Thursday, April 10, 2008

News of Olympic (torch) proportions....

Last weekend Teenage Daughter heard that the Olympic torch would be passing through San Francisco this week. She asked if we could take the day off from school and go to the city to see the event. I briefly considered taking the kids up to see the festivities. Until events unfolded in London and Paris that is...

With the threat of potentially violent protests hanging over the torch relay, I told the kids that we would just have to be content to watch it all on TV. So yesterday afternoon I set up the TiVo and settled in to watch the event. Although it was not what anyone expected- I was not disappointed. It was actually quite hysterical to watch the news reporters trying to figure out where the torch was- then catching up to the route. Seeing the unexpected delight on the faces of passers-by, including a group of school children on a field trip, as they were surprised by the passing runners was a hoot!

At the end of the day protesters claimed victory since they managed to alter the route. San Francisco city officials claimed victory as well- since they thwarted the protesters by keeping the flame lit and preempting any rioting or violence.

The real losers were the families and spectators who just wanted to see the Olympic torch go by- possibly a once in a lifetime event. And while I get the politics of the protesters, and I understand the swelling of nationalistic pride of our local Chinese community- I feel most for those who just wanted to see the torch.

I hope they had set up their TiVos...


If you haven't yet heard about what the news reports were calling 'the great torch switcharoo', read this article.

1 comment:

John-Michael said...

I really like two things about your response to this 'opportunity.' First, you allowed yourself an objective assessment of the elements that were at play, and came up with a creative 'game plan' that gave opportunity for you all to 'watch' this moment of history. You engaged yourself in keeping a 'special' air about it.

Secondly, you gave everyone a demonstration of a positive response that gives precedent to the enjoyment of all in an event that has potential to be spoiled ... had you not been so tuned in.

Very cool, indeed!