May 2009


Eurovision Surprise

Yesterday was a great day—all of it, no part greater, though, than the evening when I met a few friends, had dinner, and watched Eurovision at home-safer for me than going to Moscow with Russia’s gay rights record this weekend: People Arrested, See Photos, and Mayor calls Pride Parades Satanic! .

Meanwhile, focusing on the actual event, I must confess that I really do not see what everybody liked in Norway’s entry, Fairytale. More on that later, though.

In the late afternoon I met my friends at a bakery downtown—where they had taken a break after extensive shoe shopping. Apparently they visited all but two shoe stores in town before my PseudoWife made a decision. This was all going on, of course, whilst I was at my apartment cleaning and preparing for the Eurovision Song Contest Party.

Sign Says: Kein Trinkwasser

Sign Says: "Kein Trinkwasser"

From the bakery we made a beeline for Divan, Weimar’s fancy Turkish restaurant—although I use the term beeline loosely. We stopping in another shoe shop, looked at a fountain (appropriately labeled “Kein Trinkwasser”), and were distracted briefly by a poster announcing exotic dancing at Divan in June (I was attracted by the photo of the male dancer, but that’s probably just me).

Divan, as it usually is, was great. I had a Sis Kebap which was great. I’m not really an expert on America, but from my casual sampling of America, it’s a shame there aren’t more Turkish restaurants in America. The food is flavorful, the variety wide, and I’d be willing to eat Turkish food again today. Turkey also makes lovely wine—and it turns out that PseudoWifeII (not to be confused with PseudoWife), is a lightweight—one glass of wine and she was over the edge—which made her quite entertaining by the time the Greeks got on the Eurovision Stage later in the evening.

It packed punch!

It packed punch!

On the way back home we stopped by dm (a drugstore) so that I could pick up some supplies (but not the tampons that PseudoWifeII suggested as we walked in the door), and then by the last shoe shop in town, where it was pretty clear the clerk really wanted to have the shop completely closed and tidied-up so that she could leave at 8pm on the dot. We got some dirty looks and I fled for the relative safety of the sidewalk to wait out the shoe shopping.

Back at home we had some time before the show started, so after pouring ourselves some excellent Erdbeer Bowle, I pulled out my Father Ted DVDs and we watched “A Song for Europe”, in which Father Ted and Father Dougal write an entry for the Eurosong ’96 Contest. Their song is “My Lovely Horse”, a ditty celebrating horses:

My lovely horse running through the field,
Where are you going with your fetlocks blowing in the wind?
I want to shower you with sugarlumps,
And ride you over fences,
Polish your hooves every single day,
And bring you to the horse dentist,

My lovely horse,
You’re a pony no more,
Running around with a man on your back,
Like a train in the night,
Like a train in the night.

I bring this up because after the episode finished, we turned on the contest and settled in for three plus hours of fantastic television—in fact, Europe’s Favorite TV Show (Statistically speaking, there’s probably no other TV show that comes close as there are few shows that are shown in 42 countries simultaneously).

With PseudoWifeII liquored up, PseudoWife enjoying her first ever Eurovision experience, and PseudoWifeI’s RealHusband, plus WeimarColleague in the house, it was a rocking good time, even if most of the songs weren’t to my taste.

Now I must confess, I have completely missed the boat. Songs that I didn’t like came in on top, and songs I liked—well, lets just say that Denmark was the highest at 13, whilst Moldova was 14, and Finland… errr… at least no country got “nul point” this year.

In short, some how this year with the revised voting system, there has been a seismic shift in Eurovision—traditional folk music on steroids domination is replaced with a variety of songs in the top five: Two Europopish songs (Norway, Iceland), Two Folkish Songs (Azerbaijan and Turkey), and one completely strange Broadway song (the UK).

And by the way, congratulations to both the UK and France for breaking out of the bottom half where they, plus Spain and Germany have long been relegated. Germany managed to escape the bottom five ranking, whilst Spain managed to make it to the second worst position instead of the worst position it probably deserved—thanks to Andorra’s 12 points.

For my party though, the highlight had to be when PseudoWifeII, in her slightly inebriated state declared that Sakis Rouvas, Greece’s singer, was hot-something I won’t deny.

Meanwhile, back to the winning song: Fairytale sung by a prepubescent wunderkind, Alexander Rybak (who oddly reminds me a lot of Father Dougal). Ok, maybe he’s actually 23, and he was born in Belarus but his parents moved to Norway when he was 4. Finally I find the lyrics are nauseating:

Years ago, when I was younger
I kind a liked, a girl I knew
She was mine and we were sweet hearts

He liked a girl? Really?

I’m in love with a fairytale
Even though it hurts
Cause I don’t care if I lose my mind,
I’m already cursed

Based on his runaway record point total in the contest, he’s not cursed. He’s blessed.

Congratulations Alex: Your song might not be in my personal rotation, but you’ve clearly impressed a lot of people.

7 comments to Eurovision Surprise

  • disenchanted

    I guess there’s no accounting for taste. I thought that Norway song was exceedingly bad, but the gymnastics in the video were kinda’ cool.

  • Regarding the first part of your post about the Moscow protests… at least they are being openly hostile. The new way to bash the gay folks in the USA is to claim that if we get marriage rights, we’re going to be the downfall of many small businesses. *ugh*

    Can the Republicans flog this dead horse any more than they have already?

  • J

    Okay, I’ve read this twice and still don’t know who you voted for. Do tell.

  • The new way to bash the gay folks in the USA is to claim that if we get marriage rights, we’re going to be the downfall of many small businesses. *ugh*

    Eewww. I haven’t heard this one yet. Got any links to someone actually positing this? I’d love to hear the “logic” behind this one.

  • @disenchanted: Eurovision revels in trash. I just need to get used to the fact that the trash this year is stuff I think is trash.

    @CQ: Sources? I’d like to read more (e.g. ditto Sarah!)

    @J: I voted Moldova, Denmark, and Finland.

    @Sarah: I too would like to read more!

  • Katya

    I liked comments on the Russian TV about the Pride. Apparentely the official venue was set and some christian-military activists gathered there to fight the gay movement, police was stationed there too.
    But gay (how could they? 🙂 ) changed the venue and gathered in different city district thus poor christians weren’t able to protest as forcefully as they wanted.
    regretably the police was faster in reaction and we’ve got what we’ve got.

  • […] My Pseudo Wife is a regular reader (but sadly leaves no comments) and I asked her to pick out those posts that stick out most in her mind as I approach my 2,000th blog entry. I know my first entry must your post from May 17, 2009, Eurovision Surprise: […]