Now, you’re probably wondering what the heck Eurovision has to do with Australia and why the hell am I blogging about it. Well, it’s quite simple: Eurovision is huge here. Actually, it’s fucking huge. Oooo… “F” word added for emphasis – it must be big!
Yes, Eurovision is big in Europe and it is broadcast in a few other countries, but it’s really big in Australia. So big, in fact, that the hosts of the Eurovision Song Contest give a special shout out to everyone watching in Australia at the beginning of the Eurovision final each year. I’m not even joking. It’d be like Ryan Seacrest giving a shout out to all American Idol viewers in some random faraway country like Madagascar or Mongolia at the start of an episode. Seriously.
Most European countries send one or two commentators to Eurovision each year… most European countries… and Australia! That’s right, we have our own commentators and Aussies can even vote online to pick the unofficial Australian winner. You know I was all up on that.
My mates Ross and Jonathon introduced me to Eurovision when I first arrived in Australia. They – like so many other Aussies – hosted a Eurovision party every year. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend one before the boys moved to China. That’s where the Ross and Jon circle of friends came in. Determined to keep the tradition alive, we all convened to select a new location for Eurovision 2011. Same crowd. Same fun. Different location. That location: Glen and Mooney’s apartment. And everyone had to pick a country to represent and bring food from. Naturally, I picked Israel because I’m a big Jew and because food from Israel is easy: falafel, pita, hummus, and tahini. Yummilicious!
This year, the hosting duties rotated to me, which was totally ok because I love a good, tacky party. And just like last year, everyone had to pick a country for food. To spice it up, I opted to not go for Israel again. My favourite song was Norway, but Norwegian food is notoriously fishy, so I opted for one of Norway’s neighbours: Denmark!
Denmark’s song entry was really good, but probably a bit too radio-worthy for Eurovision. But that’s ok – it’s on my iPod anyway. I branched out and made a trio of smørrebrød – or Danish open face sandwiches.
They were a hit! And I washed mine down with a refreshing Carlsberg from Denmark.
To show my support, Amy even suggested I get a photo of myself with Denmark’s entry when it came on the TV:
Good thinking, Amy! My flatmate, Clinton, chose the United Kingdom and made cucumber sandwiches. Jessica brought a pizza from Italy, and Guy brought some cookies and liquor from Cyprus. Brent delighted us with Portuguese chicken, and Mitch brought sausages on skewers from Germany:
Of course, I was totally fine with David bringing falafel and hummus from Israel:
And we washed it down with Elcid’s sangria from Spain:
There was Guinness from Ireland courtesy of Glen, baklava from Turkey courtesy of Belinda, and some “Azerbaijani” food that looked suspiciously Greek to me. Amy brought a delicious homemade Greek cake:
And Michael made a French tart. Oui!
The award for best food went to Bojan’s palachinke from Croatia. They’re like crepes but less French or like blintzes but less Jewish. They were homemade and we put Nutella on them. Yay! Oh, and I gave Bojan a little trophy for his efforts.
Clinton also got a mini-trophy for winning a little contest that I did about which countries would do well and which wouldn’t (damn you European public for screwing up my score by placing Norway last!) And we (and by “we”, I really mean Clinton because it was all him…) even decorated our door and put flags out and made the little toothpick Danish flags for my smørrebrød. And at the end of the night, I sat waving the Norwegian flag to support Tooji and Glen waved the Irish flag to support Jedward:
And both of us felt super defeated when our countries didn’t do well at all.
Also we were drunk from Belinda’s Jello shots so that probably didn’t help.
But, aside from the tragic outcomes for Tooji and Jedward, the party was a blast and I’m already counting down to next year’s when the rotation dictates that the fabulous Amy and David takeover the hosting duties. I need to get thinking about my country selection and what food I want to bring. Only 364 days to go!