Here’s a few thoughts, based on my experiences and opinions of London 2012:
- The Olympic Spirit – despite all of the rampant commercialism, the sport, the athletes, the spectators and the volunteers all came through with endless praise, and demonstrated what London and Britain is all about, a thoroughly refreshing change from the other image of Britain, of expense fiddling politicians, riots, an avaricious financial community, a failing economy and a depressed population.
- Endless conversations on the journeys to and from Wembley with strangers acknowledging the GamesMaker uniform, asking for help or directions, sharing their own experiences, wanting to know about my role, or just coming over and shaking hands.
- The Japanese Women’s football team, distraught at losing the final, but gracious enough to walk to one side of the pitch, form a line and bow to the crowd, then walk to the other side and do the same.
- The venues – despite the rampant commercialism, the venues were all free of advertising, and were dressed in the Olympic regalia. How refreshing to watch sport unencumbered by hoardings, moving displays or painted advertisements on or around the field of play.
- The Opening and Closing ceremonies – awesome!
- The performance of Team GB – awesome!
The Bad and Ugly
- Cynical brand protection that scared the general public and local communities from showing any spontaneous support for the Games. Away from the venues, there was little to show that a major global event was in town.
- Those parts of the media who devote all of their effort into finding fault and escalating irrelevant trivia into major news stories.
- Politicians desperately trying to take credit for the success of the Games, or making unsustainable promises about its legacy.