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Friday, July 27, 2012

OT: London Olympics Thread

A place to discuss sports that no one cares about for 3.9 years at a time.  Swimming, track, basketball, gymnastics, soccer, whatever.  I like ‘em obscure.

Team Handball: Can France (m) defend their gold?  Can South Korea (w) break the Northern European dominance of the sport?
Fencing: Can the US Women sweep the saber medals again?  How much fencing can I watch online before I realize I’m wasting my life?
Canoe Slalom: Can David Florence bring back gold for Great Britain in this, the greatest and most traditional of all summer olympic competitions?

And more!

Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 27, 2012 at 12:21 PM | 1691 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: olympics

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   101. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 03:50 PM (#4193963)
NBC will have essentially everything live either on TV or online with the exception of opening and closing ceremonies, but if you watch events online you might not get all of the bells and whistles (the lines for World Records, in some cases announcers, etc.)
   102. Ebessan Posted: July 27, 2012 at 03:50 PM (#4193964)
As a cycling fan, I care deeply about the Olympic road race, because it's usually the weirdest race of the year and it never benefits riders good at one particular style (sprinting, climbing, time-trialing, attacking) over another. This year's course has too long of a late flat drag to the line which will benefit the sprinters, and coincidentally, the best sprinter in the world is British. And has the top two in the Tour de France as teammates. They're also his pro teammates and will drag him up the climbs. I'm prepared for an anticlimax.

...that weird cycling thing where they go as slow as they can until the last lap sprint.

The keirin is totally hypnotizing. It's basically all mental and about not cracking and crashing as the pace increases and the sprint hits. Regardless, I prefer the endurance track events, which have all been squeezed into a decathlon-esque medal event, which is annoying. And cross-country mountain biking is really boring, unfortunately.
   103. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: July 27, 2012 at 03:58 PM (#4193971)
Showtime!
   104. phredbird Posted: July 27, 2012 at 03:59 PM (#4193973)
i know i sound like an old curmudgeon, but the only thing i like about the olympics is the track and field events ... i don't even want to see basketball. and forget about stupid sh - t like synchronized swimming.
   105. Ben Broussard Ramjet Posted: July 27, 2012 at 03:59 PM (#4193974)
Wow, I would watch some jousting.


As long as they have to ride ostriches, and jump on platforms, and avoid falling in a fiery pit - sure.
   106. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:00 PM (#4193977)
It'll be interesting to see what ends up being better: the ceremony in my head while I read about it, or the actual thing that NBC airs on delay.
   107. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:04 PM (#4193981)
Can I post highlights from the Opening Ceremony as I watch? Or would that be too spoiler-y?
   108. zonk Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:10 PM (#4193983)
You guys all realize that that they're not taking baseball back unless we punish them, right?

How will the IOC ever be made to cow to the pressure of baseball fans if the immortal primates still give the summer games an OT-thread?
   109. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:11 PM (#4193985)
Showtime!


I'm hoping to see Spinal Tap perform "Stonehenge"
   110. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:12 PM (#4193986)
How will the IOC ever be made to cow to the pressure of baseball fans if the immortal primates still give the summer games an OT-thread?



Once we get enough bribe money, they will. IOC loves bribe money.
   111. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:16 PM (#4193991)
Oh, if anybody IS watching a live stream, just let me know if, indeed, James Bond shows up and if, indeed, the Doctor Who theme is played. Don't know if the second part of that would show up on Twitter.
   112. Copronymus Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:19 PM (#4193997)
In case anyone would like a preview of every single event: the Olympic Prospectus. It's delightfully wonky and probably the only place you'll hear about judo unless an American unexpectedly medals.

I'd also like to give another shoutout to the Modern Pentathlon, because it's a weird attempt to recreate a 19th century calvary officer's escape from a prison camp. You fight one guard with a sword, shoot another, steal a horse (seriously, it's in the rules that the horse has to be unfamiliar to you), run once you have to leave the horse behind, and finally you swim to safety.
   113. Yonder Alonso in misguided trousers (cardinal) Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:23 PM (#4194001)
I'd also like to give another shoutout to the Modern Pentathlon, because it's a weird attempt to recreate a 19th century calvary officer's escape from a prison camp. You fight one guard with a sword, shoot another, steal a horse (seriously, it's in the rules that the horse has to be unfamiliar to you), run once you have to leave the horse behind, and finally you swim to safety.


Really, they should just recreate that as closely as possible then. Do it all in one go.
   114. Swedish Chef Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:25 PM (#4194002)
I'd also like to give another shoutout to the Modern Pentathlon, because it's a weird attempt to recreate a 19th century calvary officer's escape from a prison camp. You fight one guard with a sword, shoot another, steal a horse (seriously, it's in the rules that the horse has to be unfamiliar to you), run once you have to leave the horse behind, and finally you swim to safety.

Also, George S. Patton competed in the Pentathlon in the 1912 Olympics in Stockholm.
   115. Swedish Chef Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:26 PM (#4194005)
Really, they should just recreate that as closely as possible then. Do it all in one go.

Shooting at a live target might be a smidgen controversial though.
   116. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:26 PM (#4194007)
Oh, if anybody IS watching a live stream, just let me know if, indeed, James Bond shows up and if, indeed, the Doctor Who theme is played. Don't know if the second part of that would show up on Twitter.
Bond just showed.
   117. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:26 PM (#4194009)
Also, George S. Patton competed in the Pentathlon in the 1912 Olympics in Stockholm.


He would have medaled too if he didn't completely miss one of his shots. Legend says he actually got another bulls-eye, but that the bullet went through a pre-existing hole.
   118. just plain joe Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:37 PM (#4194017)
Same here, most likely.


Me too, I think the opening ceremonies might be the best part of the entire festival. I especially like watching the pure joy on the faces of the competitors from the smaller countries. You just know, in many cases, this is their opportunity for the "big time" and they are happy to be there; good luck to them. Oh, and I like to watch the marathons as well; I find it interesting as the cameras follow the runners through the streets and we get to see different parts of the host city.
   119. Yonder Alonso in misguided trousers (cardinal) Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:40 PM (#4194018)
Really, they should just recreate that as closely as possible then. Do it all in one go.

Shooting at a live target might be a smidgen controversial though.


Make it one of those moving cutouts in police training courses, or something.
   120. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:41 PM (#4194019)
My current experience of the opening ceremony is seeing a dozen or so British people competing on Twitter to see who can mock it in the most dismissive and scornful fashion. Probably Gold Star - just Gold Star's running checklist of highlights would be better than that, but instead I think I'll just avoid the internet until 7:30.
   121. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:43 PM (#4194022)
Gold Star's running checklist of highlights
Pink Floyd/Battersea reference.
J.K. Rowling reading from "Peter Pan."
Forging the Olympic rings....
   122. Delino DeShields & Yarnell Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:45 PM (#4194024)
Can I post highlights from the Opening Ceremony as I watch? Or would that be too spoiler-y?
Let us know if the Americans dip the flag toward the host. They have not done so since 1936.
   123. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:49 PM (#4194030)
Let us know if the Americans dip the flag toward the host. They have not done so since 1936.


Since BEFORE 1936. And before that it was only done sporadically.
   124. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:53 PM (#4194033)
This is a very funny Opening Ceremonies.
   125. Ben Broussard Ramjet Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:53 PM (#4194034)
Ah, occasionally my Twitter feed is a wonderful thing. Warren Ellis: "The Queen has summoned the armed forces and is announcing that everyone in the stadium must die to activate the hidden gods of Albion."
   126. Ben Broussard Ramjet Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:54 PM (#4194036)
And The Bugle: "London Symphony Orchestra to saxe out some chops. Any guesses what? (a) Chariots of Fire. Correct, it is (a)"
   127. vortex of dissipation Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:56 PM (#4194037)
Let us know if the Americans dip the flag toward the host. They have not done so since 1936.


That's just being rude...
   128. Swedish Chef Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:56 PM (#4194038)
"The Queen has summoned the armed forces and is announcing that everyone in the stadium must die to activate the hidden gods of Albion."

You have to put a spoiler warning there.... This slaughter don't work half as well if the shock factor is gone.
   129. Ben Broussard Ramjet Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:58 PM (#4194039)
You have to put a spoiler warning there.... This slaughter don't work half as well if the shock factor is gone.


I imagine most of the attendees saw the giant wicker man on their way in and drew their own conclusions. "As long as we get to queue for a while, we'll put up with anything. Ooh! And could there be drizzle, too?"
   130. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:00 PM (#4194041)
The Brit music montage is phenomenal.
   131. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:01 PM (#4194043)
That's just being rude...


"This flag dips for no earthly king."

Apparently nobody ever said it, but it worked so well with the American exceptionalism of the time that it kind of has stuck. It's even in the flag code, I believe.
   132. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:11 PM (#4194047)
My fellow Primates, please watch the Opening Ceremonies. It's... amazing. With Trainspotting.
   133. Random Transaction Generator Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:13 PM (#4194048)
The Brit music montage is phenomenal.

Agreed.

I was disappointed we wouldn't see the insane choreography of Beijing, but this has been VERY entertaining.
   134. Tom Nawrocki Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:14 PM (#4194049)
The coolest part was when the Queen parachuted into the stadium.

At least I think that's what happened; from the way the entrance was directed and shot, it was a little tough to tell.
   135. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:18 PM (#4194051)
At least I think that's what happened; from the way the entrance was directed and shot, it was a little tough to tell.
Concur. That was oddly choreographed.
   136. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:19 PM (#4194052)
I just set my Tivo to record the opening ceremonies.

In the program listings, the show is called "XXX Summer Olympics". Really NBC? You had no one look that over and say, wait a minute?

Or perhaps it will all make sense when I watch the opening ceremonies?
   137. Delino DeShields & Yarnell Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:22 PM (#4194054)
"This flag dips for no earthly king."

Not dipping is not good enough. We should hurl our flag at the host nation's leader and attempt to impale him/her on it.
   138. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:23 PM (#4194056)

Not dipping is not good enough. We should hurl our flag at the host nation's leader and attempt to impale him/her on it.


"We need to test to make sure you are earthly, Your Highness."



(First joke that popped in my head)
   139. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:29 PM (#4194059)
In the program listings, the show is called "XXX Summer Olympics".


Suddenly I'm reconsidering my decision not to watch!
   140. Random Transaction Generator Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:46 PM (#4194070)
Oh, Canada. Why do we have to be so insecure in our national identity that we need to have our nations name in BIG bold letters across the front of our parade outfits?
Or is just an extension of the rules of travelling in Europe, where you show a Canadian pin/patch so they don't think you're American?

   141. booond Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:46 PM (#4194071)
boond

nope. the equestrian events go over a good many days. check out the nbc tv schedule. and the cross country course is spread out over hill and dale

equestrian events have a passtionate global following.


I wasn't questioning the popularity of the event just that fewer tickets had to be sold. From my calculations of stadium size, number of events and number of sessions (Swimming and Athletics have two sessions a day) ticket sales are:

Equestrian - 250k - 300k (I used 50k for cross country but it could be a few more)
Swimming - 250k - 300k
Athletics - 1.45mm (this does not include either marathon which are free to view)

BTW, you horsey people are very sensitive.
   142. Guapo Posted: July 27, 2012 at 05:50 PM (#4194073)
In case anyone would like a preview of every single event: the Olympic Prospectus.


Cease and desist letter in 3.... 2.... 1....
   143. rfloh Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:07 PM (#4194084)
" Crispix Attacks Posted: July 27, 2012 at 04:41 PM (#4194019)
My current experience of the opening ceremony is seeing a dozen or so British people competing on Twitter to see who can mock it in the most dismissive and scornful fashion. Probably Gold Star - just Gold Star's running checklist of highlights would be better than that, but instead I think I'll just avoid the internet until 7:30. "

I'm seeing quite some Brit tweeps express their pride in the ceremony.
   144. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:13 PM (#4194089)
I'm seeing quite some Brit tweeps express their pride in the ceremony.



Maybe the Brits he's reading are all English and it's the Scots, Welsh and North Irish making fun of it, or something.
   145. vortex of dissipation Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:16 PM (#4194091)
Maybe it's just the Scots, Welsh and North Irish making fun of it, or something, and the only Brits Crispix has seen have been English.


Several of my English relatives have been commenting on FB, and the reaction from them is uniformly positive.
   146. rfloh Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:16 PM (#4194092)
I don't understand why some people can't understand wrestling, IMHO, the scoring can be picked up pretty quickly. But that might due to my being friends back in college with guys on the wrestling team, and being friends with a guy who used to coach the team, and often talking weightlifting and wrestling with him.

Obviously fencing isn't like actual swordfighting, since in actual swordfighting, you don't get "touched", you get poked full of holes, or you get muscles cut, or bones broken. As for the armour stuff, heavy armour is actually overrated, unless you can pick when you fight, and you have someone else to haul around the armour. Try marching for a full day with a suit up of armour, weighing at least 50 pounds, in hot weather, then having to fight. You don't get to take the armour off, you don't get to put it down. Even sitting down with it is a pain, since you then have to get up. Whatever the protection the armour gives you, it detracts in the form of exhaustion. You can try this if you join the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism, basically for medieval fantasy geeks).
   147. rfloh Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:19 PM (#4194093)
"Maybe the Brits he's reading are all English and it's the Scots, Welsh and North Irish making fun of it, or something."

The Brits I'm following, who are expressing pride are Welsh, English, Scots, American immigrants, Canadian immigrants.
   148. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:30 PM (#4194099)
I think that to appreciate fencing, you have to first divorce it from actual swordfighting or SCA medieval geekery.

It's a sport, one that involves:

-a particular field (the strip, long and thin)
-a particular implement (a foil, epee, or saber)
-a simple scoring system (if you hit the right part of the other person with the right part of your weapon, you get a point - a "touch")
-a set of rules governing infractions, for which can be given yellow, red, and black cards

The scoring system breaks down further as follows:

-in epee, you have to hit with the point of the weapon, and you can score a touch anywhere on your opponent's body, from their feet to their head
-in foil, you have to hit with the point of the weapon, but you only score a touch by hitting them on the torso
-in saber, you can hit with the point or the side of the weapon, and you can only score a touch by hitting them above the waist
-in epee, if you both hit each other at the same time, you both score a touch
-in foil and saber, if both people hit each other at the same time, the one who had "priority" on attack gets the touch
-"priority" is determined either (a) by starting to attack before the other fencer, or (b) parrying the other fencers attack by blocking their weapon with yours, or by moving out of distance and having their attack fall short)

This doesn't resemble a swordfight much at all, but it does create a sport with a wonderful combination of athleticism and creativity. You have to be very fast, and flexibility helps a lot, but you also need to attack where they don't expect, vary your movement, and find creative ways to get into or out of space to score a touch.

I'm really looking forward to watching the fencing on streaming. I was never good (made it to the NCAA regional finals as a senior, but that's less impressive than it sounds, and I got really lucky, then came in 12th out of 12), but I really loved the sport.
   149. rfloh Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:39 PM (#4194102)
"Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:30 PM (#4194099)
I think that to appreciate fencing, you have to first divorce it from actual swordfighting or SCA medieval geekery."

I enjoy, and dabble in, fencing AND SCA medieval geekery. My interest in one feeds my interest in the other.

"This doesn't resemble a swordfight much at all, but it does create a sport with a wonderful combination of athleticism and creativity. Y"

I don't have a problem at all with it not resembling a real swordfight, to be clear. And actually, it isn't a bad representation of a real swordfight, towards the later part of how real swordfighting developed, ie away from heavy armour and heavy swords that were primarily used for as clubbing weapons than as poke holes in the opponent weapons, towards light, yet strong, swords that were used as poke holes in the opponent weapons. Heavy armour and heavy swords are not all that useful, if you can barely move because you are exhausted from hauling that armour all over the place, and your opponent is poking holes into you with his light yet strong sword.
   150. Swedish Chef Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:39 PM (#4194103)
Try marching for a full day with a suit up of armour, weighing at least 50 pounds, in hot weather, then having to fight. You don't get to take the armour off, you don't get to put it down. Even sitting down with it is a pain, since you then have to get up. Whatever the protection the armour gives you, it detracts in the form of exhaustion.

A fitted suit of armor doesn't feel heavy as the weight is distributed evenly, it just makes you move slower. As for the worth of protection, I don't think the Hospitaller Knights at the siege of Malta 1565 would have given up their armor even though it must be hellish to fight in one during an Mediterranean summer. They could feel pretty safe in their armor as long as they didn't get separated and surrounded or dehydrated.

Also, if you can afford a suit of armor you don't march, you ride.

You can try this if you join the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism, basically for medieval fantasy geeks).

They don't actually try to kill you in the SCA.
   151. rfloh Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:52 PM (#4194116)
"A fitted suit of armor doesn't feel heavy as the weight is distributed evenly, it just makes you move slower. As for the worth of protection, I don't think the Hospitaller Knights at the siege of Malta 1565 would have given up their armor even though it must be hellish to fight in one during an Mediterranean summer. They could feel pretty safe in their armor as long as they didn't get separated and surrounded or dehydrated."

Uh, it makes you move slower BECAUSE it is heavy, regardless of how it "feels". That it makes you slower is PRECISELY the point. Heavy armour is useful, IF you can pick your fights, and your opponents are using inferior weapons, weapons that cannot pierce the armour. And even heavy armour has joints where you can be pireced.

"Also, if you can afford a suit of armor you don't march, you ride."

Yes, and you sometimes will need someone to help you get onto that horse, if you are hauling around at least 50 pounds of extra weight. And that extra weight will tire your horse out too, since that horse is a living thing, not a car. Which means you might need a spare horse.

"They don't actually try to kill you in the SCA."

No they don't. You do however get to march around in heavy armour for a whole day, in hot and humid summer weather. Try it, before you say that "it doesn't feel heavy, it just makes you slower".
   152. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:58 PM (#4194120)
Nice shot of the Queen picking her nails.
   153. vortex of dissipation Posted: July 27, 2012 at 06:58 PM (#4194121)
We can be heroes, just for one day.
   154. frannyzoo Posted: July 27, 2012 at 07:17 PM (#4194135)
From stories told by friends/acquaintances in SCA, it appears the organization is one of those insidious plots by the sports medicine industry, knee surgeons particularly. Great idea to get the non-skiing, mead-drinking body type folks wearing heavy armor and bouncing around. Of the few I know who've participated, every one still wears some sort of knee brace, all the time.
   155. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: July 27, 2012 at 07:22 PM (#4194140)
We can be heroes, just for one day.


Interesting that they used mostly, if not all British (or commonwealth*) bands as background music for the parade of nations, but switched to an American band for Team GB.

* I liked how they switched to the Bee Gee's when Fiji was announced. Nice bit of drollery.
   156. zonk Posted: July 27, 2012 at 07:27 PM (#4194142)
In the program listings, the show is called "XXX Summer Olympics".



Suddenly I'm reconsidering my decision not to watch!


Why is Comcast charging me $9.95 to watch the Olympics?

I've found it thus far to be somewhat exciting, very exciting, VERY exciting.... and then I lost all interest.
   157. vortex of dissipation Posted: July 27, 2012 at 07:30 PM (#4194150)
Interesting that they used mostly, if not all British (or commonwealth*) bands as background music for the parade of nations, but switched to an American band for Team GB.


David Bowie is British.
   158. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: July 27, 2012 at 07:36 PM (#4194155)
Was Juninho covering behind Beckham's boat in case he turned the torch over?
   159. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 07:44 PM (#4194163)
Well, it's Tape Delay time!
   160. Misirlou is on hiding to nowhere Posted: July 27, 2012 at 07:46 PM (#4194165)
David Bowie is British.


I thought that was the Wallflowers.

edit: Nevermind, I'm an idiot. Don't know what I was thinking.

edit, edit: OK, I'm not totally crazy, as the Wallflowers did cover it.
   161. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 08:46 PM (#4194199)
I applaud the awesome amount of hallucinogens the entire United Kingdom seems to be on every day.
   162. rfloh Posted: July 27, 2012 at 08:50 PM (#4194201)
". Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 08:46 PM (#4194199)
I applaud the awesome amount of hallucinogens the entire United Kingdom seems to be on every day.
"

When it has fecking rained everyday for the whole fecking summer, until this week, what else to do, but be on hallucinogens.
   163. Gamingboy Posted: July 27, 2012 at 09:05 PM (#4194218)
I mean, as far as I can tell, only Japan has a more obviously LSD-influenced pop culture.
   164. vortex of dissipation Posted: July 27, 2012 at 09:19 PM (#4194233)
I mean, as far as I can tell, only Japan has a more obviously LSD-influenced pop culture.


If you've never seen this, it's mind-boggling.
   165. JJ1986 Posted: July 27, 2012 at 09:20 PM (#4194236)
This is so stupid. They have cut away from the ceremony to interview Michael Phelps.
   166. Bhaakon Posted: July 27, 2012 at 09:31 PM (#4194249)
If you've never seen this, it's mind-boggling.


I can't keep my eyes off the severed unicorn head. It's hypnotic.
   167. Ron J Posted: July 27, 2012 at 10:45 PM (#4194286)
The coolest part was when the Queen parachuted into the stadium.


The funny thing is that I can totally see here saying, "If you're quite sure ..."
   168. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: July 27, 2012 at 10:47 PM (#4194287)
That opening ceremony was gloriously British. Following up Beijing was an impossible task, and I appreciate how Boyle approached it. The digital era bit felt long, but otherwise good show.

NBC needs better prep for the march of nations. Some really dumb comments that made me, as an American, facepalm.

WOO OLYMPICS!
   169. Ron J Posted: July 27, 2012 at 10:51 PM (#4194288)
#146 I'm a long-time fan of Peter O'Donnel. In one of the Modesty Blaise books (A Taste For Death) she takes fencing lessons from a master but has a great deal of problems with the notion that it doesn't matter if the other guy hits you after you scored. (And of course later ends up fighting a fencing master to the death)
   170. I am going to be Frank Posted: July 27, 2012 at 11:59 PM (#4194309)
Well that was a bit trippy. I've never been a Beatles or McCartney fan, but I guess you have to put him in there.
   171. Bob Meta-Meusel Posted: July 28, 2012 at 12:25 AM (#4194321)
I still think that during the parade of nations, Great Britain should have marched in to Rule Britannia.

Ok, sure, it would have offended most of the former colonies, but it would have been lots of fun.
   172. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: July 28, 2012 at 12:44 AM (#4194326)
Rule Britannia might have my favorite lyrics of any patriotic song anywhere, even more than La Marseillaise.
   173. Swedish Chef Posted: July 28, 2012 at 03:33 AM (#4194361)
Ok, sure, it would have offended most of the former colonies, but it would have been lots of fun.

That's nothing compared to how much it would have offended US Navy.
   174. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: July 28, 2012 at 05:56 AM (#4194369)
NBC's online coverage is excellent, except that occasionally when you open a new feed it makes you verify your cable tv provider again. I'm gorging on a buffet of different sports, but I still don't get dressage.
   175. Everybody Loves Tyrus Raymond Posted: July 28, 2012 at 06:38 AM (#4194372)
In the program listings, the show is called "XXX Summer Olympics"


You won't want to miss the pole vault.
   176. Gamingboy Posted: July 28, 2012 at 06:58 AM (#4194375)
Been watching a variety of sports this morning, both on TV and online. Kind of surprising, though, that Phelps JUST BARELY made it to the 400 IM Medley final. He either isn't feeling so good or vastly overestimated how much he could coast in the heats.


China won the first gold of the games in rifle shooting. China really just loads up on shooting, diving, weightlifting, table tennis and badminton medals, it seems. Not like the old Cold War days where USA and USSR were really going head to head in events. Only time NBC gets to play up the rivalry aspect between USA and China is in Gymnastics and some of the women's swimming races.
   177. bunyon Posted: July 28, 2012 at 07:19 AM (#4194379)
I liked the show. I thought the commentators, including Costas, were as bad as I've ever heard. I can only hope very few people outside the US heard any of it.
   178. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: July 28, 2012 at 07:26 AM (#4194381)
Nice to see MCA is a fencer too. I thought I was alone. Keep an eye on Race.Imboden, USAs first competitive foilist in 100 years.
   179. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 28, 2012 at 08:28 AM (#4194390)
WJ - cool, I'll have to check that out. I fenced foil, so it's still my favorites to watch. Though saber really works better on tv, I think. What did you fence?

(Also, sadly, was a fencer. I fenced at an alumni meet over five years ago, that was the last time.)
   180. BFFB Posted: July 28, 2012 at 08:58 AM (#4194396)
The Olympics is certainly something best experienced far away, on TV rather than up close. I can't watch any of the events without feeling my piss begin to boil because of the associated crap like their "Zil" lanes on the roads which make my commute into work a ####### nightmare.
   181. Ron J Posted: July 28, 2012 at 09:10 AM (#4194398)
#180 My mother and sister went to the games in Australia. Had no real problems getting around, though they had the "advantage" that my mother qualified as handicapped (70 years old, needing a knee replaced). Apparently the buses pretty much stopped where she wanted, picked her up where she wanted and got good seats. (I wonder if this excellent treatment impacted the locals)

They did however say that the local TV coverage gave the distinct impression that it was an Australian event with one or two foreigners brought in to make up the numbers.

   182. Swedish Chef Posted: July 28, 2012 at 09:12 AM (#4194399)
In the cycling, the breakaway group will be reeled in soon, in what other sport can it be good policy to spot a bunch of guys a six minute lead?
   183. Fancy Pants Handle doesn't need no water Posted: July 28, 2012 at 09:46 AM (#4194409)
In the cycling, the breakaway group will be reeled in soon, in what other sport can it be good policy to spot a bunch of guys a six minute lead?

Pretty much any event that is primarily an endurance event, I would think.
   184. rfloh Posted: July 28, 2012 at 09:47 AM (#4194410)
"China won the first gold of the games in rifle shooting. China really just loads up on shooting, diving, weightlifting, table tennis and badminton medals, it seems. Not like the old Cold War days where USA and USSR were really going head to head in events. Only time NBC gets to play up the rivalry aspect between USA and China is in Gymnastics and some of the women's swimming races."

Not really. In weightlifting at least, the Chinese are at their weakest in maybe more than 10 years, the women especially look weaker than they have been in a long time; the only Chinese woman lifter who is odds on favourite for gold is Wang Ming Juan in the 48s. They are basically rebuilding. Their target was 2008, many of their greats, both the men and wonem, multiple Olympic golds / WRs types, retired after 2008. Weightlifting this time around should be China vs Russia vs Kazakhstan vs Iran (though none of the best from each of these 4 countries generally are in the same weight class, directly competing with each other), with some lifters from Turkey, Vietnam, Poland, Belarus, Armenia, S Korea, N Korea, maybe Japan, added.

As for badminton, they do have some rivalry with some of the SE / E Asian (Indonesia, Malaysia, S Korea) countries, and Denmark, it is just that some of those countries, for example Indonesia, have fallen off a bit / somewhat recently, for various reasons.
   185. Swedish Chef Posted: July 28, 2012 at 10:03 AM (#4194413)
Pretty much any event that is primarily an endurance event, I would think.

But can it be an endurance event when the hot favorites are the sprinters? :-)
   186. Gamingboy Posted: July 28, 2012 at 10:35 AM (#4194427)
It seems anybody's race in the road race (is there a women's road race?). Basically every major cycling country is in it, one or two crashes have thinned the ranks, and the British seem to have semi-disappeared.
   187. Lassus Posted: July 28, 2012 at 11:01 AM (#4194443)
This stupid all-nil Brazil/New Zealand soccer match is going to delay my table tennis coverage!
   188. frannyzoo Posted: July 28, 2012 at 11:06 AM (#4194446)
Team handball is perfect for those who feel there's not enough scoring in soccer. The penalty throw needs work though. The success rate is darn close to 100% and it's just sad watching the goalie trying silly calisthenics in lame attempts to "psyche" out the thrower.
   189. booond Posted: July 28, 2012 at 11:24 AM (#4194453)
China really just loads up on shooting, diving, weightlifting, table tennis and badminton medals


China has made attempts at Track and Field, especially women's long distances, but were caught cheating.

Swimming is where you can pile up medals as a swimmer, like Phelps, can dominate multiple events. A team with a great foursome can haul in a pile of medals in swimming.
   190. Lassus Posted: July 28, 2012 at 11:28 AM (#4194455)
The angle at which they are showing this match is poor.
   191. JJ1986 Posted: July 28, 2012 at 11:48 AM (#4194461)
The North Korean table tennis player is incredible.
   192. I am going to be Frank Posted: July 28, 2012 at 11:53 AM (#4194463)
Ok the bows in archery are a little ridiculous.

How is the US not dominant at all the shooting events? Is it because ammunition is so cheap that we don't need to be that accurate? Sorry, that was purely a joke - I do not want to turn this into some sort of political thread.
   193. Kurt Posted: July 28, 2012 at 12:04 PM (#4194468)
This US/Croatia WBB game is just brutally bad.
   194. Lassus Posted: July 28, 2012 at 12:17 PM (#4194474)
The North Korean table tennis player is incredible.

The US kid was completely twisted and nervous also.
   195. hokieneer Posted: July 28, 2012 at 12:24 PM (#4194477)
How is the US not dominant at all the shooting events? Is it because ammunition is so cheap that we don't need to be that accurate? Sorry, that was purely a joke - I do not want to turn this into some sort of political thread.


I know your post was just a joke, but the US does have a big influence over international shooting, even if our shooters are not that dominate.

For example, WVU has 5 current or former shooters/coaches from their school team (regularly one of the best in the NCAA) competing in London. 2 of those shooters are Italian born, one is Scotish, and I think one is Swiss. WVU's current team also has members from Poland and Estonia. WVU has recruited almost all of it's talent from Europe over the years, and I would imagine other top shooting programs are similar.

Seems the world class shooters like to come to the US to train/compete; but obviously compete for their home country in the Olympics.
   196. Monty Predicts a Padres-Mariners WS in 2016 Posted: July 28, 2012 at 12:31 PM (#4194480)
I'd also like to give another shoutout to the Modern Pentathlon, because it's a weird attempt to recreate a 19th century calvary officer's escape from a prison camp. You fight one guard with a sword, shoot another, steal a horse (seriously, it's in the rules that the horse has to be unfamiliar to you), run once you have to leave the horse behind, and finally you swim to safety.


Also the shooting now uses a laser gun. It's controversial, but it does make it more "Modern".
   197. Gamingboy Posted: July 28, 2012 at 12:31 PM (#4194481)
I have to think that the reason the USA isn't dominant is because, presumably, firing a air-gun or whatever is different than firing a hunting rifle or a Glock or whatever.

Do have to wonder why the USOC doesn't try to start some sort of recruiting drive at police departments, gun clubs and the military. As it stands, I think a lot of US sport shooters are either current or ex military.


Also, I have to say that watching archery on TV is sort of like the world's most suspenseful game of Battleship. Which is.... oddly entertaining, in a strange way.
   198. hokieneer Posted: July 28, 2012 at 12:40 PM (#4194483)
I have to think that the reason the USA isn't dominant is because, presumably, firing a air-gun or whatever is different than firing a hunting rifle or a Glock or whatever.


There is also skeet & trap shooting events, and I assume they still do the rapid fire pistol event. The Olympics also have non-air rifle/pistol events, that are at a longer range than the air alternative.

EDIT: Even the non-air rifle/pistol used in shooting competitions are still a lot different than firing a civilian hunting rifle or a police/military issue weapon.
   199. rfloh Posted: July 28, 2012 at 12:41 PM (#4194484)
"For example, WVU has 5 current or former shooters/coaches from their school team (regularly one of the best in the NCAA) competing in London. 2 of those shooters are Italian born, one is Scotish, and I think one is Swiss. WVU's current team also has members from Poland and Estonia. WVU has recruited almost all of it's talent from Europe over the years, and I would imagine other top shooting programs are similar.

Seems the world class shooters like to come to the US to train/compete; but obviously compete for their home country in the Olympics."

Not surprising. US unis offer full ride scholarships to athletes all over the world, in a whole bunch of sports. So those athletes accept those scholarships and study and train in the US.
   200. I am going to be Frank Posted: July 28, 2012 at 12:44 PM (#4194486)
I know a lot of foreign Olympic athletes come to the US for college. I know Michigan has in the past had a lot of swimmers and I'm sure there are plenty of Stanford athletes. Especially in women's sports, there has to been plenty of basketball, soccer, field hockey and volleyball players that take advantage of US atheletic scholarships. The commentators were mentioning during the archery competition that all the US competitors were bow hunters (and fishers which makes sense but didn't know that was a thing). There is no "gun culture" in China so I find it strange that there are no good US shooters.

Ok, the biggest difference between the men and women's soccer is the goalkeeping.
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