Australia is in ninth place in the Athens Olympics medal tally following Friday night's official opening.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald's olympic games website, Australia was on 0 gold, 0 silver and 0 bronze, for a total of 0 medals. Of the 0 events decided in the Games at that point, Albania was in the lead, ahead of Algeria and American Samoa. Pity poor Zimbabwe.
If Jesus could be born in 4BC then I guess the Olympics can start two days before the uttering of the phrase "Let the games begin".
Let's get something clear from the outset - opening ceremonies are a wank. And the Athens opening ceremony was a classic (no pun intended) case. It was an incredible achievement and logistic tour de force... but what does this have to do with sport?
I'll leave my comments, having viewed the replay on channel 7 during the day today, to just a few:
Hooray for TV megabucks. Olympic competition always gets under way these days with soccer on the Wednesday, but no, the Opening Ceremony must be held on the Friday night. Day zero should really be day three.
Thursday, September 28, 2000, Dianne and I were sitting in the stands at Stadium Australia watching the second morning of the decathlon. Come the discus throw, and there was one guy who slammed both of his first two throws straight into the cage. His third throw was judged to be legal only after a protest. He went on to win the gold medal. My hero of Sydney 2000 is back for Athens 2004. Estonia's first-ever male gold medallist, he is the one and only Erki Nool.
These Olympic Games are as uninteresting to me as any since, perhaps, Seoul 1988. To try and generate some sort of excitement for myself, here are the competitions, the teams and the people I'll be watching in Athens 2004:
It's Athens 2004 time. I've found it really hard to get enthusiastic about these Olympics. I think that four years is too frequent a cycle, and the experience locally of Sydney 2000 is personally a bit hard to top. But it's hard to take the Olympic Spirit seriously any more.
I'll be following this one. San Francisco-based new media journalist JD Lasica has teamed up with Macromedia founder Marc Canter to create the Open Source Media Project. Media being, for the most part, audio and visual media.
The evil Donkey John is laying claim to Timor Leste's oil resources. Guide brave Xanana Gusmario up the oil rig using the arrow keys, jumping the stolen barrels of oil. Activate the International Crane of Justice and use it to bring greedy Donkey John down.
You need to have Flash installed on your computer, but this online parody of the classic computer games is great fun if you do!
An amazing story from the USA, of a couple in Charleston, West Virginia who wore T-shirts with anti-GW Bush slogans when they attended the President's official Fourth of July appearance at the State Capitol.
Jeff and Nicole Rank were ejected from the rally, arrested, handcuffed, fingerprinted and remanded to appear in court at a later date. And Nicole then found herself sacked from her job in classical Kafkaesque fashion.