Last week there was an event that passed North Americans without a peep. This event however was epic to European countries. It is called EUROVISION
Eurovision is an annual song contest open to members of the European Broadcast Union. The event is often viewed in a party setting (much like the superbowl). A number of people in Iceland have said to me "You are going to watch Eurovision, right? You must it's a tradition here." Nearly all follow up that with "but you know we think it's cheesy? It's just fun".
So we went to the new massive music center HARPA and watched Eurovision with over a hundred Icelanders. The costumes were glitzy and the songs were pop but somehow I still felt the need to articulate my opinion on each performance. Why should I care? I don't know... but I did. During the tally I was scoffing and clapping right along with everyone else.
The contestants for Iceland had a compelling story that made me really hope that they would win. The man who wrote the song died right after submitting it to Eurovision. His friends then got together to perform it. Although there wasn't a big light show, fancy graphics, or women on unicycles it was sweet and I wanted them to feel validated in lue of their friends absence.
Azerbaijan won. It was a jarring surprise seeing that this was the first time I had even heard of this country. It's surrounded by Iran, Georgia, Armenia, and Russia and has a population of 8,781,100, this is what Google told me.
The tradition of Eurovision is that the country that wins, hosts the event the following year. So next year I bet thousands will be following suit and asking "Dear Mr. Google what/where is Azerbaijan?"