Shame on NBC!

Have you been watching the Olympics? For someone who doesn’t otherwise watch television, it’s always a bit of a culture shock to have it blaring for hours every evening during the Games while I knit frantically on whatever I’m doing for Ravelympics er… the Ravellenic Games. It’s tough not to be moved by so many people who have put so much heart and soul into something they love, and I’m the probably rare American who can root loudly for athletes wearing something other than those weird Ralph Lauren sweaters Team USA was sporting at the opening ceremony. Show heart and have a great back story, and I don’t much care where you were born; I love heart wherever I see it. However, I digress…

What shocked me this past evening was the editorial presented by Bob Costas – that one about the Ukraine. It started out sounding like a good human interest piece, but it disintegrated into a political attack on Russia and Vladimir Putin. No, I’m not wearing blinders regarding the political situation, but there is a time and place for everything, and this was neither. In the opening ceremonies, there was a clear and distinct call from the International Olympic Committee to keep politics out of the Games. For these 16 days and within this venue, the plea was to let the focus be only on the incredible skills of this worldwide gathering of champions.  Much to the shame of Bob Costas, as well as NBC for allowing it, that line was more than crossed, and in prime time programming.

I’m thankful to live in a country that allows freedom of speech, but having that freedom doesn’t negate the need to be honorable. Where is the honor in the primary voice this fortnight of the Olympics in the USA bashing the host country within the confines of the broadcast of the Olympic Games? Would he, being invited into someone’s home for dinner, boldly diss the host during dessert? There are just things honor doesn’t allow, and Friday night, Costas crossed that line. Shame on you, Bob Costas, and shame on NBC!

Published in: on February 22, 2014 at 7:58 am  Comments (2)  
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It continues to be a string of odds and ends sort of days here, with so many out of the ordinary things happening that I can scarce keep up at times. Today was no exception. DH discovered that Sarah Palin was going to be speaking not terribly far from here, so headed off to obtain a couple of tickets to the event. And no, this isn’t going to turn into some sort of political post. I’m not generally keen on politics on any level, to be quite honest – not national, not local, and especially not in little cliques of people. However, this was a bit of an adventure for me, as I’d never been to a political rally, and I’m infinitely curious by nature.

Thankfully, I grabbed some of my knitting on the way out the door, as the highway patrol wasn’t managing traffic in an overly equitable fashion. It took us 45 minutes to travel the last 2 miles, and even though I was the driver, I put seven rows on my shawl – probably the only thing that kept me from going bonkers as we counted two dozen cars coming toward us, then would have our own turn to move forward 3-4 car lengths before oncoming traffic continued with another 20 vehicles. This made us satisfactorily late, meaning we missed all the preliminary speeches, got to park on the far side of the highway, and once we found our way to the room and went through security (Don’t you just love watching a man paw through your purse?), provided us with a spot to stand in the open area between the two large and very warm people masses gathered at the event. It was, for me at least, a rather odd sensation to be there seeing someone I’d only seen on TV in an atmosphere I’d only ever seen on TV – a really strange feeling of unreality to it all. I doubt I’d ever make a habit of going to such activities, but I’m quite glad for having had the experience.

Afterward, I was looking forward to a trip to UDF, promised by DH before we’d ever left the house, but even though we’d hung around for 45 minutes post speech, hoping to perhaps gain an autograph, there was still quite the traffic jam remaining. Since there was a Dairy Queen in the front yard of the hotel that had hosted the rally, we decided second best would work. Of course, we weren’t the only people with this idea, so the moment a table opened, I grabbed it, leaving hubby in the ordering line. I was terribly tired from the long walk and nearly two hours of standing. A few minutes later, a couple of men asked if I was actually going to be using the table, and since there were just the two of them, they were quickly invited to join us. I was surprised to hear them speaking something other than English on their way to pick up their own dinners, but the room was too noisy for me to hear what language it was. A few minutes later, as the four of us settled to our eats, I quickly discerned German – not a language one hears around here. And once introductions were made, we had a second surprise, because while one man was German, it turned out that the other was Israeli Jew – even more out of place in Clinton County! Of course, that begged questions as to why they were in our forlorn corner of the world, and the surprising answer was that they were there for the same reason we were – to see Sarah Palin! Long story short, they were sent to the States by a German broadcasting company, in order to film a half hour documentary about the American Presidential campaign/election. Since Obama was in Dayton this morning, and Palin in Wilmington this evening, they were winding up a busy day of filming. Needless to say, we had a lovely time sharing thoughts and opinions about the election campaign, the economy, and other assorted topics, as well as travel stories from our visits to Germany, and tips for Americans who might like to travel to Israel at some point. It was a delightfully serendipitous time, and I was terribly sorry it had to end. I’ve thought all night about how things worked together just perfectly for us to have such an unexpected pleasure, and what a special happening we’d have missed if we’d not been willing to share our table.

I do so love serendipity!

Published in: on October 10, 2008 at 9:26 am  Comments (1)  
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