So, the London Olympics are underway. We have all paid, via taxes, for the games being held in London. Few people to none, in the lead up to the games, seem to give a damn about what is happening and when. The media, particularly the BBC, continue to shove it down our gullets but their efforts are met with derision and indifference. Why is this? Is it a lack of national pride, or perhaps just a genuine lack of interest? The news and other such programmes will tell you of the enthusiasm felt and shown throughout the nation but, not having seen London or the south of England, us northerners do not seem remotely bothered. A friend of mine told me a joke: “The TV told me to get in to the Olympic spirit, so I went round all my neighbours and charged them three hundred quid each for a party they’re not invited to.”
I’ve long since been of the opinion that the Olympic games is a platform for the poorer sports in the world which cannot draw in crowds on their own merits. Would anyone show up and fill a stadium just to watch the shot-put or the pole vault? Definitely not. Would the cycling or the rowing garner as much interest if it were not displayed under the header of the Olympic games? No chance. So why, then, by bundling all these not-so-entertaining sports together do people care all of a sudden. For three years out of four, when the Olympics aren’t on, track and field events receive little to no air time as do pool and velodrome events.
I think, in part, the public are annoyed at the sheer amount of money spent on ugly landmarks and stadia which once again all seem to be situated in London. It is an unfortunate attitude that many who live in “the city” do not see the rest of the country as important. I dare say that if the games were held in Birmingham or Manchester, there would be a lot more public interest from those outside the capital. As it is, it kind of feels like yet another case of Britain revolving around London.
The British Olympic games are in serious danger of being the first to lose money, bringing in less employment and tourism money than was spent on the various stadia and villages. They are also in danger, I fear, of being a serious flop and flounder fest. The organisers have already shown the South Korean flag in place of North Korea’s during a women’s football match, the latter nation were competing in. The North Korean ladies immediately stormed off the field and an entire nation was slighted on the very first day of the competition, two days before the opening ceremony.
I honestly hope I am wrong, but I think these games might be an embarrassment to Great Britain. Thank God we’re not from London, eh.