Norway crime novelist talks his way to live interview record

Thu May 23, 2013 1:41pm EDT
 
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OSLO (Reuters) - Defying the stereotype of the tight-lipped Scandinavian, popular Norwegian crime writer Hans Olav Lahlum set the world record for the longest interview on Thursday after spending more than 30 non-stop hours chatting in an online broadcast.

Lahlum, who rarely paused for more than a few seconds, discussed topics ranging from U.S. presidents to his fictional characters during the online show hosted by VG Nett, the online arm of Norwegian tabloid VG.

The new record awaits approval from Guinness World Records.

Fast-talking Lahlum, who is also a left-wing politician, historian and top chess player rarely stumbled during the gabfest, which also covered such scintillating topics as his preferences for mixing puddings and kebabs.

"I think I can safely say that tonight I might go to bed a little earlier than usual," he said as he and interviewer Mads Andersen beat the old record of just over 26 hours.

Shortly after surpassing the previous record, Lahlum plunged into a weighty discussion on world literature in general and Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen in particular.

"Do you have a plan for how you will get Lahlum to stop talking when the interview ends?" one viewer asked VG on its online forum.

The previous record holders - New Zealand's Tim Shadbolt and Tom Conroy, who set the mark in a marathon radio broadcast last year - told VG on Thursday they aim to take the record back.

Norway, a pioneer in slow programming, has spawned several lengthy television hits in recent years, and public broadcaster NRK earlier this year aired a 12-hour show centered on a burning fireplace with experts discussing the intricacies of fire wood.   Continued...