289. Super Budget Halloween

What happens when you get a bunch of exchange students with super tight budgets from the business school together for a Halloween party? A whole lot of creativity!

In what was one of the more enterprising Halloween parties I had ever been to, the theme was definitely keeping costs as low as possible. So much so, that the party itself was organised by one particularly enterprising French Canadian, who had us all paying a cover charge and in return supplied well over 1000 beers, as well as food, a model that has been working fairly well throughout the semester and no doubt results in a tidy profit (and deservedly so) with the Danish recycling system!

What I really loved about this party, was that in an effort to spend as little as possible (we’ve all become masters of cost saving, what with being poor students AND backpackers at the same time), most of the costumes were clever gags, rather than the obvious but expensive witch or fairy or disney princess. There were a few from “The Office” including Jim’s ‘Facebook’ and ‘Three Hole Punch’ costumes, though my favourite was probably Hunter S Thompson’s Raoul Duke from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Possibly because working out that costume went something like

“I don’t know what your costume is, but you look like the guy Jonny Depp played in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.”

“YES! No one has guessed it” and then I learned how difficult it is to find bucket hats in Denmark, though cigarette extenders are comparatively common.IMG_8216 (480x640)

Another favourite was the old man, as well as the Christmas Tree, complete with decorations. And of course there was the usual proportion of Halloween Cross Dressers. My costume was well in line with an incredibly low budget, my token costume party item – a silly hat. Sadly, as with all novelty hats at parties, it disappeared off into the crowd, but at a grand expense of $2 I didn’t cry myself to sleep over itIMG_8214 (480x640) IMG_8210 (640x480) IMG_8213 (480x640) IMG_8205 (640x480) IMG_8222 (480x640) IMG_8224 (640x480) IMG_8233 (640x480) IMG_8225 (480x640)IMG_8211 (640x480) IMG_8226 (480x640) IMG_8236 (480x640) IMG_8243 (480x640) IMG_8223 (640x480) IMG_8217 (480x640)

Good to see the old man hadn’t given up, and was still trying it on with Little Bo Peep.IMG_8238 (480x640)

111. Kapsejlads, or how Danish people do Boat Races

In NZ, boat races are a relatively common drinking game (although international media at the moment would probably suggest it is New! and Outrageous!) where two teams race in a form of drinking relay to finish beers, with the second person not allowed to start there’s until the first is finished and so on. There’s usually some novel action that must be done before the next person can start, for example putting the empty bottle upside down on your head. I’m fairly sure students in many countries play it. It’s like a less skilled version of Flip Cup. Here’s an example, which I can only assume are a bunch of middle aged Australians at a gaming convention, so I don’t think this game will be making ODT headlines.

In Denmark, Boat Races are being taken to whole new extremes. Kapsjlads (“Boat Race” in Danish is an annual event at Aarhus University. This year 25,000 people turned up to watch, many of which arrived there six hours before the event officially started to get good spots. Some of my friends actually camped out overnight and most people arrived around 8am and had a little picnic breakfast to kick off the day. Local bars have tents set up selling beers (although everyone brings their own drinks), there’s music playing all day, famous comedians hosting the event, and most importantly it was a glorious sunny day.

The event itself features multiple heats of relay teams of four from each faculty who have to row across the lake in the middle of the University Park, drink a beer as fast as possible, spin around the bottle 10 times and then row back. For a better explanation, here’s a clip of the final:

The best part, however, was the theatrical performances each faculty puts on at the beginning of their heat. I didn’t know this was coming, and thought it was pretty hilarious there were some guys running around in stormtrooper costumes. As it turns out, they reanacted a 2 minute version of the starwars franchise, part on the shore, part on the water, with a giant deathstar raft featuring a lightsaber showdown between Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker. There was smoke and flames and all sorts. Other faculties had hilarious themes like Donald Duck, Aladdin (with a giant elephant and very well choreographed fight scene), some weird dance thing that I didn’t really get, Angry Birds (where a giant catapult was wheeled out and soccer balls were shot at people dressed as pigs on a raft), Titanic (where they even had the painting scene as an easel appeared and Rose somehow transformed in to a naked boy with a wig dancing to “I’m sexy and I know it”). Other surprises of the day involved a naked swim race across the (really filthy) lake to win festival tickets, including one brave girl, and a very enthusiastic strip tease to “Sandstorm.”

All in all a marvellous day, and it was great to see an event like that where the University got behind it (the Mayor even gave a speech), no-one damaged campus and the PC police were no-where to be seen. Otago could learn a few things.