TND – Watching Eurovision So You Don’t Have To (also, winning at Dinner)

May 22, 2013


This is the now annual ‘I watched Eurovision so you don’t have to’ post. Normally, I would ask why you aren’t watching Eurovision, because normally it’s awesome. But this year was possibly the most boring edition of Eurovision I think I’ve ever sat (skimmed) through – it’s not a good sign when the host has the most interesting costume of the evening. If you’re a glutton for punishment you can watch the whole show streaming online. Mostly, however, I’d recommend just watching the performances from Romania, Finland, and Ireland. Denmark won (why?), but Romania was robbed.

That said, brace yourselves, here we go.

(1) France
The best that can be said is that it’s kickier than solo female artists from developed nation usually are, which is not to say it’s good, just marginally less dreary than it might be. I think she’s going for a Tina Turner kind of vibe, except that Tina Turner is a lot cooler (and has better legs).

(2) Lithuania
This is actually too boring for a pithy comment, and the lyric about the shoes he’s wearing today (one called love) is just odd.

(3) Moldova
The light show on her dress is kind of fun? I’m not entirely sure what to make of the white party back up dancers

(4) Finland
The back up singers in the insane red vinyl aprons totally make this performance – I think they’re supposed to be the cater waiters at the wedding? That said, one of the better (read, entertaining) performances of the evening). Huh, if you stick around to the end of the performance, it turns out it’s a lesbian wedding, complete with a kiss – apparently it’s a protest against Finland’s decision last year not to vote on gay marriage (and got the Eurovision broadcast axed in Turkey).


(5) Spain
Apparently Spain’s financial crisis has not impacted the overly maudlin nature of their entry in any kind of positive (read, insane) way.

(6) Belgium
He’s like the emo-est thing to ever emo . . . or possibly a serial killer, those dead eyes are going to give me nightmares. Has anyone checked? Did the back up dancers all make it home?


(7) Estonia
So apparently Estonia’s economy is developing nicely? That’s what the sheer tedium of their entry suggests, at any rate.

(8) Belarus
Now this is more like it; this is why I watch Eurovision – a singer who emerges from a giant disco ball, a dress made of tin foil, and back up dancers who apparently time warped directly from a Wham video.


(9) Malta
Malta made the finals?  Malta never makes the finals. And now we know why, it’s like 500 Days of Summer entered Eurovision, too hipster for words (seriously, there’s a ukulele player on stage), who even knew Malta had hipsters.

(10) Russia
Also too boring for words, and apparently wearing the bridesmaid’s dress from her sister’s wedding.

(11) Germany
Sort of generic pop circa 1992.

(12) Armenia
I say this every year, but it bears repeating; the whole lyrics in English thing does nobody any favors, at least before you could only assume the lyrics were terrible, now you have proof. Apparently the entire contest this year is stuck in the mid ’90s complete with ripped jeans, looped scarf, and wind machine.

(13) Netherlands
This is the usual female solo performer for Eurovision. Alone on a stage, singing desperately earnestly about . . . birds apparently? Not flying?

(14) Romania
Oh hell yes. Vampires + barely barely clothed dancing thralls + counter tenor. This is the epitome of Eurovision. How did this not win?


(15) United Kingdom
This suffers even more in comparison to Romania’s glorious insanity.

(16) Sweden
What is with all the drapey white costumes this year?  Was fabric dye being rationed?

(17) Hungary
It’s like Europe discovered Death Cab for Cutie this year . . . welcome to the early 2000s.

(18) Denmark
Manic pixie dream girl with back up fifers. Wait, this won?  Are you kidding me?


(19) Iceland
That is a lot of artfully unwashed hair

(20) Azerbaijan
Where are my dancing gumbies?  Where are my sparkles?  This matt earth tone palate is not why I watch Eurovision.

(21) Greece
Bonus points for men in kilts, and further bonus points for not looking like every other performance this evening . . . I mean, it’s not good, but at least I’m not bored.

(22) Ukraine
Starts off with Thor carrying the singer on stage, but then sadly he walks off stage. Needs more Thor.


(23) Italy
[snooze] At least he’s wearing a good suit; trust the Italians to be well dressed even when they’re sending me to sleep.

(24) Norway
Mostly I just want to give her a more flattering dress

(25) Georgia
Wait, is this still on?  I think I fell asleep.

(26) Ireland
Yes! Half naked tattooed men in tight (tight!) leather pants beating celtic drums. I have no idea how they’re related to the singer, but whatever it’s Eurovision it’s not supposed to make sense.


(baked) Chicken Parmesan
Braised Garlic Bread

(baked) Chicken Parmesan
I totally win at Dinner this week, because this was 90% made two weeks ago in preparation for the fact that I was going to be away this weekend and would therefore have to go grocery shopping on Monday night after work, which is when I usually do Dinner prep. So, two weeks ago I made the tomato sauce, toasted the bread crumbs, mixed the flour, butterflied the chicken breasts, and then threw all of it into the freezer. On Sunday night I pulled the chicken and tomato sauce out of the freezer. On Monday night I separated and whisked the egg whites (and made the garlic butter for the bread). On Tuesday night I pulled the seasoned flour and bread crumbs from the freezer, breaded and baked the chicken, reheated the tomato sauce, and smeared egregious quantities of garlic on bread. I am so impressed with myself, you have no idea.

Recipe previously given: The Merits of Gloating

chicken parmesan

Braised Garlic Bread

Recipe previously given: Dear Food & Wine

garlic bread

Normally I’d roast or grill the asparagus, but I already had two sheet pans in the oven, and too many people at Dinner to accommodate all the asparagus I’d need to do it on my grill pan. So, boiled for a scant 2 minutes and then dressed with lemony olive oil, salt & pepper. Pretty much doesn’t matter what you do to asparagus I’m going to think it’s awesome.




  1. Why is there no picture from the Romanian performance?!?

    • It was inadvertent! Has now been rectified. Although, it is very hard to find a single image that conveys the sheer wonderful insanity of that performance.

  2. You’re right, Romania was robbed. Maybe if they had given him vampire fangs…

  3. OMG, Romania was cra-MAZING. Robbed indeed!

  4. OMG, Romania WAS robbed. Cezar!

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