Today we have a guest post from my friend Darci, a bonafide Olympics expert who blogs over at Swifter, Higher, Stronger! Enjoy!
Hey there, Shades of Sarah readers! I’m Darci, your resident Olympics expert, here to tell you what you need to know about the London 2012 Olympic Games. Because if you’re not excited, you totally should be.
Women’s soccer kicks off the fun even before the cauldron is lit, with Team USA taking on France Wednesday afternoon. Missed it? No problem. The tournament runs through August 9th so you’ll have ample opportunity to see Hope Solo (my girl crush! – Sarah) and her rock star teammates go for the third straight American gold.
The games officially open on Friday night with the opening ceremony, directed by Danny Boyle of Slumdog Millionaire and 127 Hours fame. I spent the spring semester abroad in London and as a volunteer with London 2012 Ceremonies, so I can personally assure you that your jaw will hit the floor more than once. It’s full of British history, pop culture, and what’s rumored to be the biggest set change in history. Seriously. July 27th, 7:30 pm EST on NBC. Be there or miss out on all the water cooler topics for the next week.
Swimming begins promptly on Saturday morning and is barely off the air for a moment until the Olympic flame is extinguished. Michael Phelps is looking to put on a repeat performance of his domination in Beijing, but you can bet that Ryan Lochte won’t go quietly into the night. On the women’s side of things, newcomer Missy Franklin is expected to make waves (pun most definitely intended).
On the track, Usain Bolt is on his own quest to hold onto the title of Fastest Man in the History of Ever, while hurdler Lolo Jones tries to put her heartbreaking stumble in Beijing behind her and take home the gold. Lolo was in the middle of a media storm recently when she revealed that she’s still a virgin – but more importantly, she’s an absolute riot! Follow her on Twitter, @lolojones.
Over in gymnastics, the Team USA ladies are without Beijing’s gold and silver medalists in the all-around competition, Nastia Liukin and Shawn Johnson. It’ll be really interesting to see new stars like Jordyn Wieber try to live up to their legacy! And speaking of legacy, LeBron James has been talking some trash about the 1992 men’s basketball Dream Team, saying that 2012’s squad is better. Better than what is arguably the best basketball team in history? The hottest NBA stars now have a lot to live up to; anything other than an easy gold medal will be a disappointment. We’re watching you, King James!
I desperately wish I could preview every event because I know I’m leaving out hundreds of stellar American athletes, but I’ll wrap this up with a plug for the closing ceremony on August 12th. Directed by the brilliant Kim Gavin, it’s a street party full still more awesome British music. And missing the handoff of the Olympic flag to the organizing committee of the Rio 2016 games (and the ensuing Brazilian performance!) is just not an option.
For more information on TV schedules, athletes, and who to watch, visit nbcolympics.com. Happy Olympics!
Thanks, Darci! And go Team USA!