My usual disclaimer that I have been very busy now has a new variable: I have been glued to the Olympics.
My home town, where I grew up and where I consider my heart will always remain finally got to host The Olympics in my lifetime and I’ve only gone and moved bloody countries. FFS. Furthermore, we applied for lots of tickets and didn’t get a sniff (and we applied for some right random events). We’re only a few days in but here are my observations so far:
Opening ceremony I worried and worried about this (as you can read here) and my expectations were balanced with admission that we didn’t have a lot of money left to splash on it (and we’d have to make it out of old cereal boxes and double-sided sticky tape) and that Danny Boyle – a gifted film maker IMHO – was going to oversee the production. In the end I thought it was original, witty, occasionally funny and sometimes breathtaking. The coming together of the rings in the opening sequence was awesome, I thought. The only things that let it down were the references to Eastenders (really? are we that culturally bankrupt that we have to refer to a fucking soap opera?) and Paul McCartney at the end. I know he’s a legend but if we’re just going to organise a sing-a-long we could have got Chaz’n'Dave for a fraction of the price.
Women’s Football I think the women’s game is a growing sport and will, in the next few years, grow at an incredible rate. The players are getting faster, more technical and dramatically fitter and the game is starting to reflect that. So, why oh why are they stuck out in Wales? If this is the LONDON olympics then why are they shoved off into another city? London has a whole raft of stadiums – big and small – which could be ‘Lymped up no problem (in the pink livery that I think is awesome). Also, they started before the olympics actually started which meant that they missed the opening ceremony and they also don’t get the buzz from the Olympic village and when team GB wins a medal. I dunno, makes me pretty angry. Football generally doesn’t feel part of this olympics…
Archery I have decided that archery is proper fly. The combination of absolute concentration, strength and calm under the highest pressure is just brilliant television. There was one guy who admitted that in practice an hour or so before the final he scored 23 out of 24 bullseyes and the other was a 9 (the ring outside the bullseye) but with the pressure of competition, a packed stand with a few thousand people in it and the rest of the world watching on telly he managed to only (ha!) score around 10 bullseyes. After the hoohah of the ‘lympics has died down I’m gonna get medieval and take up archery and get Robin Hood on everyone. Rio 2016 here I come!!!
Basketball Over here we don’t have the luxury of the ‘red button’ to see all the various feeds the BBC has…so I have been able to only catch a few basketball games but I have been entranced by the USA team. They’re not the tallest team in the world and they seem to take an entire quarter to warm up but once they do they are simply majestic. It’s the speed that they traverse the court and the ruthlessness they punish the teeniest defensive errors that shows how far they are ahead of the rest of the world. James and Bryant are obvious poster boys, but as a team they are just superlative.
Volleyball I’d not really watched volleyball before but I have watched a fair bit now and I love it – it’s like tennis with shitloads of people and floor-shine ninjas who polish the court whenever they get a chance.