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Eurovision?

Ok have decided I am a rubbish blogger – or perhaps I should rephrase that and set the expectation that I will blog once a month – then if I do more, I have exceeded that, but if I only manage this every four weeks, I will be happy :)

Not that I don’t have a whole heap of things lined up that I want to blog about but just don’t seem to get the time to do it.

Anyway, thing that pops to top of heap at moment is some thoughts that came to mind watching the Eurovision Song Contest (contest?! sounds a bit gladiatorial …. shame it isn’t a bit more like that really) last night. Am slightly ashamed to admit that was reasonably excited about watching it. Think that probably comes from the fact that usually there is nothing that I look forward to watching, except CSI and then M complains that he is bored of that or has seen them all so we end up channel flicking.

Although, as expected, most of the songs on Eurovision were pretty s**t there were some quite good ones – I even found myself muttering about wanting to download the winning song (what has happened to me?! note to self to get out more) and found myself quite liking that strange piano and fire thing. Think the best song of the night though was the one they did whilst the voting was happening with the flashmobs etc that was pretty good – or was it just the opportunity to look in loads of ikea-esque living rooms across Europe?! But the UK entry was definitely not a winner. A pretty mediocre song, sung off-key and certainly not a Euro-hit.  However, did we really deserve to get bottom place?

Just before the votes came in they went over to the grand master or whatever he is called of Eurovision.  I have always felt that the Eurovision organisation is a slightly shady bureaucracy which has a “fun” side – ie the Song Contest itself. It almost seems like the customer facing side of the EU itself, a large, opaque organisation which has many, often arcane, processes, but in the case of Eurovision there will be no-one telling us to straighten our bananas. And seeing the smiling? grimacing face of the leader of the whole lot just seemed to reinforce my view.

That makes me sound rather anti-EU which I am not at all and what really strikes me about Eurovision is how isolated the UK is in Europe.  On one level I find the voting deeply depressing.  We have no natural allies.  Even Ireland who could be seen as the nearest ally, aren’t inclined to really go all out for the UK (and who would blame them given our shared history).   In the UK we seem to take a rather sneering, superior view of Eurovision yet the fact that we came last and have no-one really rooting for us does smart.  Even if we didn’t win to know that there were a few countries who you could guarantee to support you, even just a little bit, would be quite heart-warming.

Perhaps we should be relieved that our song didn’t win given that hosting Eurovision is probably the last thing we want to do in the current economy (which goes back to that opaque bureaucracy point – who does pay for it all? how does it work? I could google it I am sure but….).  But I don’t think we can afford, literally and metaphorically, to be so supercilious about it.  We need our friends in Europe, whether to give us a bit of moral support or to support our troubled economy. Frankly I think we don’t really have a clear euro-vision.

Our attitude to Eurovision just seems like a microcosm of our attitude to Europe in the main. We pretend to look down on it, pretend we don’t need it, pretend it doesn’t matter, when actually we would do anything to win it – Andrew Lloyd Webber?!  I think we should start trying to build a few bridges and find some allies.  Or failing that can’t we just ask cheat and ask Paul McCartney to sing a song, that would win it for sure!


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