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And so the madness starts…

More astute readers may have noticed I have been away for a week. Some may even have cared [/sob].

Anyway, I have been Elsewhere. Specifically the Lake District. Upon the return journey this afternoon (which was thankfully clear) overhead info boards down the M6 and M61 was displaying “helpful advice” for those planning on journeying to see the Sports Day at Boris Johnson Academy (Formerly Ken’s Comprehensive). They advised planning the journey and to leave in good time etc. How thoughtful of the Highways (Robbery) Agency! Indeed I’m sure Londoners who read this have already well laid plans to make an exodus up North or over to the West Country or to Timbuktu or the Faroe Islands or Alpha Centauri via any means possible: trains, planes and automobiles, buses, jet-packs, mini-submarines, pogo-sticks, roller-blades, dog-sleds, gypsy caravans, hot-air balloons, Segways, shanks ponies… I suspect someone will half-inch a Hansom Cab from the London Transport Museum and in true Sherlockian fashion promise the driver a shiny sovereign if he makes Welwyn Garden City by nightfall… It’ll be like the Wacky Races on the M1 and probably more fun than the 10,000m (an event nobody apart from Brendan-frigging-Foster can get excited over).

For myself I shall be watching one event. The men’s 100m final. And that only to see if Usain Bolt manages to violate The Special Theory of Relativity. Well, at GBP 20,000,000 / 62m and considering it’ll all be over within 10s I reckon that my edification from the whole shooting match will work out as only cost about GBP 32/s which I think we can all agree is excellent value for money. Except of course that doesn’t include the opportunity cost of the BBC (what we all pay for) showing this drivel for fifteen hours a day straight for the duration – i.e. anything else they might show.

Bizarrely, we have had a singularly exciting Premiership footie season (that’s the English Premiership – I pity the Scottish football fan*) and there is still life in the season yet!. And no, that isn’t just because I’m a Magpie. Now that all costs us… Well, whatever you want to pay for it! And, anyway it’s cheaper. Ah, Nick but it’s so nastily commercial. I say it’s so wonderfully commercial. I have Sky TV but not Sky Sports. Both my choice. And perhaps more to the point if “amateur” sport is really amateur why is every second TV advert showing very conceivable product as the official whatever of London 2012? And Gideon “The Artless Dodger” Dodger picking all our pockets to pay for the “Greatest Show on EarthTM“? Shouldn’t they pay if they’re getting something out of it? I mean PT Barnum not only didn’t require subsidy but became a very rich man on that schtick.

I really am getting angrier as this gets closer. And I’m not even going to comment on the uneasiness I feel about connecting national pride to individual sporting achievements supported beyond handsomely by a state desperate for national prestige…

*From The Onion a while back- “Police are investigating whether a pound coin thrown onto the pitch during a game at Ibrox was an act of hooliganism or a potential take-over bid”.


  1. Mr Ed says:

    Having travelled from Cornwall to the Midlands of England by car today, I saw no propaganda at all on the Motorway signs. I did notice that bossy messages on Motorway information signs stopped in late May 2010, which I had hoped was due to a Coalition Directive, but they had resumed Agitprop on Motorways around August 2010. I had hoped for a ‘Cretan paradox’ of sorts to appear on the signs, ’Ignore Government Popaganda’ would have been my choice, as they tended (and continue) to spout slogans like ‘Don’t drink and drive’ at 7 am on a weekday, or ‘Stop beating your partner’ (‘wife’ not being PC) (spot the embellishment).

    The Olympics are being used to foster the Zombie re-birth of East Germany in the UK.

  2. RAB says:

    Yes Nicholas some of us did notice, and were not amused. We seem to have received no paperwork requesting said “Vacation” and so are forced to deduct you one weeks Kudos in lieu 😉

    The only event I will be watching is the Women’s Beach Volleyball, and as the participants have been requested to wear more conservative outfits this year, I’m not certain even that is worth warming up the 36″ flat screen for.

    One thing’s for sure, I will be no where near London in July. I have a large house with four bedrooms here in Bristol however, and if any of you London dwellers feel the need to escape the mayhem that is about to befall you, well book now. But I warn you, my rates are steep. I am not above exploiting desperate markets given half a chance.

  3. bloke in spain says:

    It is becoming increasingly likely, for reasons not of my own choosing, I’ll be in the UK for the entirety of the games. Particularly galling as one of the motivations for abandoning the country was the bloody games.

    On motorway signs, the one that has pissed me most is the sign that advised me “Don’t drive tired, take a break”, which I did at the next service area. That would have cost me £8 if I’d been foolish enough to be a UK resident. Explaining to the company the difficulty of getting a French magistrate to understand the concept of charging to use an autoroute rest area was a pleasure though. Sue for non payment if you dare.

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