Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Beijing Olympics - Whats it all about?

As a kid I was always fascinated by the Olympics and remember watching bits and pieces from the 84 event in LA. Since then I have not really been to bothered by it all, I catch some tidbits here and there and keep tabs on how well Great Britain and New Zealand are doing in the medals but other than that the interest in not like it used to be. Besides the fact that the Olympics seems to be more about how spectacular the event will be as opposed to mankind playing well together. But two things have stood out for me in this Olympics so far.

Yes that's right only two things and I'm not talking about Michael Phelps record medal tally, or the Jamaican runner Usain Bolt taking the piss out of the hundred metre world record, I'm not even going to mention Janos Baranyai, the poor bastard from Hungary who seemed to snap his arm off while opening a packet of crisps (Not actually what happened).
I am talking about the two athletes from the warring countries of Georgia and Russia who, ironically took out medals in the 10 metre air pistol event. Despite the fact that the Russians have steamrollered their way into Georgia the two women showed what the spirit of the Olympics is all about by hugging and generally getting along. Nino Salukvadze who won the bronze for Georgia had this to say.
"If the world were to draw any lessons from what I did there would never be any wars," she said. "We live in the 21st century, after all. We shouldn't really stoop so low to wage wars against each other."
A great attitude that the leaders of the World should learn from. By the way Russia's Natalia Paderina won the silver. On top of the shooters display of friendship the women's volleyball team showed the World that they are not to happy with the situation at home. Andrezza Chagas and Cristine Santanna of Georgia crossed under the net to hug their Russian competitors, Alexandra Shiryaeva and Natalia Uryadova.
"I am very unsatisfied with the results, but the Georgian team really played well. Their levels are rising very fast recently," said Shiryaeva. "Definitely I hope for peace. We do not want other things to influence the match."
A Russian spectator had this to say.
"The charm of the Games is that before the match you never know who will win. Players of both sides competed in a friendly atmosphere. It was really unforgettable."
The second Olympic moment was truly emotional and came from the German super heavyweight lifter Matthias Steiner. He lost his wife to a car accident last year and promised her memory that he would make it to the Olympics, which he did. Not only did he make the Olympics but he won the gold medal and he was so happy that he jumped around the lifting stage after falling to his knees and thumping the ground. Then as he was receiving his medal he held aloft a picture of his wife. What a dude. Check it (great commentary).

To me this is more amazing than all the world records that fall and the opening ceremony and all the other guff that goes with it. Its the small things that individuals do that make a moment and these two moments are truly memorable.

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Inbetweeners - Ooooh Fwend!!!

In between the 6th form world of bullies and babes lies the Inbetweeners. The Inbetweeners is a show which aired in the UK in May this year and follows the fortunes of Will, Simon, Jay and Neil in their 6th form year at a state run school in England. Will is new to the school after being in private school for most of his school life and is an outcast because of his upper class persona. He soon attaches himself to a small group of lads who are reluctant to accept him because of his background. Needless to say hilarity ensues.

The show follows Will as he goes from outcast to accepted friend and then respected member of the 6th form. During the 6 episode run the four lads try to by alcohol illegally at a pub on the first Friday of the school year. They bunk off school so that they can get drunk on illegally bought alcohol. They go on a day trip to the local theme park after Simon passes his driving test. They fall out when Will gets himself a girlfriend. They go on a caravan holiday after Jay convinces the others that it will be a full on orgy and they have a successful Christmas party organised by Will and co. Throughout the series we get a glimpse of what life is like at a state run school, for me it brought back many memories of hanging out with mates and the problems associated with being a teenager. This program is definitely not a kids show due to the profanities throughout and the many scenes where the boys lust after different girls or proclaim that they want to get laid. In many ways it is like a British version of American Pie or a comedy version of Grange Hill. They have captured the middle class teenage life perfectly and have not straying into the world of drugs. It is a snapshot of teenage life presented it in a wickedly funny way, I can see some of the lines from the show making their way into common use, “Oooh, fwend”.
I am surprised to note that so there has been little backlash from the series due to the depiction of drinking, language and behaviour by minors.

Check out some of the funnier bits here.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Death Star, Star Destroyer ready to demolish San Fran.

I came across a pretty cool video on Giz tonight. It's an apparent invasion by the Empire. Footage looks real to me so if I were you I would lock my doors and not go outside. Check out the vid after the jump for more details.