[thechat] No-one likes us... we don't care (apparently)

Martin martin at easyweb.co.uk
Sun May 25 07:16:16 CDT 2003

Now, I don't know how many of you on other continents are aware of the
Eurovision song contest.

Basically, it's an annual Europe-wide event, where groups from 26
countries perform live on TV, then each country awards points based on a
phone poll (or in some countries, a jury). Top country get 12 points, then
10, 8, 7, 6, ..., 1. And 16 countries get nothing.

You *might* think that the points awarded have something to do with how
much the nation in question liked the song/performance in question. And
some countries do indeed do more than nod towards this naive concept.
However, local politics and national alliegences have much more to do with

Thus, Greece & Cyprus always give each other top points (and normally give
a big fat zero to Turkey, although relations have obviously warmed in the
last year), while there are obvious voting blocks in Scandanavia & the
baltic states.

Usually, the UK does OK - somewhere between 3rd and 10th is a fair bet,
mostly because our entrant novelly has some idea of what semi-decent pop
should be.

However, this year, we got null points. Zero. Our song was pretty
reasonable Euro-pop fare, so it can't be that. The explanation everyone's
assuming is that it's a punishment for snubbing the rest of Europe in
favour of Bush's approach to Iraq.

This is one of the countries that beat us btw:
which goes to show that Europe has some kind of sense of humour.

Here's some background info:


"Names, once they are in common use, quickly
 become mere sounds, their etymology being
 buried, like so many of the earth's marvels,
 beneath the dust of habit." - Salman Rushdie

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