The sport connection in the Olympics is sometimes tenuous, for example how is synchronised swimming or board diving a ‘sport’. The scoring in these activities depends on the vagarities of the judges, so if they are having an off day, their decisions could be reflected in the score they give. I realise that the Olympics cover cultural events as well as sporting ones, but isn’t it stretching the imagination to call synch swimming, gymnastics etc as ‘sports’ when surely they are artistic interpretations of movement; discuss. It would be like judging two ballet dancers doing Swan Lake. I can imagine the commentary:
‘….and ‘ere we ‘ave the principal ballerina from Ukraine (oo sewed on all her own sequins) and her partner fresh from the shot put, dancing the dying scene from the ballet, oh, bit if a slip there, the male dancer looks like ‘e’s done himself a mischief, but they score 95.7, putting them in 3rd place for the medals …..’
OK perhaps I exaggerate a bit but competitive sport should be about who passes the finishing line first, scores the most goals or chucks something metallic the furthest, nest pas?
After two days off it was hard to get back into the stream and take up where I left off on Sunday. Today was not my finest hour. I felt tired and irritable all day, despite having a good night’s sleep, so you can never tell. To cap it all I was back in table tennis for the third time, you can only have so much ping pong, luckily I was back of house checking credentials of the athletes and others wanting to get into restricted area. I was lucky enough to meet my first sleb (celebrity) of sorts today in the shape of Paul Drinkhall, the GBR table tennis player who lost his first round match last week. Interestingly my partner on this particular post was a young man from Stuttgart who was here to improve his English but volunteered from Germany and has been in London since March. I doubt his English could improve a great deal because it is already very good. Denis flies back to Hamburg on Friday to take up a post as a life guard on the north German coast for three weeks. Ah the freedom of youth. The seating bowl was packed for the bronze medal play off involving the team from Germany against Hong Kong China (is that an independent country as far as the IOC are concerned?), the former winning their second bronze medal in table tennis, which pleased Denis. During a break in the matches, the arena announcer, an Irishman by the sounds of it, found and interviewed Dame Mary Peters (NI) who won the pentathlon Gold in the 1972 Munich Olympics, one of only four GBR won in that Olympiad. She was also one of the champions who handed over the lighting of the cauldron in the opening ceremony to a young athlete. It was lovely to see Mary and hear her positive message for the future of her sport.
So I make no secret of my lack of enthusiasm of table tennis and was rather glad when the shift ended and I went to have lunch and get home. Ah the bliss of sunshine, I managed to catch some rays in the dying embers if the afternoon, and read the new edition of ‘Private Eye’ which was surprisingly upbeat about the Olympics, coupled with the usual snide comments to counteract this or perhaps they were being ironic again? Never can tell with PE, but it’s still a fun read, although probably not as hard hitting or controversial as it used to be. Apologies for the lack of photos today, forgot the camera, told you it was a lousy day! Catch you on Friday.