Hello, well I guess Olympics are taking priority in the UK over the next few weeks. For those who don’t live in the UK I’m not sure how much you have seen via your chosen form of media; the Olympic torch has been carried by 8000 nominated individuals around GB and Isle of Man. The torch route has brought people together whether they like sport or not, it’s been a chance for everyone to get out and cheer on the celebrities but more importantly the local heroes. I hope it will inspire everyone to get out and join in with the community on a more regular basis. If we could capture the spirit shown we would be able to fix quite a few of the problems we face around the world in these times of ‘austerity’.
I was one of the millions who sat through the Olympics 2012 Opening Ceremony, and have to say as a Yorkshire bird born and bred I was very proud. We have Seb Coe as the over Lord of the whole shooting match; my sister shared his geography book at school so there’s a credible family connection. A local hero from my birth place Doncaster, Ben Parkinson he was the star of the whole Olympic torch event, check out his web page for more information, you will truly be inspired.
Then the oaths were taken by Sarah Stevenson, Taekwondo world champion from Doncaster, who shamefully missed out on the BBC Sports Personality of the year, as did all the sportspeople of the female gender…hmmm…no…move on!
The highlight of the show, the forging of the rings reminiscent of the huge steel foundries my dad used to drive to, he was an artist in his spare times, he took numerous photographs then interpreted his views in paintings of the red hot steel pouring and sparking in the darkness. I recall the steelworks in Sheffield, where you could drive along, across train tracks hauling goods from one huge building to the other. It is a major part of Sheffield heritage and I am thrilled it will become part of our art heritage with the recently announce sculpture of the stainless steel man who will compete with the Angel of the North for road side beauty.
Enough with Yorkshire, NO, there was yet more. Our very own Arctic Monkeys sang to the world in their truly Yorkshire accents. I can’t help but love them as they sing about places I know, and am very glad they haven’t fallen into the trap of singing with an accent that may please more sponsors but never sounds quite right.
I have no doubt missed someone obvious, accept my humble apologies. The only bit I was disappointed with out of the whole event? An old Paul McCartney, shame we ended on a bum note, it should have been Shirley Bassey and Goldfinger but you can’t have ‘em all.
I am now looking forward to the Paralympics, which happily receive more TV and media coverage every year. They always make me realise that just getting access to sports facilities in the first place can be an achievement, let alone to get to the other side of the world to compete often without the massive sponsor ship deals the other athletes often enjoy.
If you don’t enjoy sport, just try a bit and see what all the fuss is about. The ‘minority’ sports need support to convince the powers that be that there is interest there, and if all else fails just conform to a stereotype and ogle the beach volleyball players. They have worked hard to get there all the same.