Yes, it’s official. Boris Johnson (and, yes, I’m well aware that this is my second Boris-related post today) announced yesterday that the 2012 Olympic Games would be “cosier” than the Beijing Olympics.
Now, normally, I’d be a bit suspicious of cost-cutting exercises with something of this scale but — especially given the tumultuous effects of the excesses of recent years, which we are now having to deal with — I actually quite like the sound of a cosier, more intimate and thrifty Olympic Games. In fact, if it were up to me I’d make the athletes get rid of their fancy, high-tech footwear and run in Marks & Spencer carpet slippers, which would fit in quite nicely with the “cosy” theme, I think.
Also, we could decentralise it. Never mind these flash stadia, let’s stage the track and field events on school playing fields! Hell, we could even introduce new events — which I know Boris would approve of. We could have Olympic standard egg and spoon races, a three legged race and (my favourite) a fat dads race. Yes, I can see it now! Families scattered about on their picnic blankets, pouring from thermos flasks of tea and eating potted beef sandwiches (white bread, with the crusts off.) The Olympics à la John Betjeman?
And then there’s that other word the Boris uses; an “intimacy”. Something else to conjure with — but perhaps best left for another day