Well, here we go – a fortnight of wall-to-wall Olympic wikifacts and every possible BBC “journalist” hunting for clangers, and by the looks of this not having to look too far:
All I have heard today is that none of ‘em can find out who is going to light the flame tonight – good, there needs to be at least one thing that can be kept away from their intrusive snouts. My money’s on Her Majesty, by the way, or would have been if her odds hadn’t been slashed by William Hill this morning. After all, she’s the only one who could possibly get past 18,000 troops and into the stadium with a lighter in her handbag.
I have turned the radio on once so far today, and the TV twice. Both times they stayed on for less than five minutes, before being turned-off with a hurrumph. The three stories that caused me to do that were:
- An interview with the two guys who designed the Olympic Torch saying they were over the moon to have JUST been told they could go to the opening ceremony tonight. What on earth is wrong with this organising committee that it can find a place for the Olympic Cultural Ambassador to Guam (yes, genuinely, and it ain’t Sir Les either) but couldn’t accommodate the very people responsible for the icon that has been travelling the length and breadth of the country for the last seventy days, and will actually be used to ignite the cauldron in the most eagerly-awaited moment in history (those are Nicky Campbell’s words by the way, not mine). Not, that is, until it was blatantly obvious that the organisers were not going to shift all of their £2012 price point tickets, and so decided to give them away to ‘deserving causes’. If I were one of those designers (or the lady responsible for designing the Aquatic Centre who still hasn’t been given her ticket, I believe) I might be just specifying that the best place for those tickets was in a place where the sun doesn’t shine – having been ignited with the torch first.
- Nicholas Wychell stood before Buck House, fawning over the details of the Queen entertaining all of the World’s leaders there prior to the ceremony, and from where they would all be going together in two coaches (the bus type) to the stadium – and of course he was only broadcasting this live to the world and it’s friend, or should that be enemy? I haven’t yet heard whether the whole of Olympic Security has been admitted to hospital with apoplexy, so maybe that just slipped by them unnoticed. Like the Queen with her lighter, or the boy on the Jet2 flight to Rome.
- Sophie Rayworth introducing the One o’clock News from the top of some glass tower in front of the most underwhelming Olympic backdrop I can remember, with the opening words – “and in just a few hours’ time, the stadium behind me will explode into action” Is there no editorial control whatsoever on these people?
I really do hope everything goes well, especially if it shuts those BBC cretins up for a couple of weeks. I would also like to think that I can keep up my entertainment programme for today – exploring long-dormant nooks and crannies of my music collection – over the next two weeks, other than for the obvious iconic moments. But with the sudden appearance of forty, yes forty, different BBC Olympic Channels on my Sky Planner this morning, I fear that may be a forlorn hope.
Hopefully I will be lured by something less banal than yet another new ‘face’ appearing on the screen, standing on a bridge in the Olympic Park, explaining in miniscule detail the fireworks barges on the water behind him, then breathlessly revealing that he had heard the opening music for tonight’s ceremony, but he couldn’t possibly tell us what it was unless he prostrated himself across the top of one of those barges and awaited his fate.
I did think about texting him saying I had already guessed it – “Oh Danny Boyle, the hype, the hype is calling….”