Jul 27, 2012

Bring on the Show!

Unless you’ve been living under a rock these last few weeks, you’ll be aware the Olympic Games start this weekend in London. There are ads and signs and references everywhere and even though we’re on the other side of the world from the action (in New Zealand), the excitement is beginning to mount. People are stocking up on caffeine and vitamins so they can watch the events all night and stagger through work during the day.

But we actually don’t have a telly in our house. Well, we do have a telly but it’s not plugged in to any kind of aerial or anything. We only use it to watch DVDs. There are a number of reasons for this—mainly, we don’t have time to get hooked into series TV. Also I can’t stand ads. Embarrassingly as well, I’ve been known to get stupidly addicted to soaps. I’d rather the kids spent their screen-time in a more interactive way (all hail the mighty computer) – or, even better, read a book or played some crazy imaginative game round the house (‘Magic Unicorns’ is the new fave for the twins. ‘War’ is the choice of the older two).

"Television" by Salvatore Vuono
Now I know there are so amazing shows out there that I don’t see. Occasionally we do go through an entire series of something by renting it from the DVD store (if I’ve heard really good things about it). It means we can watch without ads and without having to wait a whole week for the next episode. But mostly we watch movies. We’re the most regular customers at our local Blockbuster I think—hubs and I watch a few a week at least. I love movies—like to have the whole story told in a couple of hours. And the kids don’t miss out completely so aren’t socially ostracised ;), they watch DVDs too. All those fave shows are available and yay—no ads! But basically we’re really happy living in our TV-free zone

But of course, it’s the Olympics now and these really are pretty special. All my children are at primary school and they’re all doing projects on it. And given we do swimming and running and soccer etc, I think it’s great for the kids to see the elite in these sports. And they’re fun. So I said to the hubs, “we really need to be able to watch some of the Games” – and lovely hubs replied, “I’ll happily watch any of it but PLEASE don’t make me watch the (mumble mumble) Opening Ceremony!”

Now here is one of the few points on which Hubs and I are not aligned in perfect harmony ;)

"Clown in Parade" by Debspoons
I am a parades girl. If there’s a Santa Parade, a Spring Parade, any kind of Carnival, I’m there. Marching bands, clowns, pomp, circumstance, I want it all.

Hubster? Not so keen. Really not. Gets bored. Wants to move. Wants to do Something Else.

Can you believe that?! And it’s in London this year—we all know how well the Brits do Pomp and Ceremony!!! They’re the home of pageantry!!!! I so totally can’t wait to watch every minute of that opening ceremony!

And so it is that we’re off round the road to my mum-in-laws at some early hour on Saturday so we can see it on her ‘bells and whistles’ pay-TV scheme. That’s the kids and me. Think Hubs might go for a run.

I can’t wait to see what kinds of special effect things they do, how they get us through the loooooong parade of athletes, how they’re going to make the whole place come alive. And how will the Olympic Flame bowl-thing light up? Will there be some fab trick to it?! It’s all such great, traditional stuff!!! A must see, in my book!

As for the sports themselves, some of those are must see too. Personally I’m really looking forward to the men’s diving. And the men’s gym. And the rowing. There’s some very good inspiration to be found at the Games! ;)

So tell me, are you going to be watching the opening ceremony on Friday/Saturday?! Are you going to be glued 24/7 for the next few weeks??!!


  1. Hi Natalie,

    We'll probably watch the opening highlights at some stage but I doubt we'll be getting up early to watch the whole thing. Too many other things to do this weekend. I'm sure the sports will be addictive though. I can never get over how easy those elite athletes make difficult things look.

  2. Nat, I'm with Annie -- I'll probably watch the highlights of the opening ceremony. Just enough so I'm not totally ignorant of the goings on. And I know the Olympics are a huge thing, but...a whole fortnight of sport? It's not that I don't like sport, just...a whole fortnight of it?

    That all said, no doubt somewhere along the way I'll get caught up in the excitement of it all. :-)

  3. Natalie! I'm embarrassed to say that I'd completely lost track of the Olympics! We're still Outback in Oz and completely televisionless. In fact, I haven't been keeping up with news at ALL! I kinda like it, actually! LOL

    Having said that, I do enjoy the Olympics and have definite fave events. I can sit and watch swimming for hours - especially the 1500 metres! And the equestrian events. Love those!

    Opening and closing ceremonies... ummmm, I'm happy to watch the shorts!

  4. we are all set here to tape the Opening Ceremony. That way we can do our own editing. Over the days we watch as much as we can of the games. I find myself watching sports I usually have no interest in. LOVE the swimming, gymnastics, track & field & equestrian.

  5. Hi, I love your books. I'll be watching them but not taping them anymore. In '88, I taped the Summer and Winter games. My sons and I took turns 24/7 taping and pausing during commercials. I ended up with about 37 tapes- mostly commercial free on T120-EP speed.

  6. We taped the opening ceremony & watched it at a more sane hour. It was wonderful. Only ONE ad break, which we glossed over with the fast forward button.

    We will watch as much as we can of the actual games. Again we tape & watch at our own convenience.

  7. Hi Annie - some of them do make it seem amazingly effortless don't they?! And for once I think the time difference actually worked in New Zealand's favour - it wasn't too early a start for us at all! :) I did love that ceremony!!

  8. Michelle - ordinarily I'd be with you - 2 whole weeks of sport and nothing else?! But it happens only every four years - and I think that's what saves it for someone like me (who's not a total sports freak) - also, I think many of the sports we get to see aren't ones that usually get a huge amount of coverage here. So I do tend to indulge! :)

  9. OOh Sharon - how lovely to be in the Outback and TV free - think you canget away with having lost track of them with that as your excuse!!!! I'm with you on the swimming - so exciting!!!! Did you get to see the opening ceremony highlights? It was fabulous!

  10. Hi Marybelle!!! :) You're so right - being able to tape and watch it when you want it is the way to go!!! The Opening Ceremony was awesome wasn't it!!! :)
    I'm going to have a keen eye on the rowing too as we've got some gun rowers in team NZ! :)

  11. Hi Michael - I'm so glad you love my books! :) Wow - you're an Olympics fan then huh?! 37 tapes worth is a lot!!!! But awesome to be able to go back and watch what you want, when you want!!!