I love watching the opening ceremonies, because I am all about the spectacle. I want the host country to blow me away with sound and visuals. Since the games are in London this year, I’m hoping for holograms of all the monarchs going back to Henry VII. (I’ve been practicing that list in eager anticipation. William IV always throws me for some reason.) The Parade of Nations, wherein all the competitors enter by country, is another favorite. Not least because there are a great many countries that you never hear about except during these 11 days every four years. St. Kitts and Nevis? C’mon! Plus the parade of crazy outfits. Plus the fact that everything is spoken first in English and in French. Chant it with me: Les Etats-Unis! Les Etats-Unis! Les Etats-Unis!
The games themselves are hit-or-miss for me, since they often (a) take place outside of prime time, and (b) involve people I don’t know doing things I don’t understand. I’m hoping Bob Costas will be out in full force summarizing events, providing athlete backstories, and generally being awesome. Because for any event covered by NBC Sports—be it horse racing, golf, or pole vaulting—I expect touching previews and wrap-ups. #TeamCostas
Plus, I recently read an article in ESPN Magazine about what goes on in the Athletes’ Village during the games. Apparently, it is like a giant fraternity of skilled/healthy/beautiful people full of adrenaline and looking to celebrate with no commitment. It’s no surprise that condoms are shipped in by the crateload. Seriously.
Then you have the closing ceremonies, which are a bit of a downer for everybody. The winners realize their time of glory is almost over. The losers are losers. The sore losers have already gone home. The monarch holograms are about to be put back in the Matrix. Sad times.
But tonight? Tonight I’m on the edge of my seat with several litres of Diet Coke.
* #1 is the Presidential Election.
** True story. I realized on Wednesday that I had somehow cracked the heel of my left shoe. The rubber heel.