As some of you might have heard, the 17th of May is the national day of Norway, our birthday as a nation so to speak. In Norway, for reasons bound closely to our literary history, this day is really celebrated properly, and tourists from all over the world book hotelrooms in order to catch a glimpse of our royal family waving from the balcony and all. For me, on the other hand, the 16th of May has always been more important; the national day of the youth. Total chaos in the streets, teenagers drinking so much that they figure throwing up is a pass-time, police driving up and down the street trying to decide wether to call it a night or not, becuase it ain’t much they can do.
Me and Kornelius had prepared this evening of intoxication pretty lousy. We hadn’t bought any beer, brandy or cigarettes. Hence; out we went. We met at our usual place at around nine in the evening or so, immediately discovering and disappointed by the fact that our favourite place was closed… Well, the 16th this year fell on a Sunday, so it was no big surprise. What now? What now?
Having walked around for quite some time there, we figured that since the police had already done their "weekend inspection" of Lille Laila by the bridge, it could be suitable for a drink or two. This place is really brown. I mean, really brown. And the beer’s cheap too!:) Entering the place to Britney Spears on the jukebox we settled in nicely in the corner and picked up the first round. Now, unlike most places in Oslo, this place has a few slot machines, and incidently a guy we later knew as ‘Arne’ won like 4000 NOK in quarters and dimes! I always find it bothering, since it could have been me, etc. etc., but this guy was really cool, and he bought us a round of beer as long as we watched his machine and his money in a bag there.
Cool enough! That one round turned to three or four, don’t remember actually, and this guy Arne really didn’t bother us at all. He wanted to play the slot machines, but didn’t mind dropping some change our way every time our glasses were empty.
In addition this poet came over. I mean, I’ve met a few of the type during my short stay here, but this guy, Trond, really crowned the piece! First of all he was trying to hit on a couple of girls sitting next to us. If he’d asked me he would’ve known that they weren’t interested, because I’d already invested a small effort in the matter, but I find it quite un-arousing when all they want to do is talk about their boyfriends. What do I care about their boyfriends? Nada.
Anyway, this Trond fellow, sold us this brochure-looking collection of poetry and politics all mixed up in many, many, many words. After we’d paid he suddenly frozed, looked at us n’ said: "You’re writers?" We confirmed and henceforth received a couple of free editions of his zine, called "3 tonn". He got thrown out a bit later, he was too drunk to stand, walk or sit, but before that we got to hear him read one of his poems…. about 4 pages long!
Ending up at a subway burger-place buying, to my joy, cheeseburgers before sleep was to enter. I think we got cheated at that place, because we ordered the biggest cheeseburger they could put together, but all we got was 160g-sized.. It was more than enough, though:)
The 17th of May went off in sentences of sarcasm offered in random directions, because you really see alot of false morality during our national holiday. Yet, we found joy in shouting HURRA! since nobody else was doing it, and in the sun we ate burgers and fries, fought of Russ and threw pebbles at the riding police officers. All in all it was quite o.k., marking the end of a week on the bottle and the beginning of a week off.
The evening of the 17th was coffe & Renault cognac. *sigh*