Why Aussies are happier than Norwegians

Why Aussies are happier than Norwegians

When the U.N. ranked Australia behind Norway, it made a serious mistake: Bikinis beat overcoats any day

Edward FlazonThe much-hyped United Nations index is clearly wrong. It listed Australia as the second “happiest” country in the world behind Norway.

It's probably not a bad thing to place second out of 187 and Norway certainly has its charm.

But, with all due respect, the U.N. has made a mistake.

Australia is obviously a happier place than Norway.  There are a number of factors that the U.N. failed to consider.

First and foremost, Norway is chock-full of Norwegians. You can barely walk anywhere in Oslo without running into one.

Conversely, Australia is populated primarily by the immensely more fun Greeks, who invented democracy, Western philosophy and homosexuality. As well as lively Brits, who invented the laws of Motion, Natural Selection and Warm Beer.

We also have our own continent, which cannot be overrated. The apparently happy Norwegians have to share with neighbors that used to invade countries in hard cow-hats. Surely that’s scary and would infringe on happiness.

And our continent has four real seasons throughout the year: it gets hot in summer, chilly in winter; autumn is red, spring is green. It is the way of things.

But being so far north, Norway has just two seasons: "cold" and "flu." Each lasts six months. In some parts of the country, it gets so cold that the sun doesn't even get out of bed for two months out of the year.

Australia has more beaches, usable day and night, all year round. To avoid hypothermia, Norway's beaches can only be safely used for two hours after lunch on June 21.

And the effects of the cold on visitors to their “naturist” beaches can make visiting them a disturbing exercise.

More on CNNGo: Best beaches in Sydney

Australia’s hotter

A recent study on human hotness (though I can't, for the life of me, find a link at this moment) revealed that Australian chicks are also objectively hotter than their Norwegian counterparts. Other countries were not included in the study.

But even if one is blind to both Aussie hotness and the objectivity of an illegitimate study, the point becomes moot when one considers the typical dress code of the countries.

Our girls walk about in bikinis most of the year, further increasing hotness by 47 percent. And some will wear the tops only when it gets a bit nippy.

The same is true with the Aussie gents, sans the bikini tops.

In Norway, however, a gray, shapeless, heavy overcoat is worn throughout autumn, winter and spring. During summer, they change into a brightly colored, shapeless, heavy overcoat.

But a wise man once told me, “Happiness is within, so although we look at bikinis instead of overcoats, we also have to smile more.”

I couldn't agree more, and I think I have it covered: girls in bikinis do, in fact, make me smile more. Guys in bikinis, not so much, but they'll make others happy.

It’s not all about guys in bikinis

Granted, Norway does give out something called a Nobel Peace Prize.

But we have beer-drinking competitions, which are more-or-less the same. In one, you talk to people to stop them from fighting, and in the other, you get them so drunk they're unable to fight.

This drinking game is opposed to the Norwegian variety, which involves drinking strong spirits after banging them on a table. After many repetitions, they are unable to talk.

So this glaring mistake should now be clear to everybody. Would someone please forward this article to a U.N. official?

And in the spirit of diplomacy, I'd like to invite the people of Norway to move their country into Western Australia. It would fit six times over, and we're really only using that space to store extra sand, in case of beach erosion along our pristine coast.

Maybe then they’d be even happier?

Because in the end, regardless of how happy a country claims to be, it’s always going to be 10 times easier being happy on a beach than on a glacier.

So unless they’re 10 times as good at being happy, the U.N. has erred.

More on CNNGo: 50 reasons why Sydney is the world's greatest city and 50 reasons Melbourne's the world's most livable city

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Edward Falzon.

Edward Falzon is a Shanghai-based author, religious scholar and anti-theist.

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