Language is the problem for us when it comes to the Eurovision song contest.

Language is the problem for us when it comes to the Eurovision song contest.

Against my better judgment and in the hope that there might just be a tune worth listening to for the first time since Abba’s Waterloo in 1974, I sat through the sorry experience at the weekend.

One thing which stuck me was how many of the countries entered sang their songs in English.

Belgium did it, and Germany, and Russia, and even France…oh no of course, they stuck to form and shunned the chance to join the trend and warble in Anglaise.

I preferred it when the contest only involved what I would call the traditional Europe and each act sang in their own language. No one understood what any of the countries other than their own were going on about and so picking preferences was really a matter of chance.

We used to do pretty well in those days. I put this down to the la la test. You can try it. What goes la la la la (pause) la la la la (pause) la la la la. How about la la la la la (pause) la la la la la. And then there was la la la la la la la (pause) la la la la la la la.

How could you possibly forget these memorable tunes? In those days, they were sung by recognised pop stars and maybe that helped to make them successful.

Now it seems that more people understand English in Eurovision land, we have a problem. They now realise what rubbish our songs really are, which gives them the chance to express their honest opinion of them.

Even before this year’s contest, the UK’s offering was dubbed the worst ever Eurovision entry. It was composed by a man who had his heyday with barely memorable bubblegum music 20 odd years ago and is now better known for his love of steam engines.

And the singer was a virtual unknown. He pranced around singing That Sounds Good To Me, but it did not to most people and he finished last with just 10 points. It was the third time in less than 10 years that the UK had ended up bottom of the pile.

Should we bother any more? I’ll let you know after listening to next year’s effort. Perhaps if it is sung in Croat we may stand a chance of success.

Something else which has not impressed me is the choice of the UK mascots for the London Olympic Games 2012.

Named Wenlock and Mandeville, these one-eyed creatures look like aliens from outer space. Kids may love them but adults are not so keen. A majority of marketing professionals questioned gave them the thumbs down, with more than one in five saying the design was dreadful.

One said they “bring shame on our country” but another described them as “personable and cute”.

Perhaps not surprisingly, a third of designers preferred Wenlock and Mandeville to that odd Olympic logo with which we have been saddled.