Monday, 15 February 2010

Olympic spirit

Watching the Winter Olympics (or as Dave put it, 'the celebration of how many different ways you can slide about of some form of frozen water') has become the new favourite pastime in the Brit household. Mainly because watching the female speed skaters makes me feel a lot better about the size of my thighs, which is no mean feat, but it is also the one show in which my husband will join in the 'what on earth are they wearing?!?' conversation. We're finding it compulsive. For the record, the Canadian female speed skating outfit with the cling film effect around the tops of their legs was unanimously voted NOT GOOD.

As a Brit there is really only one defining winter Olympic moment. It might, in fact, be our only Winter Olympic moment, but it is a great one. In 1984 the ice dancers, Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean, clad in purple floated their way through their Bolero routine and to a perfect score for artistic impression, a feat yet to be equalled. I just watched it again, it is still wonderful.



The 1984 Olympics were considered to be a great triumph. They were feted for their diversity, their encompassing nature and lived up to the Olympic ideals of competition without politics, religion or racism. The residents of the host city were celebrated for their kindness and generosity.

The venue?

Sarajevo.

8 years later the city was under seige, the Olympic venues were destroyed, the ski slopes and luge runs were mined, the seats in the stadiums used to make coffins for those killed during the conflict.

So much for a lasting Olympic spirit.

20 comments:

WeDoAdventure said...

It is a sober reminder that peace is a very delicate thing and noble ideas can be all too quickly forgotten.

Owen said...

History Punk did an interesting item on the might-have-beens associated with Belgrade's failed efforts to host the Games.

Great respect to Torvill and Dean - not only did they make you catch your breath at the time, they also came back afterwards to help support the victims of the war. That was the real Olympic spirit, not the IOC's collusion with Chinese human rights abuses.

nappy valley girl said...

Very true.

We are enjoying the Olympics too - and it's quite nice to be in a country where they are actually winning some medals....

ourprivateblog.wordpress.com said...

Having a Canadian husband I did wonder whether Canada would adopt me for the Olympics - I lose all my national spirit with these games (/please don't hate me!!! :))- oh, and I love the way Dave defines the games - spot on I'd say!!

Srebrenica Genocide said...

@ Owen: hahaha. Belgrade hosting games? That was a good joke. One day when they host Olympic Games in Kandahar, Belgrade will be next, lol.

Anonymous said...

@ Srebrinica Genocide
Well Sarajevo will never host the Olympics again because it’s dead, Belgrade and Banja Luka has a better chance then Sarajevo in a 100 years!!!

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

WDA - they can indeed. I'm feeling a bit cynical about the Olympics at the moment.

Owen - Couldn't agree with you more about the IOC. Feel the same way about FIFA quite often. Such a shame.

NVG - are you as obsessed with the awfulness of some of the outfits as we are. I can't wait for the figure skating to start!

Kathryn - I'd be rooting for the Canadians too given the chance!

Sreb Gen & Anon - this is a friendly blog, please bear this in mind. Thanks guys.

Michelloui said...

hahaha! I loved the comment about the thighs--me too! ;)

The Olympics are amazing to watch, summer or winter. I admire the thousands of hours of dedication as well as the natural abilities. I too love watching Torvill and Dean, fantastic! Thanks for the vid.

Heather said...

so sad, such a sober reminder of what the world is like.

angelsandurchinsblog said...

OK, new interest in all things wintry now I know there's a fashion (or lack of) angle in there. And good point about the Olympic spirit. On the one hand, I love all things Olympic, and the triumph of hard work and dedication over the dull day to day. But it's not exactly meritocratic, particularly the winter sports. Dunno. Rich nations have all the cash and win all the medals, and it's not exactly a level playing field. Unless you're Eddie the Eagle, and clearly don't care about winning!

notSupermum said...

sorry it's taken me so long, but I've finally done the stories and song meme you tagged with for eons ago!

Babies who brunch said...

god. how hideous. of course.... good to remember.

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

Michelleoui - the thighs are impressive. I love the Olympics. The drama, the spectacle, the knowledge that that fall is all someone has to show for years of hard work. Brilliant

Heather - it is sad. It is frustrating as well. Sarajevo (and Bosnia) had the world at its feet and they are still trying to get back to where they were in 1984. Makes me cross just to think about it. Sometimes I wander around and look at what could have been and want to shout 'you fools!'.

A&U - The fashion angle is brilliant. Can't believe you haven't noticed it before. Compulsive viewing. Even Dave enjoys the conversation. Know what you mean about the rich countries though, am just glad that I don't live in the US, don't think I could take the hype.

Not Supermum - thanks so much for doing it - and I LOVED your post.

BwB - it was / it is. Even today when we go to Sarajevo I can't believe what happened there.

Muddling Along Mummy said...

I think as Brits we all got programmed in 1984 to have an addiction to winter sports - that routine was FAB !

Its so sad that the legacy of such a great games we destroyed by the war

peabee72 said...

I can't get over how young they look, and you're right- it's still an awesome routine. So sad about Sarajevo, really does highlight how the transient nature of human concern

Px

P.S Because I love your blog, and I loved your secret post club gift, I've nominated you for a sunshine award.. you've probably got a whole raft already but, y'know!

x

Lady Mama said...

We're hooked here too. I like watching the outfits too.. some of the figure skating ones have been quite, um, interesting... those shiny blue leotards the Ukranian skaters wore for instance - wow. I'd forgotten the 1984 Olympics were hosted in Sarajevo.

A Modern Mother said...

Come home soon!

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

MAM - I think you are right, or maybe we were just at an impressionable age in 1984 and fell in love with the romance. My new obsession is snowboard cross, they are mad. We watched it last night, it was brilliant.

peabee - thanks for the award. And they do look young don't they. MInd you, we all did in 1984!

LM - How have I missed the Ukranian costumes? I shall be looking out for them now. The Japanese speed skater, with the virtually see-through costume and who was wearing some racy knickers was an eye popping moment last night.

MM - Can't wait. x

Very Bored in Catalunya said...

A really poignant post, shows just how quick a country can self destruct. Thankfully though back on the mend.

Torville & Dean will always have a place in my heart, I am from Nottingham and had the pleasure of watching them win the British medals in Nottingham the year before the Olympics. Also my Step-Grandmother used to work with Jane at Norwich Union - my small claim to fame.

Brit in Bosnia / Fraught Mummy said...

VBC - I think all Brits love Torvill and Dean. They were just brilliant, and so lovely with it.