Sunday, 17 May 2009

It's that time of year again

Another exciting weekend Chez Loth has flown by and, as FB has just pointed out, I still haven't managed to wash his school jumper for him. Pshaw. I have reminded him that we do not live on the Arctic tundra and he will in all probability survive a May day at school in Edinburgh without incurring significant frostbite. He was not convinced and walked off muttering about how you can't trust the weather forecast. Such a little prophet of doom we have bred. (He's right about the weather forecast mind you, but that is a subject for another rant post.)

My excuse for the lack of clean laundry is that we spent Saturday in Troon visiting my father-in-law, known to the boys as Grandad-in-Troon. FIL hasn't been too well recently but we were delighted to find him yesterday in excellent form - probably the best he has been for about 2 years - and we had a great visit. Husband's sister came with us so we also had a chance to have a good chat during the car journeys there and back. It was about 9.30pm when we got home which is normally well beyond the boys' bedtime. Given the special nature of the day, however, we decided to let them stay up. It was, after all, Eurovision song contest day.

I'll just wait while the readers with highly developed musical taste and discernment click away elsewhere. All gone? Right. We love Eurovision in this house as I think I have said before. We were not sure whether to watch this year given that Terry Wogan is no longer providing the slightly sarcastic commentary which progressed to positively acidic in direct proportion with his consumption of Bailey's. Graham Norton has taken over and we just didn't know if he'd be a worthy replacement. He is.

We had set the programme to record (what? Couldn't risk missing any!) and were able to all sit down together and watch from the start, Husband and I, the boys, SIL and her partner. The first sign that it was going to be a good night was the dress worn by the hostess. Remember those knitted dolls your gran used to make to put over the spare loo roll? She looked exactly like a shiny peach one of those. Fabulous. And Graham Norton's commentary was spot on. During the Cirque du Soleil opening he wondered why wee Jeanette Krankie had been tied to some balloons and I just about spat my tea over the carpet. (If you are not Scottish, you won't know who Jeanette Krankie is. I recommend keeping it that way. Seriously. Google The Krankies at your peril.)

We quite liked the song from Iceland even though the poor girl singing it was wearing what looked like a badly re-dyed bridesmaid's dress from 1983 (Graham Norton's accurate observation again.) There were, sadly, not too many truly mad Eurovision moments. Very few performers' costumes came off, no-one was dressed as an Orc and wearing 14 inch platform boots. Mind you the Albanian entry was bit disconcerting - some chap in all over turquoise blue lycra (including over his face) and two very short and acrobatic clowns doing their best to distract a blond teenager in a tutu. I wish I was making that up. But I am not. I checked. Don't click on that link if you are prone to nightmares, you'll be up for weeks.

If you want a blow-by-blow account of the whole spectacle, The Guardian live blog by Heidi is hilarious. Find it here but be warned, it gets a bit rude! The comments are a hoot in places too with many commenters chiming in with their versions of the Eurovision drinking game. One of them states that he will be having a drink every time there is an appearance of the wind machine or an ill-advised key change. "I do not expect to live to see tomorrow" he says. Having seen the show, I don't expect he did. The only bit the blog misses out is the interval entertainment which was........big plastic bottomed swimming pools suspended above the auditorium with people swimming about in them. These were gradually lowered down to just above head height so the audience could touch them. Hmmm. Not quite "Riverdance" but maybe that's a good thing.

We did decide that recording Eurovision is the way to go: you can fast forward through the duff parts and through all of the voting (you can only watch so many shiny women in evening frocks congratulating Moscow on the great show before you lose the will to live) and get to the end to see who won and whether anyone voted for Britain. Surprisingly, we came fifth despite having a turgid turkey of a song written by Andrew Lloyd Webber as our entry. There truly is no accounting for taste. Anyway, we enjoyed ourselves, Iceland did well and no-one woke in the middle of the night screaming that they were being attacked by wee Jeanette Krankie in turquoise lycra. A good night all round.


  1. Every year I get a twinge of excitement when the Eurovision is about to come on... then I watch it all the way through, trying to keep my eyes open, wondering why I do it to myself! I have decided that we either need to get nil points or we need to win with a terrible song - otherwise it's not worth watching.

    I did like Iceland's song though, and didn't actually notice much difference between Terry and Graham.

    The thing that scares me most about it is that maybe the rest of Europe is sane and we are the crazy ones.

  2. Now I feel that I missed something by scoffing and refusing to watch. Although our commentators take it seriously so it's probably not worth it :P

  3. I forgot it was on, though might not have watched even if I'd remembered. I'm loyal to Terry. However, I did catch the last wee bit by mistake - the voting - and I thought the song that won (was it Norway?) was actually quite good. G Norton did seem quite Woganish, too.

  4. We watched Eurovision, too. The entertainment value is fantastic. The chance to mock the outlandish costumes and productions is too good to pass up, not to mention the actual voting by country by all the silly talking heads.

    Had to admit, though, a lot of songs weren't that bad this year, and Graham Norton did a good job. Although Germany's performance was downright scary. Those shiny tight pants he was wearing - aaghh!

  5. It sounds like something we should protest about until we can see it over here in Canada. It *has* to be better than American Idol. Shiny pants and turquoise notwithstanding.