Watching the torch come by work was cooler than I expected. Mostly because of the very enthusiastic response from the international students. And really, that's a pretty neat experience to have when you're living abroad! It was interesting to be part of that. (Though I do suspect that some of their enthusiasm was also for not being in grammar class...)
I will confess to watching - and even enjoying - the opening ceremonies. Yes, there was cheesiness. And Nelly Furtado's outfit looked uncomfortably like my prom dress. Also, I'm not quite sure what sparkly Bear-Zilla was all about...that was a little strange. (Yes, I get the Spirit Bear thing - but I know I'm not the only person who saw it coming up out of the floor and thought of Godzilla rising out of the ocean.)
However, I was willing to suspend my cynicism and enjoy the spectacle, right about the time I realized that the huge circle between the welcoming poles was a drum. And then all those dancers started coming out, and it just got way cool.
I loved that there was a spontaneous standing ovation for the Georgian athletes. I loved that there was a punk fiddler and a slam poet. I loved that Julie Payette was a flag-bearer, that Rick Hansen was part of the flame-lighting. I thought the stage-design was awesome, for the most part, and may have squee-ed when, at one point, the set looked like a giant Emily Carr painting.
And k.d. lang singing "Hallelujah" in bare feet...was just about enough to make me consider switching teams. I melted.
(But - what the heck was with Gretzky riding in the back of the truck like that? I mean, dude! Were you not just in the stadium with Rick Hansen? How do you think he ended up in that wheelchair?!)
Anyway, as the 2010 Winter Games open, it's kind of amusing that it looks like this on the streets of the host city:
Welcome to the Vancouver Winter Olympics, ladies and gents! Being the one city in Canada that doesn't get winter! Doh! Still, it looks pretty cool around here, and we will go out and enjoy some of the free events, check out some of the pavilions and such. (As one of the anti-Olympics protest organizers said - we are paying for it, we might as well enjoy what we can!)
(Which organizers are not to be confused with the hooligans smashing shit up downtown yesterday. Tres uncool! But that's a rant for another day.)
Olympics aside, however, Friday also marked the start of the Real Winter Games: the 2010 Ravelympics. In which I am, of course, competing! See this?
Hasn't been touched in a year. Time to do something about it! There may also be a bit of frogging in the near future, on several half-finished socks that are never going get finished. Sitting on the couch Friday night, glass of mead close by & some maple tarts waiting for dessert...it was pretty awesome when I picked up my needles to start, and realized that there were literally thousands of knitters doing the same thing at that very same moment.
We are so, so cool.