Let's talk about the Olympics

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Alex Frakt
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Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Alex Frakt » Sat Jul 28, 2012 9:12 am

Let's talk about the Olympics. Sporting events are normally off topic, but the Olympics are something that (ideally) transcends sport and captures the imagination of the general populace. So as an experiment, we'll consider this a community event and try out a thread here in the Bogleheads Community forum.

Let's have one ground rule (beyond the normal forum policies). NO SPOILERS. Even though everything is being streamed live, most of us in the US won't see the results of the major sports until NBC's evening broadcast, which is delayed by several hours. And I imagine plenty of us are also DVRing some of the live coverage so we can watch it at night. So please hold off on discussions of results until the day after an event (or at least until a couple of hours after the end of NBC broadcast in the Pacific time zone).

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Alex Frakt » Sat Jul 28, 2012 9:23 am

I'll start it off. What did you think of the opening ceremony? I kind of enjoyed the British history and culture trivia contest aspect of the thing, especially the long shout out for Isambard Kingdom Brunel (played by Kenneth Branagh).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isambard_Kingdom_Brunel
Isambard Kingdom Brunel, FRS (/ˈɪzəmbɑrd bruːˈnɛl/; 9 April 1806 – 15 September 1859), was an English mechanical and civil engineer who built bridges and dockyards, the Great Western Railway, a series of steamships including the first propeller-driven transatlantic steamship and numerous important bridges and tunnels. His designs revolutionised public transport and modern engineering.

Though Brunel's projects were not always successful, they often contained innovative solutions to long-standing engineering problems. During his short career, Brunel achieved many engineering "firsts", including assisting in the building of the first tunnel under a navigable river and development of SS Great Britain, the first propeller-driven ocean-going iron ship, which was at the time (1843) also the largest ship ever built.

Brunel set the standard for a very well built railway, using careful surveys to minimise grades and curves...

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by chaz » Sat Jul 28, 2012 9:57 am

I was amused by seeing all the athletes marching in the opening ceremony using digital cameras to photograph the audience.
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by mhc » Sat Jul 28, 2012 10:04 am

I always enjoy the parade of athletes. To me, that is the Olympics. I also enjoyed Mr. Bean and James Bond with the Queen.

I thought the performances in the opening ceremony were odd. I have a call with an employee on Monday. He lives in Scotland. I'm interested to hear what he thought of the opening ceremonies.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by SteveB3005 » Sat Jul 28, 2012 10:11 am

The USA Mens Basketball team were like high schoolers at state finals first time, giddy happy with cameras. These are the likes of LeBron and Kobe, Chris Paul, cream of the crop pros and gazillionaires just goofey with excitement. Did my heart good.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by daytona084 » Sat Jul 28, 2012 11:59 am

Opening Ceremony:

Pro: Loved the "Mr Bean" skit. Laughed out loud.
Con: What does the song "Hey Jude" have to do with anything Olympic-related?

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by runner9 » Sat Jul 28, 2012 12:44 pm

I was didn't watch much, maybe it was covered, but read this morning that most soccer teams weren't there because of matches today. The US women were in Scotland, some 400 miles away.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by mickeyd » Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:04 pm

Could not afford to waste my time on the opening stroll-in. Watched baseball and the DVR of Breaking Bad from Sunday. DW watched it on another TV, she said that she saw 15 min. or so and it was pretty good.

I must admit that even tho I am a big sports fan that I do not usually enjoy the Olympics because of all of the political issues that are afloat. (Romney's horse, non-tribute to Munich Olympics killings etc). All of that stuff kills it for me. I will be watching MLB for the next 2 weeks.
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by HardKnocker » Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:08 pm

I've lost any interest in this bi-annual celebration of obscure "sports" performed by athletes using all manner of performance enhancers.

The political jingoism in these silly events is also distasteful.

A utter waste of resources by a country (UK) which can't afford it.
Last edited by HardKnocker on Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Rajsx » Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:08 pm

I did not much care for the opening ceremony this time when compared to in the past. I was waiting for the WOW, did not see any.
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by wbond » Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:13 pm

The Olympics is a great event, and one at which we are all Americans.

However, since - alas- there is to be no college football thread this year, I'd like to take this opportunity to present some compelling Olympic trivia:

U.S. Olympic history medal count:

Stanford: Total 223, Gold 115, Silver 62, Bronze 46

Cal: Total 159, Gold 91, Silver 40, Bronze 28

Who will prevail in 2012?

Beat Cal, Wbond

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Puakinekine » Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:24 pm

The opening ceremony was a bit of a muddle, which was maybe the point, as more then anything the English seem to love muddles. It was quite a refreshing contrast to the admirable but frightening precision of Beijing. I enjoyed parts of it, but did not understand the amount of time devoted the the British pop music section and the endless dancing, which was only slightly redeemed by the inclusion of Bohemian Rhapsody/Freddy Mercury. NBC must have chopped off quite a bit as I have been seeing photos this morning of seemingly wonderful things that I missed entirely. I did finally cave on the "I"'s during the parade of nations, but a lot of the wonders happened previous to that.

Speaking of NBC...I do wish there was someway of watching the Olympics without the editing and commentary. I gave up on the sporting events in 2008, as the one event that I was really interested in (pole vaulting) was given about 30 seconds of air time, after I sat and sat through endless repetitive commercials and running events that all became much of a muchness.

Don't they know that it was Harry Potter who did in Lord Voldemort, not Mary Poppins??? The rings were fab, though. :D

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by chaz » Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:26 pm

wbond wrote:The Olympics is a great event, and one at which we are all Americans.

However, since - alas- there is to be no college football thread this year, I'd like to take this opportunity to present some compelling Olympic trivia:

U.S. Olympic history medal count:

Stanford: Total 223, Gold 115, Silver 62, Bronze 46

Cal: Total 159, Gold 91, Silver 40, Bronze 28

Who will prevail in 2012?

Beat Cal, Wbond
What about USC and UCLA?
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by wbond » Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:39 pm

chaz wrote:
wbond wrote:The Olympics is a great event, and one at which we are all Americans.

However, since - alas- there is to be no college football thread this year, I'd like to take this opportunity to present some compelling Olympic trivia:

U.S. Olympic history medal count:

Stanford: Total 223, Gold 115, Silver 62, Bronze 46

Cal: Total 159, Gold 91, Silver 40, Bronze 28

Who will prevail in 2012?

Beat Cal, Wbond
What about USC and UCLA?
To give the devil his due:

USC: Total 262, gold 123, Silver 78, Bronze 61

UCLA: Total 241, Gold 119, Silver 63, Bronze 59

Beat Cal.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by wbond » Sat Jul 28, 2012 1:51 pm

By the way, to put this in context and to underscore the contribution of athletes from USC, UCLA, Stanford, and even Cal to the U.S. Olympic teams through the years, I will compare to another large university with a well-rounded and successful athletic department.

University of Texas: Total 117, Gold 67, Silver 32, Bronze 18.

The source for all of these numbers is the University's own athletic dept. site.

Beat Cal, Wbond

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Alex Frakt » Sat Jul 28, 2012 2:08 pm

Puakinekine wrote:Speaking of NBC...I do wish there was someway of watching the Olympics without the editing and commentary. I gave up on the sporting events in 2008, as the one event that I was really interested in (pole vaulting) was given about 30 seconds of air time, after I sat and sat through endless repetitive commercials and running events that all became much of a muchness.
Thanks to competition from Fox and ABC the last time broadcast rights were put up for bid, NBC has been forced to live stream every event on http://www.nbcolympics.com . So if you have the time and a fast internet connection, you can see entire events uncut And if its something that NBC does not consider to be a marquee sport, you won't even have to put up with their commentary.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Puakinekine » Sat Jul 28, 2012 2:15 pm

Alex Frakt wrote:
Puakinekine wrote:Speaking of NBC...I do wish there was someway of watching the Olympics without the editing and commentary. I gave up on the sporting events in 2008, as the one event that I was really interested in (pole vaulting) was given about 30 seconds of air time, after I sat and sat through endless repetitive commercials and running events that all became much of a muchness.
Thanks to competition from Fox and ABC the last time broadcast rights were put up for bid, NBC has been forced to live stream every event on http://www.nbcolympics.com . So if you have the time and a fast internet connection, you can see entire events uncut And if its something that NBC does not consider to be a marquee sport, you won't even have to put up with their commentary.
Thank you Alex.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by jebmke » Sat Jul 28, 2012 2:21 pm

It is really hard to tell what is really live and what isn't. Some things labeled "live" are clearly replays since the winners are already announced in the news.
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by nolabogle » Sat Jul 28, 2012 2:55 pm

Too many events, i.e. 1) Men's trampoline 2) Women's group all around rhythmic gymnastics 3) Men's double canoe 1000M, not to be mistaken with men's single canoe 1000M, not to be mistaken with men's single canoe 200M 4) Handball 5) Womens Judo 48kg, 52kg, 57kg, 63kg, 70kg, 78kg, 78kg plus, not to be mistaken with women's taekwondo and its various weight classes 6) Men's race walking 20kn, 50km. Is it racing or is it walking? Combining the 2 just doesn't make sense to me.

No thanks. I would rather watch Petrocelli's demolition yacht derby. http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtop ... 11&t=98107

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by runner9 » Sat Jul 28, 2012 2:56 pm

Alex Frakt wrote:
Puakinekine wrote:Speaking of NBC...I do wish there was someway of watching the Olympics without the editing and commentary. I gave up on the sporting events in 2008, as the one event that I was really interested in (pole vaulting) was given about 30 seconds of air time, after I sat and sat through endless repetitive commercials and running events that all became much of a muchness.
Thanks to competition from Fox and ABC the last time broadcast rights were put up for bid, NBC has been forced to live stream every event on http://www.nbcolympics.com . So if you have the time and a fast internet connection, you can see entire events uncut And if its something that NBC does not consider to be a marquee sport, you won't even have to put up with their commentary.
But only if you subscribe at home to something with CNBC and MSNBC. :(

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Phineas J. Whoopee » Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:08 pm

Alex Frakt wrote:I'll start it off. What did you think of the opening ceremony?
As usual I tried to watch but had to turn it off after a few minutes. Performing artists were performing art but those hosts thought it was their job to talk.

Would they do that in a theatre at a play?

I will never understand why NBC doesn't instruct its commentators to stop commentating while art is happening.

If there is an online source where I can access just the ceremony itself I will be grateful if someone points me to it.

PJW

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by snyder66 » Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:25 pm

I really think the tape delay will make the Olympics an afterthought.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by RadAudit » Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:26 pm

As for opening ceremonies - how are you going to top the Chinese?

On the other hand, the English gave a good go at it with James Bond and the Queen jumping in to the opening ceremonies, and Mr. Bean.
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Mudpuppy » Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:32 pm

Alex Frakt wrote:I'll start it off. What did you think of the opening ceremony?
Overall, I was a bit underwhelmed. I thought the dancing bankers in the industrial era were just downright odd. The children's scene was decent, particularly given those were medical professionals, not professional dancers. Like chaz, I found it amusing how many athletes came in with the cell phones held out during the Parade of Nations (although after a few nations I picked up a book and read that for most of the rest of the parade). And the organizers surely made a different choice for both lighting the Olympic cauldron and its location during the games.

I really wish NBC had stuck to wide vistas during the fireworks show. I could tell by the booms in the background that there was some really impressive fireworks going on, but they kept panning to the crowd to get the crowd reaction instead of letting the TV audience watch the actual display. Some of the camera-work on other parts of the ceremony were likewise a sub-par.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by mickeyd » Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:45 pm

I will never understand why NBC doesn't instruct its commentators to stop commentating while art is happening.
They are paid big bucks to talk so they...
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by CABob » Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:49 pm

Phineas J. Whoopee wrote:
Alex Frakt wrote:I'll start it off. What did you think of the opening ceremony?
As usual I tried to watch but had to turn it off after a few minutes. Performing artists were performing art but those hosts thought it was their job to talk.
Amen to that! But, although I am amazed at the artistic and technical effort that goes into the production I was frankly bored watching it very quickly. In many cases I don't think the camera coverage did justice to the performance. As someone suggested perhaps too many close ups of audience and performers. Sorry, I gave the opening a thumbs down.
Bob

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Phineas J. Whoopee » Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:50 pm

mickeyd wrote:
I will never understand why NBC doesn't instruct its commentators to stop commentating while art is happening.
They are paid big bucks to talk so they...
Thanks MickeyD. And thanks for your service.

The sentence you quoted was not about the commentators, but about their employers.

PJW

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by SP-diceman » Sat Jul 28, 2012 3:51 pm

mickeyd wrote:
I will never understand why NBC doesn't instruct its commentators to stop commentating while art is happening.
They are paid big bucks to talk so they...

Active Management. :)

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by MarkNYC » Sat Jul 28, 2012 4:51 pm

Phineas J. Whoopee wrote:
Alex Frakt wrote:I'll start it off. What did you think of the opening ceremony?
As usual I tried to watch but had to turn it off after a few minutes. Performing artists were performing art but those hosts thought it was their job to talk.

Would they do that in a theatre at a play?

I will never understand why NBC doesn't instruct its commentators to stop commentating while art is happening.

If there is an online source where I can access just the ceremony itself I will be grateful if someone points me to it.

PJW
Doesn't your TV remote have a "mute" button?

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Sidney » Sat Jul 28, 2012 4:57 pm

Hard to mute the commentators and not the music.
I always wanted to be a procrastinator.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Phineas J. Whoopee » Sat Jul 28, 2012 4:59 pm

MarkNYC wrote:
Phineas J. Whoopee wrote:
Alex Frakt wrote:I'll start it off. What did you think of the opening ceremony?
As usual I tried to watch but had to turn it off after a few minutes. Performing artists were performing art but those hosts thought it was their job to talk.

Would they do that in a theatre at a play?

I will never understand why NBC doesn't instruct its commentators to stop commentating while art is happening.

If there is an online source where I can access just the ceremony itself I will be grateful if someone points me to it.

PJW
Doesn't your TV remote have a "mute" button?
Some of the performing artists were actors, and others were musicians.

PJW

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by wbond » Sat Jul 28, 2012 5:49 pm

nolabogle wrote:Too many events, i.e. 1) Men's trampoline 2) Women's group all around rhythmic gymnastics 3) Men's double canoe 1000M, not to be mistaken with men's single canoe 1000M, not to be mistaken with men's single canoe 200M 4) Handball 5) Womens Judo 48kg, 52kg, 57kg, 63kg, 70kg, 78kg, 78kg plus, not to be mistaken with women's taekwondo and its various weight classes 6) Men's race walking 20kn, 50km. Is it racing or is it walking? Combining the 2 just doesn't make sense to me.

No thanks. I would rather watch Petrocelli's demolition yacht derby. http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtop ... 11&t=98107
I could do without rhythm gymnastics, but they ought to bring back tug-of-war: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tug_of_war ... r_Olympics

They might also consider adding some of those "world's strongest man" type events where you strap guys to minivans and what not.

Actually, what I'd really like to see is some all-around athletes standing around, and then the referees pull random events out of proverbial hat - like Iron Chef, but substitue pole vault or Greco-Roman wrestling for haddock.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Muchtolearn » Sat Jul 28, 2012 6:48 pm

I have a friend who won't watch the news or go online anywhere so as not to get spoilers. I haven't done that. The only rule to watching the Olympics on NBC is to have a remote control. As soon as they go to a commercial, check back 3 minutes later. If still on commercials, 2 more minutes. It is unwatchable.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by jebmke » Sat Jul 28, 2012 8:05 pm

Muchtolearn wrote:I have a friend who won't watch the news or go online anywhere so as not to get spoilers. I haven't done that. The only rule to watching the Olympics on NBC is to have a remote control. As soon as they go to a commercial, check back 3 minutes later. If still on commercials, 2 more minutes. It is unwatchable.
It is even worse than that. Once they cut back from commercials you get mainly yakking. We gave up.
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by wilpat » Sat Jul 28, 2012 8:10 pm

RadAudit wrote:As for opening ceremonies - how are you going to top the Chinese?

On the other hand, the English gave a good go at it with James Bond and the Queen jumping in to the opening ceremonies, and Mr. Bean.
On a scale of 10 the Chinese opening ceremony gets a 10 and the London one gets a 1.5!
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by LazyNihilist » Sat Jul 28, 2012 10:30 pm

I loved the opening ceremony. Quirky.
NBC is not streaming for me because I don't have CNBC and MSNBC, but I found 'means' to do it. :twisted: Screw NBC.
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by nolabogle » Sun Jul 29, 2012 9:29 am

Too, too many events continued men’s and women’s canoe – single, double, kayaking – single, double, quad, men: quad sculls, double sculls, single sculls, eight, coxless four, coxless pair, Lightweight Men: coxless four, double sculls, women: quad sculls, double sculls, single sculls, eight, coxless pair, Lightweight Women: double sculls. Then there are various distances of the above.
wbond wrote:
I could do without rhythm gymnastics, but they ought to bring back tug-of-war: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tug_of_war ... r_Olympics
I agree tug-of-war would be an interesting addition. Its a simple, straightforward competetion of skill and strength. Most people have participated in it in their lifetime - so it can be appreciated by many. But in olympic fashion, they would ruin it by adding too many variations, ie. men's, single , double, quad, eight tug of war; woman's single, double, quad, eight tug of war; mixed double, quad, eight tug of war. Then, like the pentathalon, they would need to mix it with another sport that makes no sense ie. skydiving - tug of war.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by SteveB3005 » Sun Jul 29, 2012 9:51 am

I'm saying, there's a lot of curmudgeons on this board. Jim McKay aint' coming back, let it go.

I have the sound down most often anyway, but the graphics are nice and all the HD SuperSlowMotion shots are very cool. The settings are one of the things I'm really enjoying, with the old buildings, bridges, and waterways. It all has a very nice feel to me.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Patchy Groundfog » Sun Jul 29, 2012 9:54 am

I watched some of the opening ceremony but had to turn it off because it was reminding me so much of the village fete in an E.F. Benson "Lucia" novel, kind of comic and cringe-inducing. I'm sure I missed some spectacular stuff by not watching the whole thing.
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Valuethinker » Sun Jul 29, 2012 12:51 pm

I thought the opening ceremony (at least the first hour) wonderful: quirky, British:

- The Red Arrows trailing blue white and red, flying over the scene at exactly 2012 hours
- James Bond
- Her Majesty the Queen in her *first* ever fictional acting role (playing herself 'good evening Mr. Bond'). Can you imagine the guts of Sebastian Coe going to the Palace to ask for *that*?
- the statue of Sir Winston Churchill, our greatest Prime Minister, waving his cane as Her Majesty's helicopter flies over
- the choirs singing 'Jerusalem'
- the chimneys rising above it all
- the Suffragettes
- the Windrush, bringing our first big wave of post war Afro-Carribean immigrants
- JK Rowling and Peter Pan
- the National Health Service nurses (the majority real medical personnel) and Great Ormond Street Children's Hospital
- Mary Poppins, umbrella unleashed, saving the day
- Isambard Kingdom Brunel, our greatest engineer
- The Tempest
- could there have been a dry eye when a choir made up of deaf and hearing disabled children (the Kaos Choir) singing 'God Save Our Queen', with the conductor hand signing? - even the Queen looked moved
- Mr. Bean (Rowan Atkinson) and Chariots of Fire
- the memorial to the 56 victims of 7/7/5, the day after London won the Olympics, 4 suicide bombs - again, could there be a dry eye in the house?
- British TV's first lesbian kiss (from the soap opera 'Brookside') and, it turns out, therefore Saudi Arabian TV's first lesbian kiss (the censors couldn't stop it, live)- could that long journey towards acceptance ever be so well and succinctly summarized?

It was London. It was the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. In all her chaotic and modern glory.

10,000 amateur performers committing 150 hours each to preparation. With not a leak to the press in that whole time: one giant secret kept. Like D Day.

Easy to be British. Easy to carp. Easy to complain. Easy to say the 'glass is half empty'. Devoid of American bombast or Chinese militarism. They'd never stage this in Atlanta or Los Angeles.

But it was British. British as we are. And London as Londoners are. The rainbow of all faiths, colours, sexuality-- drawn together to 'The Smoke'. Glorious. Historic. Chaotic. Disorderly. Done on the cheap. Yet on the day, we are there, and we deliver. Yet capable still of great things.

We have set the standard by which all future Olympic commencements will be judged.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Puakinekine » Sun Jul 29, 2012 1:19 pm

We in the US did not see the same show that you in the UK saw through the BBC. As I mentioned before, the NBC version seemed to have missed a lot. Also, as someone who has not watched commercial TV for a very long time, I could not deal with commercial interruptions very well. It was too disruptive and I couldn’t maintain my place in the already free form narrative. Apparently the camera work was quite different, and the BBC commentators were mostly silent. I believe you can purchase the BBC version through I-whatever they call video.

NBC also cut the memorial to the 56 victims of 7/7/5, essentially saying that it was not of interest to Americans!!!! Unbelievable.

What I most enjoy now about the whole thing is that most of the UK reviews I have read and heard from UK friends and relatives have been very positive. The opening and some foreign criticism seems to have brought people together so that they can enjoy the party that they are putting on and paying for.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Muchtolearn » Sun Jul 29, 2012 1:24 pm

jebmke wrote:
Muchtolearn wrote:I have a friend who won't watch the news or go online anywhere so as not to get spoilers. I haven't done that. The only rule to watching the Olympics on NBC is to have a remote control. As soon as they go to a commercial, check back 3 minutes later. If still on commercials, 2 more minutes. It is unwatchable.
It is even worse than that. Once they cut back from commercials you get mainly yakking. We gave up.
I like soccer. So today, with all their channels, they only show one soccer game at a time. If you stream it on the internet, it is a full 1 minute behind live action. On MSNBC they actually take commercial breaks during live action for 2 minutes, which I have never heard of. I do not believe the ratings they claim.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by KyleAAA » Sun Jul 29, 2012 1:59 pm

I am currently in Denmark. I never really noticed just how US-centric the NBC coverage is. Here, they don't seem to focus just on the Danish athletes, perhaps because there just aren't nearly enough of them to fill 2 weeks of programming. Also, it's surprisingly difficult to follow some of the sports if you can't understand the commentary.

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runner9
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by runner9 » Sun Jul 29, 2012 2:43 pm

We only get NBC and CNBC. So, my choices during day are kind of random: 2 mornings straight of cycling. CNBC has only had boxing. After Austrialia in gymnastics they said to watch the US in primetime. Seems like primetime is US centered; daytime not so much.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by HardKnocker » Sun Jul 29, 2012 8:34 pm

USA TV only shows sports that Americans have a medal chance in.
“Gold gets dug out of the ground, then we melt it down, dig another hole, bury it again and pay people to stand around guarding it. It has no utility.”--Warren Buffett

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by fishnskiguy » Sun Jul 29, 2012 8:52 pm

[Inappropriate remark removed by admin LadyGeek]

Between NBC, MSNBC, and CNBC I'm seeing a lot of good coverage of many sports. I got two straight hours of women's Foil Fencing on MSNBC that I really enjoyed. The Italians really showed great stuff.

Chris
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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by idahospud » Sun Jul 29, 2012 10:21 pm

Comparing opening ceremonies becomes less important as I get on in years. There does though seem to be alot of overlap from one ceremony to the next. For example, flying across or into the stadium seems to be a common occurrence ever since the 1984 LA Olympics, but if I remember correctly, the 'flying' was most impressive at the 1992 Albertville winter games where a whole acrobatic circus displayed its skills above the stadium.

The Beijing ceremonies four years ago are still technically tops and London has made it relatively easy for Rio to outdo them four years from now, if that is what the Brazilians want to do.
The London ceremony was Danny Boyle's artistic presentation and any criticism, including mine, of this and any other artistic work is mostly subjective...
in that spirit, let me say that I did think the queens two dogs (corkies?) were really cute.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by ge1 » Mon Jul 30, 2012 4:21 am

Love the live streaming!

Beijing was unwatchable for me with all the delays and commercials, this is great. The app on my iPad seems to be working well as well. I doubt that they get high ratings on prime time, but this is the future of watching sport events.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Jul 30, 2012 6:17 am

idahospud wrote:The London ceremony was Danny Boyle's artistic presentation and any criticism, including mine, of this and any other artistic work is mostly subjective...
in that spirit, let me say that I did think the queens two dogs (corkies?) were really cute.
Wise words. For me, having fast forwarded the countries, the last hour was just not as good as the first.

Corgies. The Queen brought her two Corgies to the filming, for a co-starring role, completely unscripted.

it is the heartfelt desire of most British actresses, and maybe most British women, to be a Bond girl. Her Majesty has joined Honour Blackman, Miriam D'Abo and Dame Judy Dench (M, the head of the Secret Service, in the recent films) as a Bond girl. And showed a hitherto unseen, very British, sense of ironic humour in the process.

A couple of things with very strong resonance to Londoners:

- the video memorial to the 57 victims of 7/7/05, the day after we learned we had won the Olympics

- Stephen Lawrence was a black teenager murdered by a white gang in the 1990s in South London. The police first action was to arrest Lawrence's friend, who called in the attack. the London Metropolitan police behaved with prejudice and incompetence towards Lawrence, leading to a formal enquiry. After nearly 20 years, 2 of the 4 assailants have finally gone down-- unrepentant.

One of the carriers of the Olympic flag was Stephen Lawrence's mother, a woman whose quiet courage and determination has stood out for the last 15 years through Official Enquiry and mistrials.

Putting her on a corner of the flag was class, real class. Spoke to Londoners above all about the values which we wish to uphold, the multi cultural and multi racial diversity that we are, and the knowledge that in that long journey towards a harmonious London, we are a long way from the end.

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Re: Let's talk about the Olympics

Post by Valuethinker » Mon Jul 30, 2012 6:23 am

Puakinekine wrote:We in the US did not see the same show that you in the UK saw through the BBC. As I mentioned before, the NBC version seemed to have missed a lot. Also, as someone who has not watched commercial TV for a very long time, I could not deal with commercial interruptions very well. It was too disruptive and I couldn’t maintain my place in the already free form narrative. Apparently the camera work was quite different, and the BBC commentators were mostly silent. I believe you can purchase the BBC version through I-whatever they call video.
iplayer
NBC also cut the memorial to the 56 victims of 7/7/5, essentially saying that it was not of interest to Americans!!!! Unbelievable.

What I most enjoy now about the whole thing is that most of the UK reviews I have read and heard from UK friends and relatives have been very positive. The opening and some foreign criticism seems to have brought people together so that they can enjoy the party that they are putting on and paying for.
Nothing like an American shooting his mouth off about us to pull us together ;-).

7-7-05 was not of the scale of 9-11, but the victims came from at least 10 countries, many were quite young, in their 20s, just working in London for a few years. We have had terrorist attacks before, and of course the Blitz, but this was a body blow, our own young men in a calculated effort to create terror. The closest example I can think of was the Sarin attacks on the Tokyo subway (Murakami wrote a great book about that 'Underground').

London. Tokyo, New York. Baghdad. Tel Aviv. Jerusalem. Mumbai. Karachi. Amman. Kabul. Oklahoma City. We've all had these horrendous suicide attacks, and I guess it is part of what defines us as cities, together, now.

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