I got the troops sorted bright and early on Friday morning because I knew that the 'LIVE' coverage of the Opening Ceremony in the UK was due to start at 7.30pm GMT. Television here in the US had promised live coverage of all events, so I naturally assumed that meant the Opening Ceremony as well, and wanted everyone to be sitting in front of the TV at 11.30 PST (8hr time difference between Cali and UK)...I couldn't have been further from the truth.....No live coverage of the Opening Ceremony at all...No Opening Ceremony in California until 7.30pm PST - a whole 8hrs later than it actually occurred - what a waste of time! All my friends and family were talking it about the whole thing long before I was even able to watch, which really took the sparkle out of things!
Then I discovered from my Dad, that the US coverage had cut a whole chunk out of what it showed of the Opening Ceremony - for reasons I can only speculate about! There was a whole tribute to those that couldn't part-take on the 2012 Olympics because they were the victims of terrorism! My hubby says that the puritanical side of the US just won't stand for that kind of thing - I say 'Does the US honestly believe that it is the only country to have suffered at the hands of terrorists?', because guess what, you aren't. There are millions of people around the globe that suffer at the hands of terrorism every day of their lives. I know the Americans have a reputation for wanting to be the biggest and best at everything - but Terrorism.....really? Not showing a tribute to it's victims on the TV doesn't make it any less real you?
Anyway, even with this shocking revelation, I was confident that the coverage of the actual events would be fantastic, and would knock the BBC into a cocked hat!
America - you do know that there are other countries taking part in the Olympics don't you? Seems to me that the coverage is totally centred on the US athletes, which in one sense is fantastic, but it would be even better if us 'the audience' could be privy to information about what other athletes the US were competing against, and what the event standings were as a sport progressed. I stayed up late last night to watch the coverage of the gymnastics. I saw all the US team members compete in the vault, the asymmetric bars (proper name for what the US calls the uneven bars....lol), the beam and the floor exercise. The coverage also showed one British girl completing her routine on the beam, although we were not privy to her score for said element, and we were shown another gymnast from a country whose name escapes me because the glimpse was so brief and again no score was shown....Finally, after team USA had completed all of their elements we were given the news that they were top of their group, and very briefly shown a results table - I know that GB was 2nd, but the table was shown for such a short time that I have no clue who the other countries in that group were, or what their overall scores were.....This is not good sporting practice USA...Yep it's great that you came top of your group- it would have been even better to have known the standings after each element, and to have known what other countries were in your group....I would even have liked to have seen some of the gymnasts from other countries completing their elements! After the team USA competed in their group we were told that the next group was about to start their rotation and that this this would include Russia and Romania - so it seems that team USA were not even competing against the best countries in gymnastics, so had a pretty easy walk in the park - and then coverage ended....We did not get to see the Russian or Romanian Gymnasts perform with the exception of one Russian girl completing her floor exercise! Come on USA - this is NOT GOOD SPORTING PRACTICE!
The other spot I wanted to see was the diving - the UK has a lovely young boy called Tom Daley who competed in his first Olympics in Beijing at the age of 15, I believe....I was looking forward to seeing him compete in both the synchronised and solo diving events, so I checked with NBC to find out when the diving would be on. According to the schedule yesterday - there would be no diving until Wednesday! Imagine my horror when I got up this morning to find my friend talking on Facebook about watching Tom Daley in the diving! Then I discovered that the 10m synchronised diving was in the early hrs (my time) of the morning. NBC had got the schedule wrong yesterday when I looked..... I guess the only saving grace is the knowledge that as Tom dives for GB they probably wouldn't have shown him anyway!
To summarise - I now have a renewed admiration for the good ol' BBC and their coverage of sporting events, because I know from old that yes the Brits love to watch their own sportsmen compete, but they also love watching the other competitors as well -so they know what the competition looks and smells like - so they know what our guys and girls are up against - so a victory can mean something, and so a defeat can mean something too!
I may live here in the US now, but I am damn proud to be British and in the words of Jeff Daniels, from the opening scene of the new HBO series 'The Newsroom' - "America is not the greatest country in the world" and it's about time they got down off their high horse and actually gave their people some reality instead of rose tinted glasses - because the world does not revolve around the USA, the USA is merely one country among hundreds that make the world what it is! The world revolves around the Sun and nothing else.
The Three Most Honest Minutes of TV...
This short 3 min video will wake a lot of people up. Rarely do we see the truth so blatantly being presented. This 3 min video is supposed to be aired on HBO to kick off a new series called The Newsroom. This video is a MUST WATCH!!!
The part of the opening ceremony that was kept from Americans
Have a great day