Archive for the 'BOCOG' Category

Olympic News and Notes, July 3, 2008

– Sports Illustrated  has a primer on equestrian sports. I’ve always liked equestrian events, and find them infinitely more interesting horse racing.

The Charlotte Observer profiled Cullen Jones, a 50m freestyler who is trying to ease into the 100m freestyle.

– Yao Ming, who seems like one of the coolest athletes on the planet, is holding a raffle to benefit the victims of the Sichuan earthquake. The prize? Be Yao’s guest at the games. You can purchase the tickets here.

– The trials keep rolling on. Bernard Lagat, one of the best stories of the Olympics, qualified at 5,000 meters. Lagat, who is Kenyan-born, is a naturalized American citizen and is very proud to represent his new home. Michael Phelps continues to kick ass.

– The Chinese are so hell bent on showing that their drug testing works that they have barred a few of their own athletes. Luo Meng, a wrestler, is the latest to get banned. Meng was using a diuretic which would help a wrestler cut weight.

Why Does China Want to Ruin My Summer?

Time Magazine asks a salient, yet frightening question: What if China does not allow the games to be broadcast? From the article:

Differences over a wide range of issues — from limits on live coverage in Tiananmen Square to allegations that freight shipments of TV broadcasting equipment are being held up in Chinese ports — surfaced in a contentious meeting late last month between Beijing organizers and high-ranking International Olympic Committee officials and TV executives — including those from NBC.

Seriously? I cannot even fathom an untelevised Olympics, and would probably cry if I didn’t get to hear Bob Costas pontificate nightly, but that is not the bigger issue. I have to ask – what is making China so afraid that they don’t want anything, not even the games, caught on camera? They claim that their citizens are happy, and no one will protest, and that only the sun will shine on Beijing, so wouldn’t they want to broadcast that wonder and delight to the world? Their desire to control every aspect of coverage will only backfire. I just hope that it doesn’t end up depriving the world of the goosebump-inducing moments that we have come to expect with every Olympiad.

Best and Worst of the Olympic Movement: June 4

Best: Aimee Berg has the story on how the U.S. women’s field hockey team qualified for the Olympics, the first time in 20 years. They rebuilt the program with plain old hard work and fundamentals.

Worst: People with “mental diseases” cannot go to Beijing during the Olympics. What does this mean? If you pop a xanax, or take an ambien on the flight over, are you banned? What qualifies as a mental disease? Does this mean that a child with Down’s Syndrome can’t go to the games?

Here Goes

Friends, Romans… I love the Olympics a bit too much to not write about them, so in addition to writing here and here, I will use this site to share the best and worst of the Olympic movement. For today:

Best: Tommie Smith and John Carlos will be honored at the ESPYs this summer for their courageous black power salute during the 1968 Olympics. Considering the political climate surround the Beijing Olympics, and the fact that the Olympians are being encouraged to not speak their mind at this summer’s Games, we need every reminder of the potential impact that Olympians can have on the world.

Worst: Marketing representatives of the Beijing Organizing Committee of the Olympic Games are holding a press conference on their efforts to stop ambush marketing. Look, I understand the importance on branding, and the fact that sponsors should not have their efforts cheapened by Manny’s TV World having an Olympic Blowout! But a press conference to talk about it?