Sunday, June 22, 2008

Oranjekoorts - Dutch orange fever

You will get to know this country is linked to the color orange when you land in this country. You will feel it present in some national holidays, such as the Queen's day at the end of April. People dressed up with orange color accessories. However, the fever has been at its highest temperature in recent days - the European football season. You will be amazed, how much this country is fascinated with the orange color, and the way they use to claim their national identity.

It is said that "Oranjekoorts" can occur when the Dutch get excited about any Dutch representative competing in any international sports event when the probability of victory increases. People with "oranjekoorts" suffer from increased body heat and adrenaline due to a sudden outburst of unusual patriotism and national solidarity. Usually there is a bit of "oranjekoorts" leading up to the sports event and it will abate when we (there is always suddenly talk of "we") do badly, but it will increase significantly when we do well. Many Dutch people have "oranjekoorts" right now as a result of the unexpected victory against Italy recently. This is a bit premature of course :-)

"Oranjekoorts" can turn into "oranjegekte": orange madness. This is the word for the behaviour and appearance of Dutch supporters, ranging from decorating your street with orange and national flags, to dressing up as an orange lion. It is expected that 50,000 Dutch fans will populate the city centre of Bern when the Dutch play against the French this Friday: there will be "oranjegekte"!

We started noticing this recently when an apartment building close-by was decorated with lots of orange flags. We were told it is the football season. I wore an orange color fleece sweater yesterday to show my support, in the time of the quarter final between the Netherlands and Russia. Sadly, Dutch team lost. The orange fever will cool down soon. (Picture is from here.)

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