Outrage in the British media over the news that this cute little girl was not singing but miming at the opening of the Games in Beijing. Well, shock horror. How about the news that the chap seen here lighting the beacon at Wembley in 1948 was picked for his good looks? The organizer of the Torch Relay, Commander Collins, also specified that the beacon lighter should be blond! And this was how long after the 1936 Olympics? Collins gave strict instructions that the first man to pick up the torch when it arrived at Dover should not be bald or have a paunch. Oh, and drugs were available, too.
I learned this and much more from A Very British Olympics on BBC4 yesterday evening. Talk about Make Do and Mend; the male British athletes were kitted out by Simpsons but the women had to make their own vests and shorts. It was surprising to see so many people who had actually taken part in the games, people who must have been at least eighty yet were astonishingly well preserved. Does sport keep you young or is it the longevity gene which makes you good at sport?