You may well have your head in your hands, young man. Proudly bilingual Nathan Trent will be trying to wring out some excitement from "Running on Air" in 2017. You may need some air here
The Alpine Teutons have gone French with the buxom ZOE (in capitals for some reason) with "Loin d'ici", a deeply twee effort, all pastel pinks and no taste. It's here
The Makemakes have the unenviable task of not living down to the Austrian camp exploits from last year with "I Am Yours". It will fail but for once Austria have something inoffensive. Learn more here
Cock in a frock makes a never welcome return to the fold in 2014 in the tightly packed shape of Conchita Wurst (I'm not kidding) with "Rise like a phoenix". Admire the beard-line here
Natalia Kelly will be vainly attempting to "Shine" in 2013. In terms of Austria it's not that bad. In terms of the overall contest it's average. Learn more here


An angry Austrian lumberjack used his chainsaw to reduce his boss's furniture to matchsticks. After the fight at work, the 37-year-old drove to his boss's flat in the town of St. Johann. After cutting a rectangle into the door with his chainsaw to get in, he then destroyed a table, armchair, corner seat, the complete kitchen furniture and the wardrobe. Neighbours who heard the noise of the chainsaw called the police. When they arrived, they found the man sitting peacefully amongst the remains of his boss's furniture.

A chestnut seller who tried to drum up trade by ringing police and sparking a bomb alert to get people out on the streets has been jailed in Austria.
Wolfgang Ziegler, 39, claimed a bomb had been hidden in a Vienna shopping centre, causing the evacuation of 66 shops, several restaurants and a doctors' surgery. But after no bomb was found police traced the call to his mobile and he was arrested. He was jailed for six months by a regional court in Vienna after admitting making a hoax call because he was "really bored". 23/10/03

Residents of an Austrian village called Fucking, have voted against changing the name.

The 150 or so people who live in the village debated the issue after roadsigns kept being stolen - many by British tourists.
Spokesman Siegfried Hoeppl, said: "Everyone here knows what it means in English, but for us Fucking is Fucking - and it's going to stay Fucking - even though the signs keep getting stolen."
He said the name came from Mr Fuck and his family who settled in the area 100 years ago, and added "ing", meaning village or settlement.
The villagers didn't find out about the English meaning of the word until Allied soldiers stationed in the region in 1945 pointed out the alternative meaning.
There had been an increase in the number of signs being stolen, and said British tourists were usually blamed......

Dozens of women have asked to be made pregnant by a prehistoric iceman who died 5,000 years ago. The body of "Otzi the Iceman" was discovered by hikers in 1991 as ice melted in the Schnalstal glacier, high in the Italian Alps. Alex Susanna, director of the Bozen Museum where his body is exhibited, says requests have been received by many women wanting to have Otzi's babies. All of the requests had been turned down, not least because Otzi's penis had decayed away. 20/04/03

A 91-year-old Austrian man has been called up for National Service. The pensioner, from Bad Ischl, was told he had to show up at the Wals army barracks to start his eight month military service. But the man, who served in Hitler's Wehrmacht during World War II, said: "I refuse to join the army again as I have already partaken once." Army spokesman Colonel Alexander Barthou said the letter had been supposed to go to an 18-year-old, also from Bad Ischl, with the same name. He said: "We have already assured the pensioner that he certainly will not be drafted."

An Austrian man cut off his toes, fried them up and ate them between two slices of bread after getting high sniffing butane gas. When ambulance men arrived he offered to share his meal with them, passing over a toe and saying: "It tastes like chicken, do you want some, there's a few still left over."
Police said the 35-year-old from near Vienna suddenly became very hungry after sniffing the gas and had searched all his kitchen cupboards, but found nothing to eat. The man's sister called the police when she walked into the kitchen and saw him making the toe sandwich. A police spokesman added: "He told the ambulance men that he had more toes than he needed and didn't think he would notice if he got rid of a few." 

An Austrian couple with 12 children have split up - after the husband admitted he was gay. Mum Alina Look dumped husband Hannes after his shock revelation. Hannes had announced that he was leaving the family home at Graz for another man. Hannes told Alina he only made her pregnant so she had "something to do". Alina said: "I received a phone call from a friend who told me she had seen Hannes with another person, she said they had been kissing and cuddling. "I didn't believe her when she told me the other person was a man, but when I confronted Hannes he admitted everything. "He told me he had only had sex with me so I would get pregnant and it would give me something to do. I can't believe we had so many children together, my whole life has been a lie."

.........The sign is the most often stolen one in Austria. Most of Fucking's budget is spent on replacing the stolen signs. 
"I do not agree it is just the British. Fucking is universal. Germans use it as much now as the British, and it also means the same to the Americans, Australians and anyone in the English speaking world," the mayor has said.
Similar votes on a name change have taken place recently in neighbouring Austrian towns Wank am see and Petting, as well as in Vomitville and Windpassing.

The Austrian town of F***ing has erected theft-proof road signs embedded in concrete blocks. Officials acted because they were fed up with English-speaking tourists stealing them as souvenirs.The signs are bolted and welded to steel posts embedded in concrete in the ground and the mayor added: "It would take all night to steal one. The Mayor of Fucking has also been on record saying he hopes that further thefts will be avoided through the use of bigger screws. Boom boom.

1918 End of Hapsburg empire. 1920 New constitution creates Republic of Austria. 1934 Government crushes Socialist uprising. All political parties abolished except the Fatherland Front. 1934 Imprisonment of Nazi conspirators leads to attempted Nazi coup. 1936 Austria acknowledges itself "a German state". 1938 The Anschluss (union): Austria now called the Ostmark (Eastern March). 1945 Soviet troops liberate Vienna. Austria occupied by Soviet, British, US and French forces. 1946-47 Denazification laws passed. 1949 Former Nazis allowed to participate in general election. 1955 Treaty signed by UK, France, USA and USSR establishes an independent but neutral. Austria joins United Nations. 1986 Ex-UN Secretary-General Kurt Waldheim elected president, despite controversy over role in World War II. 1995 Austria joins EU. 1999 Far right Freedom Party wins 27% of vote in national elections. 2000 International outcry as Freedom Party enters government. 2001 Deal signed on compensating Jews whose assets were seized by Nazis. $360m paid into settlement fund. 2003 Pension reform plans spark first nationwide strike action in several decades. 2005 Parliament ratifies EU constitution.

The Tourist Guide might say
"Our country's outstanding natural beauty provides the ideal backdrop for loads of activities on the slopes, but also off the slopes and in the cities. And if you’re looking for relaxation and recreation for body and mind, then Austria’s top notch health & wellbeing facilities are exactly what you need." So there.

The Capital
Vienna has reputedly been a centre of music for a while now. Big wigged artists such as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Joseph Haydn, Ludwig van Beethoven, Franz Schubert, Johannes Brahms, and Anton Bruckner worked in Vienna, and a chap called Vivaldi died there. A geezer called Johann Strauss II and his family created their “waltz” music there, whatever that may be.

Final Thought
In the news Arnold Schwarzenegger once readily acknowledged the pleasure he took in "a little patting on the ass" with attractive women. "It's like I always told you," he explained. "He who hesitates... masturbates."
And this is the man who may, one day, get his finger on the big red nuclear button.

Falco (80's popster)
Hedy Lamarr
(40's sextress)
Simon Wiesenthal
(50's hunter)
Arnold Schwarzenegger
(a reactionary in his 60's)


Internet Use

1039.5 per 10000 people
Airports 55
Radios 753 radios per 1000 people
Life expectancy 74.85 men 81.31 women
Railway Network 3843 miles of railway network
Death penalty abolished in 1968