Monday, August 16, 2004

The Games Begin.

So, we watched the Olympic opening ceremonies over the weekend. The parade of Greek history was pretty well done and fun to watch. The parade of nations was practically endless, as usual, but I always like to see the delegations from the smallest nations. They always seem to be having the most fun and, when you get right down to it, are what the Olympic spirit is all about anyway -- the little guys getting a moment in the sun to compete on an equal basis with the big boys.

But the commentary, on the other hand, was the worst. I generally like Bob Costas, and he wasn't too terribly bad considering the thankless job he was given. Katie Kouric, on the other hand, managed to sound more inane everytime she opened her mouth. It's hard to single out any line of hers as the worst of the night, but I'm partial to "The nights here in Greece are colder than the daytime."

Ya think?

Anyway, there were a couple of heartening things I noticed in the parade of nations. First off, the North Korean and South Korean delegations opted to march into the stadium together. It's great to see a little more detente in this fractured world, especially involving North Korea. There's even talk of them fielding a unified team next time around. (Let's just hope they don't make golf an official sport by then, or Kim Jong Il himself will be forced to compete.)

Secondly, it was also refreshing to see several predominantly Muslim nations, including Egypt, Afghanistan and others, allowing women in their delegations for the first time.

Now, I've just got to find time to watch some more of the Games in the coming weeks. Except for softball, I tend to be interested in the lesser-known sports and the non-American competitors. Good thing NBC is drawing all their cable networks for coverage, because it looks like there's plenty of room for the stuff I like on CNBC, Bravo and MSNBC, since I know the main network won't be featuring any of it...


Anonymous said...

I generally don't like sports, but the Olympics are fascinating to me. I enjoy the swimming/diving the most (and the ice skating during the winter). The gymnastics girls can be easily made fun of with their silly hand motions (I know, I'm bad), but damn they've got some guts! I could never do that stuff.

I'm peeved because I didn't get to see the opening ceremonies with Björk singing. Hmph!


Anonymous said...

I loved the opening ceremony! The history of mankind was fun, but the actual technics that went in to the display (wires, water, fire, lighting, lasers, smoke, floats, makeup) were fascinating! So flawless! Nobody fell off their wires! It was great. I, on the other hand, thought Couric was tolerable, while Costas made me want to hurl! ;) - - DancingQueen