Sunday, 13 May 2018

Goodbye, Viszlát & Adeus

Two magical weeks in Portugal have come to an end. I'm happy that Toy won, even if soon enough it will annoy us to no end (not that failing to win would have stopped it - just look at Dancing Lasha Tumbai).

As for next year, for everyone's sake, I really really hope - and this is coming from a Jerusalem native - that Tel Aviv is picked as venue. Jerusalem is simply not suitable for today's Eurovision life, especially during the weekend. Anyone coming to stay for more than a few days, I would recommend staying in Tel Aviv anyway and taking the high-speed train, if they finish building it by then.

Israel is expensive, full of rude people and has no city as beautiful as Lisbon - but it is a unique and diverse part of the world, with great food that caters for every flavour (if you're into bacon, contact me, I know some places) and a very competitive quality of service. Having been among the ~25,000 people in the Israel Calling concert this year, the country can have a fantastic Eurovision buzz when it's into it, and I recommend going if you can afford it. Basically - airBnb is your friend. Uber is not, but there are other taxi and car sharing apps you can install. More on this when the time comes.

(and that's just the breakfast)

Now, let's revisit what I've written here over the fortnight, starting with where I was right:

I was right that Lithuania is qualifying. If you placed a qualification bet based on my rehearsal reports, you are welcome.

I was right that Toy has been the winning candidate all along - winning is about peaking in the right moment, not during rehearsal or even a semifinal. Fuego, though masterfully presented and rightfully earned Cyprus' best placing ever, has never convinced me it's a strong enough song.

I was also right that the calorie count of pasteis de nata is about equal to a casual stroll in the extremely hilly Lisbon. My weight is unchanged.

And what did I get very wrong? Plenty of things, most notably Hungary's potential to win the semifinal, only for them to scrape through it. It was my Deli mistake all over again - non-English Rock songs don't have much appeal outside the fan universe, I guess. And I'm going to make the same mistake in the future, so feel free to remind me.

I was wrong about the stage. It looked good when it mattered, when audience is involved. Well done RTP.

I was also wrong about Lithuania, if you've placed a top 10 bet based on my rehearsal reports, then I deeply apologise.

On behalf of me and my ESC Nation colleagues, thank you all for reading, thank you other fansites for the great atmosphere at the press centre, and thank you EBU and RTP for providing these facilities.

Addio, adieu, auf Wiederseh'n, goodbye!

Haiku #13

Music is feeling
Music is not fireworks
Bak bak bak bak bak

Saturday, 12 May 2018

What Sild said

He's always right, so I'll just agree with him I think.

Fiskeprediction Final

The day has come! After a delightful evening at Eurocafé last night, complete with rolling-on-sidewalk-in-gigglefits on our way home, we're feeling a little under the, em, weather today, but soon time to get ready for the big final. An attempt to predict the final result follows below, but be warned, I don't think I've ever been as clueless as this!

1 Cyprus | What the heck... Just a week ago, I thought it'd be lucky to scrape into top 15, and I really am usually not one to get too carried away by improved performances and rehearsals, but here I am, getting carried like there's no tomorrow and considering to grow my hair out.
2 France | Has disappeared a bit in the middle of semi qualifiers, but this should be up there. Jury winner?
3 Israel
4 Hungary | This is just wishful thinking, isn't it?
5 Sweden | Standard Swedish safe result.
6 Ireland | I'm a bit baffled this is 3rd in the betting, but can see it getting pretty good televote support.
7 Germany | Still not at all sold on this, but many others seems to be.
8 Norway
9 Bulgaria
10 Moldova | Refreshing and pure, somehow.
11 Australia | Loving this on the Lisbon dancefloors!
12 Estonia | After upping my expectations of this just before the first semi, I'm now back at thinking it disappears a bit. What's with all the long shots where the dress is just reduced to a lil'dot on the horizon?
13 Czechia | When I watched the recap and this came on, I realised I'd totally forgot it existed. But then they did the bum-wriggle and I giggled and it was back.
14 Lithuania | Not quite getting the massive betting on this, but it should do decently in the end.
15 Italy | Don't really think the staging and graphics work ("Where are they?"), but it's kinda in a niche of its own, so I assume it will get a certain amount of support.
16 Albania | Whereas this really works, with Eugent looking very charming, sweet and engaging throughout. Fear it won't get much but diaspora televotes, but hopefully the juries can help him.
17 Spain | I've had several times this season where I've thought this could really work in the televote, with all the 🧀, but with that draw, I now really doubt it.
18 Austria | One of my absolute favourites this year, but it all disappears a bit, doesn't it? And I wish he had an actual mic!
19 Portugal | Our Airbnb host was not at all keen on this, she said it had 'no emotions, we Portuguese need emotions', and while I personally disagree, I think the general public will be on Airbnb's side, and largely ignore.
20 Ukraine
21 Denmark
22 Serbia | I'm actually more baffled this qualified than Slovenia, but Serbia presumably have a certain amount of automatic points wrapped up, so can't see it going all the way to the bottom.
23 Finland
24 Slovenia | Was it actually the ill-advised and criticised break that did it for her in the end?
25 Netherlands | I refuse to listen to any kinds of arguments about juries voting for quality here. #ByeFelicia
26 United Kingdom | Poor SuRie...

Have a wonderful evening, everyone!

There's still time to practice

Come on, you know you want to.