I’m not a big fan of the Olympics in general, but have had my interest aroused by talk of – shock horror – a British sporting success story, as well as characters such as Bolt and Phelps performing seemingly super-human acts with consumate ease; although I’ll still never quite grasp why making horses walk sideways, BMX riding and beach volleyball (for all its probably viewing rating enhancing properties) are classified as Olympic sports. But still.
Anyway, today it came to a close – and as the next hosts, it was the job of the Best of British to receive the Olympic flag which had been so expertly hosted by China (ignoring all the political stuff, let’s face it, it was a bloody spectacular event). We marked this with a bus, on which was carried David Beckham, Leona Lewis (who I’d never heard of before) and Jimmy Page. Of course, Bumbling Boris Johnson was also present as the Mayor of London, and basically, the result was – well, probably not quite as embarrassing as the games themselves will be.
Since China ‘won’ the Olympics thanks to their superb haul of medals, and an idle conversation today before lunch at Cat’s folks, in order to give Team GB the best possible chance to get the best tally of medals in the next Olympics (and upset the whinging Aussies further – I thought we were supposed to be whinging poms!), we need to introduce a number of new sports into the Olympics forthwith…
- Cheese rolling – ship all our competitors most promising athletes from any disciple over to Coopers Hill in Gloucestershire and make them run after a double Gloucester from the top. The Team GB competitors from nearby Brockworth will have mastered the technique and take the gold, silver and bronze medals – the bemused foreign competitors will amass injuries so severe that there will be no chance at all of them competing in their preferred events.
- Bog Snorkelling – a contribution from our Welsh contingent, for those Olympians hardy enough to have dealt with the plummet down Coopers Hill, the opportunity to contract all manner of gastric infections by completing two lengths of a 60 yard trench cut out of a Welsh peat bog. In doing this, they must wear a snorkel, mask and flippers – and not use any conventional swimming strokes – so Phelps will be screwed!
- De-badging – something for the Essex team to consider – each country is presented with an S reg Vauxhall Astra from which they must remove the badges identifying either the make or model of the car, the team that does so within the alloted time and without leaving any visible marks will be the winner. This could, in future Olympics, be extended the include the replacing of walnut-themed dashboards, the installation of neon or LED based superfluous lighting as well as installation of unconvincing looking ‘sporty’ body kits or low-profile alloy wheels.
- Darts – let’s face it, it’s just time, isn’t it? We could have a pub-sport decathlon involving a pool match followed by a variant on fencing involving pool cues, make use of the countless abandoned skittle alleys around the country, who can win the jackpot fastest on the bandit – followed by an intense session on the ‘who wants to be a Millionnaire’ quiz machine. Before the decathlon is allowed to end in a dignified game of dominos however, there would need to be rounds of drinking games involving clothes pegs, golf balls, a funnel and a tube and topped off by a yard-of-Ale challenge.
- Shin Kicking – is already a proud staple of the Cotswald Olimpicks. Long have football fans such as myself decried the mincing nancy-boys who litter our once beautiful game with theatrical diving under the slightest of contact from their opponents. Well no longer, let us shed football from the Olympic billing and replace it with this, it will be much more entertaining – particularly if it is the footballers who we insist upon competing!!
- Sports Day – we decided that the ‘lite athetics’ we inflict on youngsters is perhaps dismissed all too soon as we march on towards adulthood, so we would like to see events like the egg and spoon race, the sack race (which is, according to Wikipedia, a former Olympic sport already!), most definitely the skipping race and it would definitely be prudent to include the three-legged race, where people from the Isle of Man are sure to be a runaway success! It would also be amusing to have the Dad’s race and get the competitors fathers to compete in a 100 yard dash! Unlike current day sports days, winners will be celebrated, losers will be summarily ridiculed.
I think these few ideas could start to swing the balance of 2012 into our favour, and very much keep in the games with the level of dignity and seriousness with which I expect the ceremonies and suchlike will manage to achieve! Of course, one thing that it is vitally important that we include in the 2012 Olympics is “Ping Pong”, because it was invented in 19th Century Britain. In fact, any event we opt to include is relevant because all sport was invented by Britain. I shall leave you with this statement by Boris Johnson to clarify any confusion I may have caused.
Let’s face it folks, it’s gonna be embarrassing – we might as well just sit back and embrace it, and attempt to enjoy it! And from my own personal point of view, and not for the first time, be extremely grateful that I don’t live in the nation’s capital.