not get to this so detailed because there are rules for each knock on the ground, for example 3 knocks mean that the ceremony master is thirsty and she/he have something to say. This means that their avec will pour them a shot and after that the ceremony master will say something to the crowd.
During the sitsit, anyone can get up, cling their class, introduce themselves and have a small "speech". They are usually super short and informal and they end up with a song that everybody will sing. The songs sometimes include games and after each song, you will take a sip of your drink. There is a song that goes like :"whoever is a freshman of year X, get up. whoever is a freshman of year X, get up. Take a glass to your hand and rise it to your lips. Drink away drink away drink away for god's sake!". The song begins from the current year and every participan who has started university that year will get up and stand on their chair, choose a drink from the table and drink it completely empty while others sing. As a sign that you have drunk it, you'll have to turn your glass/can upside down on your head so that if you were to cheat, all of it would fall on your head. The song will be sung until the last one of that year's freshman has drunk their drink and then it goes to the earlier year. This is one of my favorite sitsi songs.
During sitsit, usually two speeches are held. During speeches, everybody will listen and stop drinking/eating to respect the speaker.
The sitsit will end at master of ceremony's note and after that usually a band comes to play and after a while the after party begins at a different place (usually a bar). Those who are not drunk enough, will make it through there. I usually just go (= crawl) home at this point.