So, if you didn’t know, the 30th Olympiad is almost here, 110 days to go to be exact and I’m starting to feel that old excitement that I only feel every four (4) years and every year at Christmas! Heh, heh!
Now I’m not going to go into any arguments about whether the Olympics matters or is stupid or not. It is one of the few events in the world today that truly and I mean truly brings people together from all walks of life from every corner of the globe in a sense of accomplishment and mutual love for sport and respect for your opponent, and if that isn’t enough for it to have some merit I don’t know what else is, given all the hatred sharing around the world today.
I’m also not here to discuss the ridiculous amount of money that is spent on the Olympics every four years. Yes, it is expensive to host, but better to spend it on this than on weapons to aide war or to go into some crocked politicians (or stock brokers) pockets.
What this series IS about are Olympic Games memories. From opening ceremonies to special promo ad’s to anything that I remember seeing about it, when growing up watching the Games. My earliest memories were the Atlanta Games in 1996. I was probably nine or ten then. I don’t remember the Summer Games but I do remember the Winter Games. It was the first time I saw ice skating and it was the most beautiful thing in the world to me. These people just gliding across the white ice like they were flying. Flying! And I was a HUGE Peter Pan fan, still am, so you can imagine! 🙂
Athens 2004 Summer Olympic Games on August 13, 2004, (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)
The Olympics. The name stuck with me, and after being educated that it wasn’t something that happened every year far less for everyday! I’ve never missed one since, as a couch spectator, of course. Each Olympiad has found me cutting schedules out of the papers, falling asleep on the couch on school nights to catch a late race because the time frame was different. My parents were very lenient during the Olympics, thankfully. They love it too!
There’s something about…the idea or the feeling of being apart of a wider, extended team. Having athletes go out that represent your country, seeing your flag and knowing that the world is seeing it as well and being able to cheer your people on, it confirms not only the athletes talents to be able to reach there but by extension your country’s existence as they carry the image of their flag on their uniform. The same country that you are apart of is what nurtured these individuals, who are striving for this great act and your existence, as a spectator or upcoming athlete hoping for the same opportunity, is solidified as well while supporting your country’s team. Even to see other athletes from other countries and feel the joy for them as well when they won was overwhelming for me as a child and still is in some ways as it confirms that we are all connected and apart of something bigger than ourselves.
And that is the Olympics for me. One of the greatest testaments of what humankind COULD achieve if we all worked together and respected each other, even as adversaries. And speaking of adversaries, my first Olympic Memory video that I leave with you is about just that. In 2000, when Sydney hosted the Olympic games, there was a remarkable set of promos for the 27th Olympiad titled under ‘Celebrate Humanity’. Voiced by Robin Williams they each sought to show the true meaning of what the Olympics is about for the athletes and the fans and volunteers that flock to it every season. Yes, many use it as an opportunity to get their ad out, but I’m not talking about those people. You will not see any Olympic ads from corporate sponsors here, no matter how cute they are.
Every week this page will feature one of these Olympic Memories that speak to the true spirit of the Games. I probably won’t go any further than the 1992 Olympiad as the videos (all pulled from the Tube) represent my Olympic memories, meaning the things that I remembered during the short time that I have been viewing the Olympic Games, so feel free to tell me of any before that, that touched your heart so I can share it here as well.
Featured Video: Celebrate Humanity: Adversary
Written by – Travesaou