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Monday, 16 July 2012

......Are you here for my pleasure... Or are you going for gold?

Ok I'll admit when London won the olympics I was pleased, felt really proud and couldn't wait to see our athletes perform. Time has gone by and while I still hold a huge respect for all athletes who participate in the games I feel less and less proud of the London Olympic family.

From the moment tickets went on sale I felt strangely removed from the ocassion, I could not afford to bagsy tickets without knowing how much or what I may get. I was signed up to the Olympic alerts thingy but it failed to let me know how the tickets would be allocated or how the system actually worked. It was all too vague to get involved.

As time has gone by, the more I hear about behind the scenes shenanigans the more disconnected I become. Only this morning I heard that if , in your packed lunch, you don't have the sponsors drinks you will be asked to leave or your lunch will be taken away. All manner of sponsorship deals agreed to avoid having any advertising in the actual stadium...who's going to police this? Touchy subject eh, I'm sure members of the armed forces will be delighted to be told their specific job will be to check kids lunches to make sure they have got Maccy D's and C**a C**a in their boxes...cue Healthy Schools initiative...ahem. All things related to 2012 Olympics including the words Gold, Silver and Gold are currently protected, Olympic Kebabs an existing business of many years had to change its name so it was not in breach of Olympic copyright madness...they are now called Lympic Kebabs....

Although I am not able to properly bemoan the ORN about to start in London I know the direct affect. For those who are not aware Olympic cars (sponsored by B*W) being driven by volunteers, who incidently have no 'knowledge' of London streets have been allocated exclusive lanes to get dignitaries and athletes to and from the Olympic village easily...remember it takes 3 years to do the proper appears that already an Olympic car was seen trundling happily the wrong way down a one way street. I am biased, my better half is a London cabby. I will not even try and express how his living is going to be affected or how black cabs are not afforded the luxury of being able to use these lanes, or should you take a cab to the Olympic stadium how cabs are not allowed anywhere near the stadium, they can drop you off but you then have to walk 20 minutes to get to the stadium, or that the changes in roads and routes within London have only just been realeased without apparent consultation on how it may affect this iconic trade, or how bus drivers are demanding an extra £500 for just rocking up to work. Hmm, bit biased of course, many within the trade may disagree, I talk only for me. So to almost prove the point... as I type there are some Olympic athletes stuck on a coach, they have been for 4 hours...very lost.....I won't dwell.

Don't get me wrong I want these games to be a success, I want our athletes to be cheered on by the home crowd, there is something special about the Olympics, that I will not deny. I will watch and cry when we win a gold, curse when we miss out. I am fully aware that the Olympics has changed, Atlanta saw to that, commercialism hit as did the need to provide the greatest show on earth every 4 years. London 2012, the public transport games, sponsored by companies that aren't allowed to sell their goods in our schools, I'm sure it will all be fine.

I've used a lot of Olympic buzzwords here...I await my fate.

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