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Tag Archive: Bradley Wiggins


A gold medal with the olympic rings inside

A gold medal with the olympic rings inside (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Its been a glorious 17 days of sporting action. London did the UK proud. I do not think London has ever seen anything like this before –  a 2 week (and a bit) carnival of sport and sheer joy.

I spend all of last week in London watching the games and doing the tourist bit too. I could not blog using my ipad because for some strange reason, the latest WordPress app update is malfunctional. There was me thinking updated technology was meant to make things easier.

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Any road, a fantastic time was had by all. The weather sulkily stayed good. It wouldn’t rain on this parade. The athletics was great. The athletes were superb. Even the Royal Family was out in full force supporting the Games. The highlight for me was watching the Men’s 200 metres and being totally overwhelmed by the sheer excellence of the Jamaican sprinters. Mo Farah won 2 Golds in the 5k and 10k – What an achievement. It takes guts, stamina, drive and some incredible motivation to achieve such a feat. And who will ever forget the ‘mobot’!. The Golden Girl, Jess Ennis did not disappoint either. She came, overcame all the others and delivered. Perfection! I was also impressed by Michael Phelps. What an amazing achievement! All those medals collected over 3 Olympiads. He is a legend and will forever be remembered as a fantastic athlete/swimmer. Another Legend I was honoured to watch was  the lightning bolt that is Usain Bolt, in the flesh. He has swept all before him. What an athlete. I wouldn’t be surprised if he turned up in Rio in 4 years and simply sprint away with the medals again. The British cycling Team was marvelous too. Victoria Pendleton, Bradley Wiggins, Sir Chris Hoy, and the rest of the crew did not disappoint. The British Sailing team,Tennis players,  the Boxers, Pentathletes – all the athletes did remarkably well. Andy Murray finally won a title at Wimbledon! He was also oh so close to becoming a Double Gold medallist!  Football attendance  crowds beat all the records it is a pity Team GB ladies and men’s teams disappointed. However, the finalists gave us a good show. Brazil were shocked by Mexico, it seemed like the Brazilian team presumed they would walk away with the Gold medals. Congrats to Mexico. Many World records were set or broken-David Rodisha’s was exceptional. He simply annihilated all before him in winning the 800 metres.This young man is one to watch for the next few years. There was one other remarkable athlete who shall be remembered for his courage and athleticism- Oscar Pistorius. He fought hard to be included in the main Olympiad when others argued he should instead participate in the Paralympics. He did himself proud, his country and the whole world. Hats off to him.

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I hope this penny-pinching Government will continue supporting the sports people now the Olympics has left town. They have been making the right noises so far. However, I never trust politicians and I will not be surprised later if we find out the sports budget is somehow curtailed surreptitiously. A lot of effort and energy needs to be invested in competitive sport at Primary school and high school levels. Moreover, pupils should be made to realise you have to compete to win. Taking part is important, however, a winning mentality needs to be nurtured from a very young age. This is something I find quite disappointing every time I attend our local school sports day. There is no real competition at all. The remarkable achievements of the youngish Chinese and American swimmers are a case in point. Pupils should learn to compete at an early age and strive to be the best in whatever sport they take part in.

Some people my choose to disagree here with me. I found it hard to appreciate that BMX racing is an Olympic sport. Please! Roller-blading next!  Since we will be in Rio, maybe introduce Samba dancing as a sport too. I have got nothing against the BMX sport, however, I have always viewed it as a hobby. Walking marathon is another. Well,how does one train to be a walking marathonist? I just don’t get it. Golf has been added to the list of Olympic sports. I love watching Golf, but I seriously do not think its an Olympic sport. I don’t think anyone will ever convince me to think otherwise. Why are they leaving out Squash and or even Darts? These important people entrusted in making such decisions are a funny bunch indeed.

Closing Ceremony

The closing ceremony was just as spectacular as the opening ceremony. Brits know how to throw a party! They did a good party. I will never forget watching the politicians dancing to the music, especially Boris Johnson!! It was interesting, didn’t realise the man could move! He is just as quick on his feet as he is with his one-liners! The ceremony was great. It did market some of the best bits about the UK to the outside world-I loved the convertibles on show! Wow! If I was some rich prince somewhere in the Middle East watching the Ceremony on my super-cool 3D, I would have been on the blower instructing one of my many assistants to get me one of the convertibles! It was a remarkable show and the Guardian’s apt description is on the money:  “a kaleidoscopic spectacle” that showed “the energy of British popular culture over the past few decades. We even had a glimpse of the Spice Girls, they arrived in London Cabs! It spiced the evening for me,and millions others. The imagination, artistic imagery and the crowd made it such a special occasion. A fitting end to the ‘best Olympics games‘ bar none. According to the Washington Post: “The host country truly was Great Britain. London delivered a rousing Olympics. …..the most organized, enthralling and enjoyable Games since Sydney in 2000.” London 2012 won a Gold Medal of its own. I hope people like Mitt Romney and the others who doubted this great City could deliver are eating humble pie. And I hope this is not the only misjudgment this Republican candidate has made.

Hats off to all those involved. The 70 000 volunteers were remarkable and made the games all the more enjoyable. The few we met were always smiling and always helpful. The crowds were magnificent too. Lets hope the Olympic spirit will linger longer and be like  an extra-strength dose of a mood-enhancing drug to the country and the economy.

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A silver medal with the olympic rings inside

A silver medal with the olympic rings inside (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Finally they have arrived. The whole world witnessed one magnificent spectacle last night when the Olympics were officially kicked off.

More than 11000 athletes are competing. Well, watching the archery today I thought, umm maybe the word athlete is abused here. Whenever ‘athlete’ is mentioned, I for one expect a specimen of physical fitness, evidence of hard work at the gym, running swimming or whatever. The Olympics motto is ‘Faster, Higher, Stronger’ and I am sure the Olympic family embraces all those who take part.  But looking at the archers,well! It doesn’t matter anyway. The Queen apparently parachuted herself into the Olympic Park! Who would have ever thought or imagined that possible. Whether it was the Queen or not is secondary. David Cameron was in attendance too. What he made of it I will always wonder. The best bit for me was watching the athletes walking into the stadium. They are the performers, without them there will be nothing to watch.

Mark Cavendish (cyclist) did not win the gold medal as everyone expected. He didn’t get any medal at all. After Bradley Wiggins‘s victory in France last week, we all expected Cavendish to triumph on home soil as well. He is a very, very good cyclist.It wasnt meant to be. Michael Phelps could not get a look in as well. He came fourth in the 400m Individual Medley. Ryan Lochte,had the cheek to beat him. The American part of the Olympic Village must be a fun place to be tonight. Team GB ladies football team is doing well and I hope that will be replicated by the male team.

Football/soccer

Just been watching English teams playing or showcasing the ‘beautiful game’, in the USA and Canada. They prefer calling it soccer in those parts. Liverpool just played a 0-0 draw with Spurs,and that got me wondering whether the Americans enjoyed it at all. Or how much they are enjoying it. Of course there is a significant proportion of fans who have always watched ‘our football’ or migrated from the hotbeds of football and they will of course enjoy watching the teams from England and Europe. Liverpool have a massive fan base across the globe too. The English teams have every right to invade those ‘virgin’ territories to develop more marketing opportunities. How is the market responding?  The MLS seems to be getting stronger and more competitive too. It’s a good thing the MLS never thought they would name their competitions a ‘world Series’ like the MLB does. Is soccer proving to be a major competitor to MLB, NBA, NFL, NASCAR etc? As a football lover, I really hope soccer becomes big in America. The other side of the same coin though, is that I would also love to watch say the Boston Red Sox playing the White Sox or the Dodgers in the UK. The NFL have a game annually at Wembley. Surely MLB could also have something similar, at Lords or the Oval! After all even NBA has exhibition ,matches, plus, there is the Harlem Globetrotters!

Darts.

It is indeed a very good weekend for sport. We have got darts tonight as well. We have got the World Matchplay at Blackpool. Here is to Hoping Phil ‘the Power’ Taylor is victorious. Whats in a name anyways? All these sports like to call their tournaments ‘world’ this and that. Americans do that for competitions involving not more than 2 countries. Yes Uncle Sam that’s true. Darts now have also got onto the act and proclaim to have a ‘World Matchplay’. Possibly involving more than 5 countries. The mind boggles. But does that give these sports the right to add ‘world cup’ to their competitions? At least with football (or soccer we know every country in the world gets a look in. Why is darts not an Olympic sport,any road? Surely it is a sport and you are very unlikely to find anyone taking performance enhancing drugs in this sport. Moreover, there would have been a guaranteed Gold Medal for Team GB – Phil Taylor would have won it. It time the IOC reviewed the games on offer. Talking of performance enhancing drugs, Hysen Pulaku from Albania has all ready been thrown out of the Olympics for using anabolic steroids. At least two other athletes from Morocco and Hungary have been precluded from taking art in the Olympics because of the use/abuse of these illegal substances.

Formula One

Congrats to Lewis Hamilton getting pole for the Hungarian Grand Prix. The boy is made of sterner stuff. The British tabloids have been relentlessly trying to make his personal life a nightmare of late. If not discussing the ins and outs of his contract with McLaren, they are busy trying to turn a mole hill into a mountain – Apparently Lewis Hamilton had the temerity to hang out with mates (including girls)  when Nicole Scherzinger was away working.Therefore his girlfriend is either (1) going to give him a stern talking to, or (2) Dump him. Well,well, well,I bet the same journalists are allowed to go out for drinks with friends of the opposite sex without asking for explicit permission from their other halves! Ignore the barracking Lewis, and win the Hungarian Grand Prix for all the millions who follow you and McLaren. Admittedly McLaren have had a bad time of late with pit stops, mechanical faults, weather et al. Hopefully they have turned a corner! An interesting fact I just felt I had to throw in: Sebastien Vettel has never won in July. He doesn’t win in July. Therefore the competition for first place tomorrow will just be Alonso, Webber, Schumacher and or Button. Those are my bold predictions. Ladies and gentlemen.

It is quite exciting at the moment.London is doing well. We hope the weather decides to take a back seat and not rain on this parade. Oh and we hope Mitt Romney and his apparatchiks are watching: ‘YES WE CAN.

Pamela Anderson as C.J. Parker.

Pamela Anderson as C.J. Parker. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Tour de France has been my  inspiration today. Watching Bradley Wiggins do so well has got me thinking.  The Tour is the ultimate test of endurance. You have to extremely fit to compete. The body endures a real test, and only the very fit survive this extreme test. It is one of the toughest tests in sport. Small wonder why some cyclists resort to taking extra help in the form of performance enhancing drugs. That maybe, however, the Tour has made me take a tour of this Temple The Almighty in His Wisdom bestowed upon me for safe-keeping. I  am the Temple keeper of some sort. Keepers do fail too sometimes too.

As we add on the decades to our life, we also pile up a few goods and extras to the Temple. The keeper of all, even waifs and strays. Travelling the lengths and breaths of our bodies we notice the humps, the bumps, fault-lines, airport runways, blind spots and even crevices. All the result of age. Over time these bits and pieces of our architecture begin to tell so many stories.

The Vanishing six-pack

Well every seasoned traveller will attest to the worries and despair when your luggage goes missing at the airports. The vanishing-six-pack has caused me nothing but worry. Despair, despondence and acute consciousness of the faults in my life. All those kebabs and beers consumed in our twenties or thirties have slowly built up a good refuge in the Temple. Chasing away these unwanted guests, or impostors has caused me so much agony and problems. We spend thousands at the Gyms in the ( vain) hope that these former friends can be cleansed off  the Temple.  We lose the wrong pounds. Money goes down the drain unlike the bad cholesterol that stubbornly clings on to the insides of the Temple. We pound the streets running everyday, weekends. Some clever clogs are making a living setting up boot camps, personal training, running teams etc to help us evacuate these former pals. However, it is also vital to add that over-sized temples are ironically  envied in some geographical regions. Really.  In some societies and  cultures pot-bellies are said to be evidence of a ‘good living’. A life well-lived. But surely they should also add possibly a ‘shortened life’  to that, if all the Government warnings on obesity are to be believed.  It’s probably true that the pot-bellied live well because you will never see a starving middle-aged bloke looking pregnant unless they have some serious medical condition. It’s so funny when you see all these perfect symbols of a ‘good life’ trying so hard to breathe in their ‘statements of good living’ . One of these days someone will cause themselves some serious injury as they desperately try to invent or recover their lost six-packs by holding breath as they walk along the beach.

Lustre

Tottering slowly into middle-age has in a way revealed an age-old truism. The temple starts losing some of its lustre. That allure that for so many years past used to magnetically draw the opposite sex to want to sample its wares. The facade starts playing tricks. Chinks start appearing everywhere. Facial hair starts sprouting everywhere, greying too. The chin, not to be outdone by facial hair suddenly decides to clone itself. Its like two of us can play that game too. Another tale of  well-used jaws. The chin becomes a symbol of man’s ability to reinvent themselves to survive. After all the first law of nature is survival of the fittest. If you can not do that by yourself, you have to gang up. Facial hair will sprout wherever it fancies, a real symbol of manliness! Ha ha ha. Well, the temple can survive facial hair by regularly removing it. We butcher our faces in trying to drive it away. Sometimes we win. Sometimes we lose.The face tells stories of constant battles to fight the onset of old age. Some even resort to various concoctions to help keep that youthful look. Botox parties, Botox clinics, facelifts are just some of these attempts to counteract nature’s  progressive jackpot.  Facial hair though it maybe a nightmare, it is tolerable. Some people even love it if some of the sideburns I have seen lately are anything to go by. Some members of the opposite sex apparently adore men with facial hair! However, nasal (and the ears)  hair is punishment personified. Abominable intrusion into the temple. Not easy to remove. unappealing and unwanted. A guest whose welcome is over the second they turn up. What is it with middle-age that causes hair follicles to become senile and forget where they are meant to work? Why take away hair from the head turning it into a mini airport runway and somehow, by hook or some natural trick transplant the same  in the nostrils!  Whether it serves some biological purpose or not, its unwanted.  I can’t even discuss the fairer sex’s battles with hair in unwanted parts of their temple. I still value my sanity.

Saggy parts

Do legs get shorter or is it because the bellies become somehow elongated,and the bums fearing being overshadowed decide to go down too? I bet our backsides have plenty to say about our lives. They possibly maybe unhappy we over did the seating  or lying on the couch over the years and they call us  ‘lay abouts!’ Unimpressed we never bothered to give them enough exercise, or we did not eat the right food and did not really take much care of them. We rarely see them Well only those walking behind us do.  How many people really and constantly wonder how their  backsides look like everyday? Honestly? Apart from ‘Does my backside look big in this?’ A question dreaded by many men,and we always deftly try to skirt around it instead of giving the honest response. Apparently they should be some unfathomable  particular shape. Seriously, there is some Competition in the UK called ‘Rear of the Year – Is there anything dafter? I have seen the pictures of some of the winners and wondered where the judges got their ideas from. Calling them judges is actually giving them a title they don’t deserve.  There is a word for people constantly ogling others rears, but I wont go there. How do they decide a rear is better looking? Is there like measurement tools, do they have a feel, do they line them up against a wall like the Police do but this time with their front against the wall?  Bum-beauty identity pageant/parade? How does one qualify to be the so-called backside ‘judge’? I will do it for free. Did you hear that? I hope some agent reads the blog. I have so many questions that need answers. My CV, if the ‘Rear of the Year‘  people are reading – I have 20/20 vision and well-maintained hands,  if that would help! Since this is a serious article I think I have said as much as one could about backsides before one gets dragged down to the murkier side of backsides.

The Temple’s uncontrollable movements

Talking of saggy bits, the Tour de body has just unearthed another gem. The saggy arms. The chicken wings (not the Buffalo wings Americans love to scoff), it’s the flabby arms. Sometimes they move about as if dancing to  some strange music. Flapping about as if demented. You know it is time to take some serious corrective action when those dances start. off to the gym, or pounding the streets we do. Just any exercise will do. There is nothing so unattractive as watching someone hopelessly dancing out of sync to the music. The chicken wings are not nice. Again they tell a story of a life well lived –  without out exercises perhaps, and loads of yo-yo dieting. Madonna‘s arms make one realise something has got to give. She is lucky though because of all the money she earns,she can afford an army of personal trainers.

The Chest

Many moons ago, I remember watching Baywatch a lot. Like most young men. It was enjoyable watching these women running about in the red suits and saving lives. Watching a lifeguard in action is never that exciting really!  But watching the likes of Pamela Anderson, well….The tour of the Temple could not be complete without revealing the other magnificent symbol  of middle age. The humps particularly located in the chest area. Man boobs will not draw people to watch Baywatch, if ever a version featuring well-chested man prancing about the beach in revealing tops. It is one aspect of the temple that bewilders me.  Why does it take as many as up to 40 years for the breasts to grow?  Some guys’ chests could surely give a few women a run for their money. Another anomaly is that although we spend most of our teenage years and a significant proportion of our 20s/30s/40s ogling at the big-chested women. However, when the same bits grow big on our chests it’s a no no. Just embrace it. It’s a sign you have lived a good life.

The journey from the top to the very bottom of the temple is a fascinating one. So many stories can be told by from nooks, crannies,bits and bobs. It’s a life story, however, told it should be an interesting story. Some of the stories maybe short. Others long, some punchy and others bouncy, some a bit sensationalist. They are all stories of the life we live.

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