Sunday, August 12, 2012

love the Who

Exhausted! Just saw the evening replay of the closing ceremonies. Could the British pull out any more stops? Well yes, there were no Stones, no Coldplay, no Adele. But mon dieu, props, costumes, fireworks, supermodels, dancers, film, many lively singers, Annie Lennox on a pirate boat, Eric Idle shot out of a cannon, Mrs. Beckham teetering on a London cab, the fabulous Who or at least its 2 remaining members - and the beautiful face and voice of John Lennon, haunting us. Can't beat that.

My mother watched it this afternoon. "A bit all over the place," she said, "and I didn't know who the singers were." Well, Mum, I didn't either, many of them. My daughter just texted: "Meh." But I thought it was fun. Earlier, I found moving the faces of the marathon medal winners, those 3 lean racing machines from Kenya and Uganda.

Much discussion from the Canadian commentators, in the boring bits, about the mediocre Canadian showing - world champions flubbing it at the Olympics. Perhaps our teams need training in handling pressure - there seemed to be an awful lot of whining and tears. But I hardly watched and don't care, to tell you the truth.

This afternoon, my own tiny Olympic event - my friend Douglas held a recital for his singing students and asked if I wanted to perform a short excerpt from my storytelling 60's memoir-in-progress. Nerve wracking, trying to stick to my own script - I completely dried at one point and felt I'd flubbed the thing entirely. But afterwards, people came up to tell me their own 60's stories and said they'd enjoyed it. One said, "It's the universal story of a young person opening up." Very heartening. So I say, "Onward," yet again.

Last week, a 70th birthday party; last night, the 40th birthday party of Jason, one of my long-term writing students. I finally met his family, about whom I've heard so much over the years. I was happy to tell them that many of my students have dark stories to tell about their childhoods, but not Jason. His was one of the happiest I've ever encountered, and meeting his cheerful, accepting parents last night, I saw why.


  1. Many factors contribute to the success of a country's competitors in the world arena. Perhaps another clue to the modest results of our fine Canadian athletes lies in the last sentence of your third paragraph.

  2. Chris, I am hardly a typical fan - I don't watch any sports, ever, except tennis with my mother. Many Canadians care deeply. It seems incomprehensible that champions like Simon Whitfield blew the competition so utterly, and I wondered if it had to do with the incredible pressure - that perhaps their physical training was good enough, obviously, but their psychological training was not.