This summer, the garbage cans of Helsinki will have something to say … to you … in six languages. The strange people who brought you wife-carrying contests and team berry-picking (you just can’t make this stuff up) are happy to present the talking trash receptacle – which comes with a musical “thank you.” Nowhere else in the world is litter discouraged with such positive reinforcement. Maybe that’s why I didn’t see much trash on the ground when I was over there.
Last year at this time, Helsinki put four of these devices in the center of the city. They were so unbelievably successful that the Finns have doubled tripled down on the concept. Look for eight more of these contraptions in the Finnish capital this year. Simo Frangén, a popular Finnish TV personality, was kind enough to give his voice to the cause. The new trash cans will be located near Esplanadi, Senate Square, Sibelius Monument and Temppeliaukio Church.
These crazy devices will speak Finnish, Swedish, Japanese, English, German, Polish, and Russian.Also, some will provide fun musical sounds created by high school students from the Kruununhaka district of Helsinki as part of the Helsinki City Public Works youth campaign.”