New World Championship gold, but cheers for Norway!

It is curious how to fight for certain things while others just fall down in to place by themselves. A couple of weekends ago, I was in Karlskrona to salvage my little proof that I am Sweden's fastest 50 year old in which I and a blind starter managed to fritter it away even though I was meticulous in my preparation and Mattias Sunneborn (famous Swdish longjumper) had the best coach you can imagine. I was really sad to go home with a bronze medal and it still hurts. The guy that is always best when it counts 'chickened' out when it came to sports again just as in my youth.

This weekend I was in Paris to promote my epic book "A scent of champagne" and to get as many countries as possible on the train for teh launch this autumn. Since I knew that I was close to a new award in 'the international cookbook-family' for my three World Championship gold for the previous books, I realized that I would get some help from the old record. My internationall sales agent
Ulla and publisher Alexandra and I showered at the right pace on the rather quiet but insanely luxurious grand exhibition in the middle of the Louvre. I othewise hate fairs and all the fake smiles and types that are 'prostituting' themselves to each other in one quick flushed spasmodic farce. This time it was different. We even had a little free time and I left the favorite breakfast notch where I took Ragni on our second date, Fouquet on the Champs-Elysées, in my loneliness this time to taste  Paris and wandered down along the mighty avenue to fill bags with PSG clothes for kids. In the evening it was time for the annual awards ceremony in the unofficial Cookbook World Cup, Gourmand Cookbook Awards. A grand, but very tough and lengthy history in four hours for those who are not self-nominated. Now I have already won undeservedly much in this amazing contest so I had no problem sitting down with 1200 people from 50 countries and enjoy their happiness on stage without any nervousness. However, I made sure in advance for a solo dinner together with a 650 gram steak from Aubrac and a steady dose of quality wine that got the staff to go
in to spin. No, of course I could not help but ordering in the heroic 2002
Jacquesson 'Vauzelle Terme'.

I had promised my friend Steffo Törnquist to support him in anticipation of his first World Championship gold with a fairly large Swedish delegation on location in the Louvre. The Spaniards waved flags as soon as a countryman entered the stage, Chinese screamed and the Yanks cried out loud. We contented ourselves to rejoice greatly. But just before a noticeably nervous Steffo would get his well-deserved award for "Spirits Bible," he says to me. "But look here, Richard you are nominated in the" Best presenter of the TV show. "Because I look like a hawk in the distance, I refused to realize that I have to us my with glasses and to read the fine printed program in front of me. Two minutes later they called me, surprised, up on stage and to get out of the hands of the wonderful Edouard Cointreau the price as the best TV dude! Little extra fun that Steffo was sitting safely as an anchor in the Swedish tv-sofa where I will only sporadically are a guest, as we know.

What's going on between Sweden and Norway? Are we so different that you can do worldwide success in one country and not even be part of the other? Is it lusekoftorna (traditional norwegian sweaters) and cute but a little cheesy language which make Swedes to beat their big brother chest in superiority? Yesterday I ended up reluctantly watching Melodifestivalen (swedish selectionfor Eurovision Grand Prix) and saw a good contributions and a good artist, a gorgeous (almost as beautiful as my wife!) and well-singing Norwegian in the middle of the  mediocre Swedish slimy mess. Of course, she was voted out early! In the Ski World Cup we are cheering for our silvermedals but complain that the Norwegians have so much snow that it is not surprising that we get beaten at all distances by them. They have nothing more than to do in that country than to ski... They don't even have to work because of all the oil, which of course is a gift. No, they are just lucky, or can it be that thay are cheating?  Why so jealous? They are simply better at the most right now. Watch and learn instead! 

Lidingö March 2
RJ

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