Guest Post: 7 Reasons Why It’s Best To Skip The London Olympics
1. Public Apathy. The 2012 London Olympics begins on Friday, 27th July 2012 and already excited Londoners are basing their holiday plans around this auspicious event – one in ten are planning to go on holiday during the Games to avoid them completely.^ The fact that so many of the ‘hosts’ of the competition are planning to do a runner suggests that the marathon course could be as deserted as the opening scenes of the film 28 Days Later – not a great look.
2. The Weather. There’s a reason why the Olympics are traditionally held in sunny countries. Have you ever seen an Olympics 100m final run in the pouring rain? Let’s see how fast Usain Bolt is when he’s knee-deep in smoggy water as the starting pistol fires.
3. The Logo. Now, be honest; would you stick this piece of art on your fridge door if your child brought it home from school? And for a logo which was designed to reflect the cultural diversity of the games it seems to have upset an amazingly diverse bunch of people. Iran has objected on the grounds that it thinks the logo spells out the word ‘Zion’ and a British man rang a London radio station to claim that he had suffered a seizure while watching footage on television that used the symbol. “It came up on TV and I was thinking about the 2012 Games and then I was out,” he said.
4. The Olympic Torchbearer. The quirky choice of logo raises the worrying possibility that Olympic supremo Sebastian Coe will go for a quirky choice of individual to light the flame at the opening ceremony. While Atlanta had Muhammad Ali to light the cauldron in 1996, it is a terrifying thought that Britain might opt for someone like Kriss Akabusi, Eddie ‘The Eagle’ Edwards or Zara Phillips’ new horse. Lord Coe must put modesty aside and light the torch himself!
5. Organisation. If you excuse the pun, Britain doesn’t have a great track record of organising big events recently. Anyone who remembers the Millennium celebrations will shudder at recalling a glum-looking Queen joining hands with Tony Blair to sing Auld Lang Syne. Blair himself has said that he would have “preferred a visit to the dentist” to attending the opening night of the Millennium Dome and he was the man who rubber-stamped its construction. Then there was the breakdown of the VIP train carrying guests to the ceremony, the decision that the new London Eye wheel wasn’t safe to carry passengers on the big night and Prince Phillip anxiously remarking that the acrobats swinging above his wife’s head didn’t have a safety harness.
6. The Football. Great Britain’s participation in the Olympics football tournament seems to point to a distinct lack of organisational skills. Worries that there would be an English bias to team selection were dismissed by the GB committee – who then put England assistant manager Stuart Pearce in charge of picking the squad. The Welsh FA and Scottish FA soon started discouraging their players from participating for reasons too complicated to detail here and, at time of going to press (29th February 2012) tickets for the matches have yet to sell out.
7. The Stadium. Will it really be ready in time? Delays to the opening of the new Wembley suggest that all may not be smooth. The prospect of the hammer being tossed while builders are still hammering in the final nails is a nightmare scenario which is best enjoyed while sipping a cocktail on a foreign beach. Enjoy!
^Research by Price Waterhouse Cooper, August 2011