Monday, May 20, 2013

How to Spend Time in One of the World's Highest Income Countries

Depending on whose list you use Norway has the world's 4th, 5th or 6th highest income per capita.
From Reuters Feb. 15, 2013:
Norway plans 12-hour prime-time TV show of a fireplace
Norwegian public television plans to broadcast a burning fireplace for 12 straight hours from Friday evening, with firewood specialists providing color commentary, expert advice and a bit of cultural tutoring.
"We'll talk about the very nerdy subjects like burning, slicing and stacking the wood, but we'll also have cultural segments with music and poems," Rune Moeklebust, a producer for state broadcaster NRK.
"It will be very slow but noble television."

Moeklebust got the idea for the show from the wild success of a firewood book by Lars Mytting, Norway's biggest firewood celebrity. His book "Hel Ved", which means Strong Character in English, is a play on words because ved also means "firewood".

Mytting, a guest on tonight's broadcast, has sold close to 130,000 copies of the book since last year, a huge number in a country of 5 million people, with his publisher claiming that only "Fifty Shades of Grey" sold more copies during the recent holiday season.

NRK is not new to quirky programming.
In 2011, it broadcast 134 hours non-stop of a cruise ship going up the Norwegian coast to the Arctic, bagging the world record for the longest continuous TV program along the way.

At one point 600,000 people tuned in to watch that program with 3.2 million people, or over 60 percent of the population, glued to the screen at one point....MORE
If that isn't vertical enough for you you can always head east to Tango-mad Finland.