Switzerland in the World Cup?

After last night’s round of matches… there is only one round of matches left in the European world cup preliminaries. Some teams have definitely qualified, of which Denmark is one. (Things were a bit crazy in Copenhagen before the match, including Swedish and Danish hooligans crashing on the main street.)

Norway is definitely out.

It is just my luck that Switzerland is in one of the two groups where it is still not clear who will go to South Africa next year. (In the other group Slovakia and Slovenia are battling for the top spot, which is out of reach for the Czech republic.)

As far as my limited football understanding goes: Switzerland is in the World Cup if they a) beat Israel (in which case they will end with 23 points) or b) tie with Israel in the final match. (in which case they will end with 21 points). As it is, they are currently standing with 20 points, and Greece has 17 points

Should they lose to Israel, they will depend on Luxembourg beating Greece, or a tie. If Greece beats Luxembourg, and the Swiss lose to Israel – they will stand even at 20 points. In which case, Greece will finish first, and Switzerland second.  (A whole ‘nother ball game comes into play for second place should Greece lose to Luxembourg. The Swiss would qualify, but the second place might go to Latvia.)

At any rate, the Swiss have secured at least a second place in the group, granting them the play-off chance, if they should not get the first spot and automatic qualification.

Anxiously awaiting Wednesday’s matches.

Norwegian election night…

Election in Norway tomorrow. Unlike the presidential elections in the US, when I stayed up all night to watch the results on the BBC, I will be sleeping in my bed. The reasons for that are many, but the most obvious one at the moment is that I’m no longer a student, who has the next day off… There is actually work on Tuesday.

The other reasons are that I am currently not owning a television set. I gave my old one away when I moved from Denmark, and I haven’t got to the point where I have bought a new one.

I suppose it will be streamed on the net, if I do decide to watch, so not owning a television set is no hindrance in that regard.

But the race looks to be so close anyway, that it probably won’t be decided night to Tuesday anyway.

I will be voting tomorrow. And it won’t be for the same party that I have voted for until now. Which makes the end result a bit more interesting. But I still won’t be watching the tallying of the votes. Unless Norwegian politics somehow becomes more interesting in the next 24 hours…

Football

We’re getting into the last matches of the World Cup Qualifying stretch now. For those of you without a clue as to what I’m talking about, the sport is football or soccer, and the World Cup will take place next year, in South Africa.Tonight is another round of matches.

Some teams have already qualified, the Netherlands being one of them, and some are totally out of the running, Luxembourg being one of them. But other teams still have a chance – and one of those are Switzerland.

Despite being rather unashamedly patriotic and Norwegian, especially when it comes to sport, I cheer for Switzerland at football. (Of course, should Norway and Switzerland meet, I would probably cheer for Norway. Probably.)

I am frequently asked why I do that – most others, when they root for something besides their own national team tend to lean towards the teams that tend to win. England, France, Brazil, Italy, Portugal, and so on.

The thing is, if you’re rooting for someone you’re anticipating to win, in my view, you’ll often end up disappointed. Whereas when I root for the underdog, which Switzerland is most of the time in the football world, any victory is a great triumph – and a tie works well, too.

I started rooting for the Swiss squad during the World cup in Germany. Norway had not qualified, yet again, and if there is one thing I like when watching a championship – it is having someone to cheer for.

My second choice, after Norway, was Denmark, but they had also failed to qualify… And the same with Scotland. Instead I started my pondering.

And I ended up with Switzerland. The only problem with following Switzerland is that the qualifying matches are not airing on television anywhere near me, so I’m missing out on a bit of the fun with it.

But at least I have the good results to rely on. (Defeat to Luxembourg nonewithstanding.) So far, they’re in the lead of group 2, but both Greece and Latvia are breathing down their necks.

I’m looking forward to the final matches. As well as crossing my fingers that things go Switzerland’s way.

Polls

There is now a poll of the month in the sidebar. I will try to keep it interesting – and it will change around the first of every month. The polling is rather unscientific, but then, it is not a referendum on the European Union, or other serious topics… 😉

If you have any idea for poll topics, if there is anything you’d like to know about the internet demographic, please let me know in the comments.

My life with horses

Personally, I am less than accustomed with horses. I’ve been on a pony once, under duress, and aside from that my closest relationship with them has been through My Little Pony, or horses for my Barbies. That being said… I still found the biography about Princess Nathalie zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg and her life with horses an interesting read.

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Profession Princess: Book review

Catarina Hurtig: Profession Prinsesse – translated to Danish.

Let me start out by saying that I wish I could have read the original Swedish version of this book. Unfortunately, the only version I could get my hands on, was the Danish translation.

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The mistresses of Danish Kings – book review

The mistresses are the darker side of the royals – they weren’t perfect, the mistresses are proof that they did not stick to their marriage vows. And as the book by Henning Dehn-Nielsen shows, it also happened in the Danish royal history. Repeatedly.

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Frederik: Kronprins af Danmark

Frederik“Frederik: Kronprins af Danmark” is the newest biography about the Danish royals. Where the unofficial biography about Marie Cavallier came before the wedding – just in time for the Danes to get to know their new princess (and the publisher to make quick money on it, if we’re being cynical about it…) – this latest endeavour was published on the occasion of Crown Prince Frederik’s 40th birthday. It is written by Karin Palshøj og Gitte Redder, the same two journalists who wrote the biography of Crown Princess Mary.

The fact that this is an official biography is shown by the fact that not only is Crown Prince Frederik talking to the authors, his brother, his close friends, his head of security, his former colleagues, and so on, are also doing it – and they’re doing it by name. A few notables are missing – the Queen, the Prince Consort, some royal cousins… but that’s just nitpicking.

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The Jewels of the Danish royal house

Juvelerne i det danske kongehus – Bjarne Steen Jensen, 2001.

According to an interview with Bjarne Steen Jensen in 2006, he has spent years building up his knowledge of the Danish royal jewels, and this most certainly shines through in this quite excellent reference book on the jewels in the Danish royal family.

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