By Eric Schmidt
Aug. 13, 2012
The 2012 Olympic Games have drawn to a close. In a blink of an eye, 17 days passed and now the world looks towards the 2014 Winter Olympics. This year, as in each Olympic Games, we were treated to some phenomenal athletes, extraordinary performances and we were moved by the stories which we learned about the obstacles that individuals had to overcome in order to reach for their dreams of reaching the greatest athletic stage.
Here at Thepigskinreport.com, we discussed covering the Olympics on our site, but eventually came to the conclusion that with the time difference, and the variety of sports which we are not knowledgeable about, we would not cover the games. I’ll sum up the coverage of the last 17 days for you at this point. The United States kicked the world’s ass, taking home the most medals, along with the most gold and silver medals. You won’t find political correctness in this column, I’m very proud of my country.
What I am curious about the Olympics is, the opening and closing ceremonies of the games. The opening ceremony was a celebration of socialism in one of the most blatant political statements I’ve ever seen in an Olympic event in my life. England was wonderful when it was an agricultural nation and then the industrial revolution brought greed, enslaved women and workers and socialized medicine is the best thing England has to showcase in the last 100 years. I seriously doubt that.
What I found odd about the opening and closing ceremonies of these games was the tribute to the music history of England. Amid the towering smokestacks and the children jumping on illuminated hospital beds in the opening ceremony, a tribute was paid to English music. During the closing ceremony, which resembled a glorified Super Bowl halftime show, more tributes were given to English musicians. Not one song, not even 10 seconds of a song by Elton John was played during the opening or closing of the games. Why?
During the closing ceremony, the world was treated to The Pet Shop Boys, Madness, Kaiser Chiefs and DJ FatBoy Slim. I think FatBoy Slim might actually be Colin Cowherd from ESPN, I’m going to have to check in and see if he shows up for work in the morning. Annie Lennox was a feature tonight, and I sincerely enjoy her voice. I also could have gone the rest of my life without a Spice Girls reunion, but there it was, for the world to see.
So, hours in the opening and closing ceremonies dedicated to English music and not one single mention of Elton John. It wasn’t a homophobic ceremony, as George Michael performed and a tribute to the band Queen was played. Even a Russel Brand played a set illustrating the “British individuality and Free Spirited-ness” as described by Ryan Seacrest. Twenty seconds of an Elton song couldn’t be incorporated into that section of the ceremony?
I believe this all comes down to politics. According to the UK Sun newspaper, the band Muse reported this week that they would be performing a song for the closing of the games, claiming that Elton John was the director of music for the Olympics. John has been embroiled in a feud once again in recent weeks with Madonna and most recently has sued The Times newspaper of London, but these events surfaced recently and would have had no effect on his participation in the games ceremonies.
There is much more going on behind the scenes than this and I feel bad for Sir Elton John. He is obviously one of my favorite artists, but despite whatever rifts came between him and the organizers of the opening and closing events, at least 20 seconds of one of his dozens of hits could have been incorporated into the show. He is a music legend and will always be a part of the English music landscape. Another example of how politicized the opening and closing ceremonies of these games became.
Thankfully, the 2012 games went off without any major event impeding the games and I am looking forward to the 2016 games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In my protest, I’ll just slip in my Elton John’s Greatest hits CD tonight and listen to a few tracks.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Eric Schmidt is owner of ThePigskinReport.com, the most Hyped site on BallHyped.com.
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