04 August 2012

crazy olympics report london 2012

I find it difficult to imagine Apollo squeezing into his Speedos for a few sets of beach volleyball; Hermes mounting his stallion for some ‘horsey-dancing’or Poseidon and Heracles adjusting their noseclips as they prepare to start their synchronised swimming routine...

The first Olympic Games for the Twitter and Facebook generation has produced some crazy stuff. Clues that this was a ‘modern’ Games came at the Opening Ceremony; teenage Olympians marching in the entry parade, their iPhones held aloft capturing video instead of/as well as soaking up the atmosphere of a lifetime.

I thought the Opening Ceremony, despite media criticisms, presented Great Britain to the world in a strong light. Above the spectacular Olympic Stadium remotely controlled cameras scuttled like big black beetles on a network of high wires to beam pictures of the visual feast from every conceivable angle. TV viewers had sumptuous views from inside, outside and above the stadium without having to stump up an eye-watering £2,100 pounds for the most expensive tickets in the house.

I’m watching the spectacle from Canada. There’s a bias in the TV coverage towards events favoured in Canada and The States and commercials appear every few minutes. I hear regular references to landmarks such as Bucking-HAM Palace. Those irritations aside, at least I have five Olympic TV channels, including three in hi-definition, plus plenty of unofficial streaming online so I have most events covered. Reports tell me the Brits are infuriated with some crass home commentary and insensitive interviewing. Another sign of the times is the stinking army of British Trolls unleashing verbal campaigns against British athletes on Twitter and in online comments threads everywhere. It seems Silver is regarded as abject failure. The prospect of a Canadian disrespecting a Canadian athlete seems unthinkable.

Call me an old traditionalist but Track and Field are where the true spirit of the Olympics lies. I’ll be watching the athletics with keen interest from this weekend onwards.

The Mad
  • Gymnasts using little water pistols to spray the Uneven Bars (By the way, when did we stop calling them the Asymmetric Bars?)
  • The trampolinists whistling shrilly with each breath. (Is it just me or did her hips look a bit soggy?)
  • Swimmers wearing TWO caps, one on top of the other. (Never venture out without your undercap!)
The Bad
  • Badminton players expelled for trying to lose.
  • Athletes naively posting scans of their Olympic security passes online.
  • Olympic officials who allegedly charged a barely credible £19,000 to expenses for a single bottle of 1853 vintage Cognac.
The Sad
  • The civilian cyclist tragically crushed under an Olympic shuttle bus on Thursday.
I can’t help but wonder what that mythical god and resident of Mount Olympus, Zeus would make of twenty-first century shenanigans: Olympians stabbing away at smart phones or wearing giant headphones as they saunter into the arena. Everywhere style vies with substance for supremacy and you can be forgiven for thinking competitors are awarded marks for fingernail flag painting, naval jewellery, sparkliest shoes and wackiest cycling helmet. Despite all the silly trappings of modernity, athletic cream will rise to the surface and I’m sure there will be some truly momentous performances.


Russell 'C.J.' Duffy said...

Cronus was against the Olympic games but look what happened to him!!

Perfect Virgo said...

... and with a sickle!