Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Inflation in Helium prices

The geothermal beach at Nautholsvík where the sea is heated up for bathers
The sun has finally made an appearance and we are told by the media that Iceland is now besieged by visiting celebrities. Well by our standards anyway. In total over the past month a whopping nine famous people have been here. Probably not all that spectacular in other places of the world. Especially if you take into account that one of these famous people is a news anchor. Oh well.

People line up for ice cream down at the harbour

When the sun shines we Icelanders usually consume a lot of ice cream. It is actually a year round thing but peaks when it is warm and sunny. So much so this weekend that ice cream was sold out in certain parts of the country. Also helium. But that particular shortage is a global thing. It is not a result of too many celebrations or over the top balloon releasing at opening ceremonies. Apparently MRI machines use a lot of helium and they are to blame, aided by use in laboratories. There will be no helium available to party throwers or happy kids until late August according to the local distributer. And no, he did not say it in a squeaky voice which was an opportunity lost.

One of the celebs that has made a number of visits this summer is Ryan Gosling. Sightings are reported here and there, one involving an accident on of the main roads in Reykjavík. According to the source, a passerby, he seemed very courteous and did not try a hit and run despite being best known for a movie named “Drive”. He was also praised for driving a very modest car. I should note that celebrity sightings in Iceland seldom involve a photo. We have no paparazzi here.
Anyway, turns out the man involved in the accident was not Ryan Gosling at all. It was someone that supposedly looks a lot like him. This guy was obviously interviewed, this being no-news Iceland and he mentioned that he had received numerous comments prior to the accident thing about him looking like Gosling.

Two of the Icelandic Ryan Gosling lookalikes - note that the real deal is the one in the middle 
Next thing you know you can’t open a paper without an interview with someone Icelandic who also supposedly looks a lot like Gosling. It was almost a week of Gosling doppelganger news. The look-a-likes could have started their own union. But before it came to that the stories ended up hitting the world media. And they did not see the likeness in the same way that Iceland did. What they said was “somebody please get these guys a mirror” and “Icelandic men think very highly of themselves” and “What is in the drinking water over there?”

So we were shamed which is all OK and fine. A little shaming every now and again is good for inflated egos. Uninflated we will match the party balloons we can no longer fill with helium.


Yrsa - Wednesday


  1. Forget Capistrano and the swallows, the place to be is Iceland for the flocking of the goslings.

  2. You are too funny Jeff - thanks for making me smile

  3. I think people are making a fuss over nothing. Hydrogen works fine for balloons. And you can make it with a battery and some water. They even used it in airships once.

    But no smoking while making it, please, Yrsa!

  4. Yrsa, but don't let the children play with the hydrogen balloons. Remember the Hidenberg?