London’s Last Olympic Night

Last night: My partner heads off to the athletics at the Olympics (the biggest shock; realising that there were lots of events taking place simultaneously in the same stadium) while I make for the National to see ‘London Road’ (the verbatim play about residents who claimed back their street after it had become infamous as […]

The Olympic Seeds of Artistic Change

Outside each of the world’s embassies, people of that particular nationality are picking up daily tickets for their nation’s events. Up in Islington, by the headquarters of the Czechs, this lifesized bit of kinetic art syphons the British Olympic spirit through a particularlu Czech sensibility. The Routemaster bus is still doing push-ups accompanied by a […]

The Mythology of a London Olympics

My friend Jan writes to remind me of a point about the siting of the Olympics that I should have picked up on, as I come from that area. She says; ‘When you think of the history of that particular site – it is essentially Bow Back rivers and its environs – you probably remember […]

Two parts beautiful, one part deranged

Danny Boyle directed the visually astonishing ‘Frankenstein’ at the National Theatre, so he’s used to stitching together a monster from lots of different parts. Even so, the Olympic opening ceremony must have presented a challenge for him. The sublime highs – Isambard Kingdom Brunel directing the forging of the rings in a river of molten […]

Olympiad 2: First Day

Off to a flying start with the visiting Mitt Romney suggesting London’s not ready for the Olympics. Guess who’s now seated right at the back of the world stadium, just like Salt Lake City? Lords turned away Mexican archery fans because the event wasn’t licensed for spectators, fearing a ‘King Harold’ moment. The Taiwan flag […]

Eve of the Olympiad

Not strictly true, as the Olympics already began with Women’s Football in Wales drawing the ‘Who Cares’ card. They managed to project a North Korean flag with South Korean players (or was it the other way around?) and the team walked off – so that’s off to a good start then. But this is England […]

I’m Not With The Brand

If I opened a toy shop selling coloured hoops, could I arrange them in the Olympic symbol without the design police kicking my door in and creating a veritable kristallnacht of my display? I’ve seen some very funny creative ways of avoiding the problem, least of all the range of shirts and bags bearing the […]

Boris Johnson’s Olympic Welcome – Crikey!

Cassetteboy is back, bringing my first laugh-out-loud moment of the day. Well OF COURSE we all hate Sebastian Coe but this is still surreal genius. As is the TV series ‘Twenty Twelve’, which should be a box set.

I Say, Is This Cricket?

Watch those slippery French! Their organisation, the Préparation Olympique et Paralympique, is trying to boost wins via surveillance, under the direction of a man they called the Frog James Bond.The US is also seeking an Olympic edge through stealth; someone from their BMX team surreptitiously rode the competition course in London with a three-dimensional mapping […]

Welcome To The Olympics; Now F**k Off

The Guardian has published an amusing guide to English etiquette for incoming Olympics visitors here. There have also been warnings that Londoners tend to swear a lot. To that advice I can add; Please remember that the word ‘F**k’ is used much as the verb ‘to go’. As in ‘So I f**ked off over the […]