Use your vote

To the readers of this blog who are eligible to vote in the British General Election, this post is for you! For everyone else apologies, meh, maybe you’ll learn something.

Today is the last day you can register to vote. Register and check eligibility here.

Today is the last chance to make your support, your dissatisfaction and your voice matter. 33.9% of eligible voters failed to vote in the General Election 2015, those votes could have changed the outcome of the election. Don’t ever think that your vote doesn’t count.notthe33

If you are like me, a Brit overseas, and have been out of the UK for under 15 years you are eligible to vote in the General Election. Unfortunately you’ve missed the postal vote deadline, but you can still register and vote by proxy or in person.

Call your council and check that you are registered, even if you voted in the referendum you may need to re-register online to be eligible. Big thanks to the women at Cheshire West and Chester who have dealt with my calls and queries helpfully and quickly.

By Proxy – Someone will vote in your place – The last date you can register for a proxy is Tuesday 30th May. Find out how here.

In Person – Get your arse to your home constituency and vote there – May I suggest a long weekend in GB is in order or just a short hop for the day? Get a cheap deal on Skyscanner (other services are available #notspon) or a lovely chance to use up any air miles you have lying around.

Am I going to tell you who to vote for? no, that is your choice. Am I going to tell you who I’ll be voting for? yes, my constituency is one that could swing away from the Conservatives for the first time in years, and I hope with all my heart that it does. I never thought I’d say that.

Register to vote today #NotThe33

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Eurovision Semis 2017

Know all you need to about Eurovision and understand my slight obsession? Skip past the basics and why I love Eurovision.

eurovision-2017-logo

My favourite finalists

Belgium – Something a little different here, it’s definitely a grower so don’t go and make a cup of tea just yet. I struggled with the mix of her very lovely dress and the stage, it looked like she had changed and decided to wear something fancy at the last minute.

Azerbaijan – Could be an art school project, which I liked. Blackboard and chalk, check. Guy on a step ladder wearing a horse head, check. Was almost anti Eurovision in the costumes, very covered and almost all black but then the singer did vogue so it all evens out in the end.

Moldova – Classic Eurovision, dance moves that everyone can do, unexplained brides with microphones in their bouquets, fake instrumental playing. Still not sure if it was a triple wedding but it is titled Hey, Mamma! so I’m still a little confused.

Norway – Something a little different, which you can afford to do if you are guaranteed the votes of your friendly Scandinavian neighbours. As low key and un-glittery as they come for electro pop at Eurovision.

Belarus -I have a soft spot for songs sung in the countries native language, they just come across more naturally to me. This sweet folk duet sounds a like a Lumineers/ Mumford and sons cross breed, very low tech compared to most of the other offerings.

If you don’t play Eurovision bingo, you should, maybe I can convince you with a free printable, which also makes an excellent drinking game.

Ones to watch for

Romania – Rap and yodelling, no I’m not joking.

Croatia – If you watch with your eyes closed you’d swear that there was more than one soloist on that stage.

Italy – Apparently a hot favourite, no animals were hurt in the performance of this number. Super cheesey but with a deeper meaning possibly about the society, look out for an English translation of the song if you want to investigate further.

Bulgaria – Even with a singer who looks like he should be tucked up in bed by 8pm the staging/lighting of this fairly forgettable number is very slick.

Honourable mentions who didn’t make it to the final –

Slovenia – On paper this song was Eurovision gold, a bit of an old time crooner with a more than a sprinkle of euro glitter.

San Marino – Taking it back to the eighties with this energetic number. Apparently there have been rumblings that they will sit the show out in future since being such a small country leaves them at a disadvantage, not sure if that is down to the voting or finding local talent.

My big two, both automatically qualified as part of the Big 5

UK – Actually up there in the polls this year, which just never happens. Maybe the country will be able to capitalise on European views on the current Brexit disaster and some sympathy points might be ripe for the taking.

Germany – Doesn’t really feel like Germany are trying this year, a bit bland is all I can say about it and I don’t even think amazing staging and costuming can save it.

Both have varied histories in the competition and I doubt either is going to win any year soon.

As usual I’ll be tweeting my way through the evening, and trying nor to fall asleep before the results are in. Follow me @bierandcrumpets for live commentary tomorrow night or look out for a finals post soon.

Eurovision Bingo

No, the obsession has not gone away, but i’m playing catch up this year, I haven’t even checked if there are enough snacks and beer in the house! Why do I love Eurovision?

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, maybe you’ll be enjoying Eurovision for the first time, check out my Eurovision basics, that way the night might make a little more sense. I can’t promise though.

So I thought I’d share my Eurovision Bingo, we usually just have a single handwritten copy which acts as more of a drinking game than bingo, but if you are having a party maybe get some prizes ready?

I made a printable copy this year, feel free to use it too!

Download Eurovision bingo here