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It's seems like a statement of the bleeding obvious to say that London 2012 has provided the best Paralympic Games ever. Regardless of the standard of play, they have captured the imagination like never before, in no small part because they, like the Olympic Games themselves, were conducted by LOCOG. No longer are the Paralympics a forgotten afterthought to the main event.
Massive live TV coverage in the UK through Channel 4, in Australia through the ABC, and elsewhere, but what of the US? Ten hours on NBC. Ten hours over nine days. Edited highlights.
The Republican four-day infomercial drew to a close at Tampa, Florida on Thursday, even if the first day was curtailed due to the threat of Cyclone/Hurricane Isaac. To no one's surprise, Mittens Romney won the nomination as the GOP candidate for the electoral college candidates who will, in turn, be chosen by the American people on November 6.
Storification of my tweets and selected retweets of others during the second and final episode of "Howzat: Kerry Packer's War" screened on Channel Nine on Sunday night, August 26, 2012.
The first episode of the two-part miniseries "Howzat: Kerry Packer's War" went to air on Channel 9 at about 8.40pm on Sunday night, August 19, 2012. Until I complete a review following the conclusion of episode 2 on August 26, here's a storification of my tweets from the evening plus some others:
Twenty-six sports, 302 medal events, about ten and a half thousand competitors. A total of 204 National Olympic Committees represented at the Games of the XXX Olympiad, plus the "Independent" athletes. Medals were won by 85 NOCs, one less than the total at Beijing. That's 41 per cent of competing teams coming away from London with at least one medal, with Bahrain, Botswana, Cyprus, Gabon, Grenada, Guatemala and Montenegro each taking a medal for the first time. One hundred and nineteen NOCs missed out on an Olympic medal in London.
The Olympic Games are over. Now let's take some deep breaths, and take some time to get the euphoria out of our systems before reflecting on what it all means.
My last recollection of live action at the London Olympics was at around 1am Monday, falling asleep as the Washington Generals of the men's basketball final, Spain, were just maintaining their grip in was a surprisingly close tussle.
August 12, 1920 - ninety-years ago today. A harness race at Parsloes Park, London. The trotter Henrietta Guy was approaching the finish line as its driver cried out "Stop my horse". The horse continued to the winning post, its driver fell to the ground, having suffered a heart attack, and died. An incredible end to the life of Walter Winans, a man whose place in the history of the Olympic Games is both unsung and unique.
It can be a reflection of an occasion of euphoria to describe something as "the best ever". It could be the statement of a serial sycophant, as with the late JA Samaranch, to describe each Olympics as "the best ever". I'm not in a position to say whether the 2012 London Olympic Games - held in their tightly-controlled environment of both the strictest physical and commercial security - are the best ever. But watching from my armchair, my couch, my computer desk, more often from my bed at 5 or 6 am, I'm willing to call the athletics competition at the 2012 Olympic Stadium as the most enthralling I've seen. Even in those events where the favourite(s) were so obvious.