Let me preface the preface below: This is an extremely long post where I ramble about the Olympics and London. If you’re into that sort of thing, keep reading. If you want to see some pictures from my trip to London last year, scroll down. If you just want to know the point I’m making, it is: The Summer Olympics are this Summer. They’re being held in London. I love London. I love the USA. Go Red, White, & Blue!
Let me preface this post with a text message I sent to my sister: Is it weird that I’m super pumped for the Olympics? Like I want to throw a party.
You should be super impressed by my use of the word “like” in text form. I’m sure literary critics and English teachers everywhere are rolling their eyes at me. Anyway, the Summer Olympics are a mere 59 days away! I don’t remember the last time I was this excited for the Olympics. It probably was 1996, and I was less excited and more terrified of Izzy, the blue mascot guy that no one really knew what he was supposed to be. [Quick little Wikipedia research: “the computer animated character with the ability to morph into different forms was a departure from the Olympic tradition in that it did not represent a nationally-significant animal or human figure.” Okay, so we still don’t know what he was supposed to be. Got it.]
Anyway, the Olympic Games! I think whoever decided to have them every four years is a genius. With shrinking attention spans and our fad-embracing culture, the Games need a little intrigue. We like to latch on to things we don’t really know too well. For example, the Internet Censorship petition, the KONY 2012 movement, and more close to home the Amendment One issue in North Carolina. We like to cling to these things that ignite passion inside of us and promote/demote them until we get bored and move on to the next crazy idea. I think the Ancient Greeks knew us a little too well and now we have the Olympics. Something that ignites our passion for (at least) one of two things at our core: sports and our country! We like to learn all about sports and countries we didn’t know existed, all while wearing our red, white, & blue and yelling things like ‘Merica! And since the games are only two weeks every four years, we love it. Or at least most people do.
I have to admit, I am excited for this year’s Summer Games solely because they’re being held in London. That’s the reason I want to throw that party I mentioned in my text to Abby. I have this uncontrollable desire to construct a Big Ben and put it in my living room while friends and family watch Archery, Badminton, Cycling, Fencing, Gymnastics, Rowing, Synchronized Swimming, etc. (Yes, I totally knew all of those were Olympic sports…I didn’t look up the schedule of events…)
I want to have fish and chips and wear fancy hats like the Brits do. I want to fly the Union Jack from my balcony and spell words that have “z”s in them with “s”s. Basically, I want to be British all while cheering on the United States. Can I do that? Is that allowed? I mean that’s what the Kate Middleton of the USA would do, right?
My love for London can be summarized easily:
1. It’s one of the few foreign places you can go and still get by with speaking English.
2. They have royalty.
3. My trip there was my first plane ride ever.
4. They have buildings that are still being used that are older than the Declaration of Independence!
5. Downton Abbey.
6. London was the first place I realized men in their 20-somethings are extremely attractive in a suit and tie.
Maybe my reasons for loving London are a little shallow. Maybe not. Maybe I’m super pumped about the Olympics because I went to the site where they were building the arenas and hotels to accommodate everyone who will flock to the UK in July. Maybe not. Either way, I think this year we will have a lot to talk about as people all over the world come together to support their individual countries and realize there is more to life than their little corner of the world.
So who wants an invite to the party?