Saturday, July 28, 2012

Observations from the Couch 7.28

I don't plan on writing every day of the Games but I had a few things to share from today including this photo of the U.S. field hockey team at last night's opening ceremonies. The girls play their first game Sunday afternoon against Germany
at 4 PM EST.

The were a pair of big wins for American women today. In a game I 'watched' on twitter the soccer team defeated Columbia 3-0 and in the process guaranteed themselves a spot in the tournament quarterfinals. In the game Abby Wambach showed her toughness by taking a blatant punch to the head only to shake it off and score later in the second half. The goal was Wambach's 6th as an Olympian which moves her ahead of Mia Hamm as the most ever by an American. Colombia's team is ranked 28th in the world and includes 9 players who are on NCAA teams.

The heavily favored, and number 1 ranked in the world, U.S. women's volleyball team opened today with a 3-1 (25-19, 25-17, 20-25, 25-21) win over South Korea. The team includes four Penn State graduates, Nicole Fawcett ('09), Christa Harmotto ('09), Alisha Glass ('10), and Megan Hodge ('10). Harmotto and Hodge are part of the 12 player squad, while Fawcett and Glass are alternates. All were part of Penn State teams that that won four straight NCAA titles between 2007 and 2010, a run that included a record 109 match winning streak.

Finally a link to an interesting review of the opening ceremonies by Chinese artist Ai Weiwei in The Guardian. Ai Weiwei was a consultant to the design and construction of the Beijing Olympic Stadium. He withdrew before it was finished and described the Olympics as a government controlled "empty event" not shared by ordinary people. Ai Weiwei finishes his review with this line, "Anyone who watched it would have a clear understanding of what England is."

That final line is one of the scariest things I have ever read.

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