Sunday, February 14, 2010

Tragedy & Hope

The Olympics opened this weekend in an amazing ceremony out in Vancouver. Sadly, the day also marked the loss of a luger from Georgia in a tragic & horrific accident. His fellow Olympians decided to march in the ceremony anyway and received a standing ovation from the crowd. Such a sad, sad time. The silence of 60 000 people reached around the world and into many hearts. My thoughts and sympathies are with his family.

The rest of the ceremony produced many moments of beauty. Of course, as a Canadian, I'm a little biased. Just a little. :)

A few of my favourite moments: the whales in the floor, the amazing 1st Nations dancers, the angelic voice of KD Lang soaring through the stadium, the 8 fabulous people carrying in the Olympic flag and 5 amazing athletes lighting the cauldron.

Hope. That's the best part of the Olympics for me. Hope for people to get along, hope for a clean competition, hope for governments to follow the lead of the athletes, and hope for the future.

I've still got a couple of blog awards to accept and pass along, but I'll leave that for the next post. I'm playing around a bit with the blog. I've put all of the awards on another page. At this point Blogger won't let me add any more links to my blog roll or any more "Gadgets" to the side bar. I thought maybe the page was too long, so I moved the awards to another page. But so far it hasn't made any difference.

There are a few blogs I'm following that I haven't been able to add to the roll. My apologies to those people. I'm trying to remedy the situation, but it may take me a bit to figure out. Blogger doesn't seem to like me very much :( It took months before I could upgrade the blog and get it to give me a toolbar with a picture icon on it so I could add photos. Hopefully this doesn't take as long to fix or figure out! Does anyone know if there is a limit to the number of blogs you can add?

Did you have any favourite Olympic Opening Ceremony moments? Or any favourite comments from Twitter? @SmartBitches & a few others had me in stitches throughout the night.

And a happy Valentine's Day to you all :)

66 comments:

  1. Happy Valentine's Day, Jemi! :)

    What a lovely post about the opening of the Olympics. It's tragic that it began on such a sad note. Thank goodness the tragedy has drawn attention to the athletes' safety concerns; it's too bad that they weren't heard sooner.

    I'm sorry that I missed your Creative Writing entries... lol... what fun! :D

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  2. Thank you Lindsey!

    I agree - safety has to come first - but so many athletes like the rush of pushing those boundaries! Hopefully tracks will be safer from now on.

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  3. Would you believe that I was so wrapped up in revisions that I completely forgot about the Olympics? But I did hear about the luger and I feel so sad for his family. Hearing about the standing ovation gave me chills and lifted my heart a bit though.

    I was sorry to miss KD Lang too!

    Also, I don't *think* there's a limit to the amount of blogs you can add!

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  4. Sara - we're all sports nuts in my family, so forgetting the Olympics would be impossible :) I'm so impressed with your focus!

    *Sigh* I still can't add anything. Maybe I've broken Blogger. Again. :(

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  5. That was a sad moment for the entire world to see. And I added you to my Blog Roll List. Hopefully it'll bring your site additional traffic. Have a great day.

    Stephen Tremp

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  6. Stephen - it was so incredibly sad - a real tragedy for his family and the world.

    Thanks! I appreciate the support :)

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  7. The Olympics are always so inspiring, but I feel so sad about the Georgian luger too.

    Whenever I have trouble changing something on my blog I look at it in a different browser. For example, when I use Safari, I can't change anything around and sometimes I can't add anything, but it works fine in Firefox. I hope that works for you too!

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  8. Great post about the Olympics, Jemi. Despite the tragedies, they give us hope and offer inspiration. I thought the homage to Nodar Kumaritashvili was touching. I can't say it was my "favorite" part, but it was definitely the most poignant for me.

    As for Blogger, it's a mystery. I can add all the gadgets I want *if* I add them to the top of the blog page - Of course I don't always want them at the top of the page. :) I have my blog roll in two parts (two gadgets), writers in one part, agents/editors in another. Maybe that makes a difference?

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  9. Happy Valentine's Day Jemi!

    I'm still sad about the luger accident. He was so young.

    The Olympics is really making me want to go visit Vancouver! I've been to Toronto, so I need to make plans for another Canadian trip!

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  10. Natalie - I love the Olympics :) So sad about the luger.

    Good suggestions - I don't know how to do that yet - but I'll look it up. Thanks!!

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  11. VR - you're right VR - it was very touching and memorable.

    I've tried adding another gadget, but it's just not cooperating! It's driving me slowly nuts. Or not so slowly. :)

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  12. Karen - I've never been to Vancouver either - would love to go. I have a few friends (from real life & blogging life) who live out there and it looks like such an incredible place to live :)

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  13. You said something that really touched a cord in me. 'Hope for the governments to follow the lead of the athletes'. You are so right, Jemi. In sport, everyone is courteous and civilized no matter the colour/religion or culture.

    As for the luger. Tragic beyond words. Deeply saddened. A dream snatched away far too soon.

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  14. Wendy - thanks - I do think these athletes most often "get it" - with a few notable exceptions of course. We could do much worse than following their lead.

    The poor boy - so young - a life full of promise cut off so suddenly.

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  15. It was a gorgeous, spectacular Opening Ceremony. The sadness was dealt with instead of being brushed aside, which was appropriate and quite moving. k.d. lang could have sang all night, and it would have been alright by me. ;-)

    Thank you, Canada, for hosting the games in your beautiful land, best of luck to all the athletes, and Go Team USA!!!

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  16. Debra - I agree! I liked the way the tragedy was handled. And KD was awesome!!

    Looking forward to great games!! :)

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  17. KD Lang and the whales stood out for me. I feel so sorry for the family of the athlete who died. I'm glad they quickly stopped showing the full accident.

    Helen
    Straight From Hel

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  18. I missed the opening ceremonies, but did watch last night, including the luge competition. I cannot believe the speed with which the athletes move, it is just amazing, so indicative of the strength and concentration necessary to compete. How sad to have lost one of the athletes, everyone's heart felt that loss.

    It should be an exciting couple of weeks, most definitely!

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  19. Helen - I agree - those were awesome moments. I'm also glad they've stopped showing the accident. No one benefits from showing it.

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  20. Joanne - the luge athletes require such a high level of concentration - it's just a wild sport!

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  21. That was such a tragic loss! Truly heartbreaking.

    I haven't watched much of the Olympics thus far, though it always seems to be on in the background. I did, however, catch some of the opening ceremony--my favorite was the poet and KD Lang who sang probably one of the best songs ever written. It was all done so well and so beautifully.

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  22. Carol - it really was. So sad.

    The poet was AMAZING as well! So awesome to have poetry in the Opening! And KD Lang sang like a goddess :)

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  23. I haven't been watching, but I'm saddened by the tragedy.

    Happy Valentine's Day.

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  24. Medeia - it certainly was - poor kid.

    Happy Valentine's Day to you as well - hope you had a wonderful day :)

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  25. This is a beautiful post, Jemi! I wanted to watch the opening ceremonies, but we don't get network channels because of our satellite so I missed them. I was deeply saddened by the death of the luger. It's wonderful that his teammates were honored that way.

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  26. Thanks Shannon!

    The poor luger's death hit a lot of people very hard. Such a young life to be cut short. It was nice to see him honoured so well.

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  27. The death of the luger is awful. My thoughts are with his family and teammates too. Lovely post Jemi!

    My boyfriend is a huge biathlon fan (his since was once on the training team for the Olympics). But we don't have TV in our apartment so he has been planning his day around sitting at his computer watching the live updates when the guys were doing the sprint. It was too funny listening to him yell at the computer screen when the US guys were missing the shots. And he is rooting for the Canadian's too since we now have a special place in our hearts after a two week trip across Canada this past summer.

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  28. His sister was once on the training team.... blah blah. Sorry I wish I could just edit instead of delete and re-post.

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  29. I was really impressed - we got the Olympics opening live here in Australia. I wish I didn't have so much to get done - the kids loved it. Just wish I could put things on hold and go watch.

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  30. I did not watch the opening ceremonies, but I have been watching the games. I love the passion and the excitement of the competitors. I love the emotion on their faces before and after their competitions. In fact, it is the subject of my guest post today on Mason's Thoughts in Progress: http://masoncanyon.blogspot.com/.

    Congrats on your award!

    Michele
    SouthernCityMysteries

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  31. I thought the opening ceremonies were beautiful and that they appropriately recognized the tragic death.

    No, no limit to the blogs in the blogroll. How are you trying to add them? I wouldn't bother going into the "customize" section of Blogger...I usually just make sure I'm logged in, click on the screwdriver/wrench icon at the bottom of the blogroll, and add it from there. This may be what you're doing, though! Also, it might be worth trying it in a different browser--IE or Firefox, depending on which one you're trying it in.

    Elizabeth
    Mystery Writing is Murder

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  32. We won our first gold last night, GO CANADA. Also my thanks to you for the award, I'm grateful and will make a post on it very soon.
    I hope you had a lovely Valentine's Day.
    Warm regards,
    Simone

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  33. Ruth Ann - I know - it's so frustrating when you can't delete!

    Biathalon is fun - a few kids I've known have really gotten into it and have reached the provincial level. Lots of fun :)

    I'm glad he at least got to watch it on the computer! It would have been fun just to watch him :)

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  34. Michelle - It was a great ceremony. I'd love to put everything on hold as well - I think I'm going to put a tv on in the classroom (without sound) next week, so we don't miss anything reall cool :)

    Your Australian athletes usually rock at the arial ski jumping - can't wait for that event!

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  35. Michele E - I just love the games - so much spirit and still tons of camaraderie!

    I'll definitely pop over to Mason's today and check out your post! :)

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  36. Elizabeth - yes they were terrrific!

    I haven't clicked on the wrench/screwdriver option - I'll have to try that. I'm nervous about switching up the browser (I'm in IE) because I've never done that before, but you make it sound easy! I'll give it a shot - thanks for your help :)

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  37. Simone - It was so EXCITING and tense!! Bilodeau sure kept his cool. He seems like a great guy - it's so nice for him to win a gold :)

    You're welcome on the award - well deserved :)

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  38. Elizabeth - you're brilliant - it worked :) Thanks so much!!!

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  39. I am probably the world's worst at remembering to put up bloggers on my blog roll. I went and checked and, of course, I'd forgotten to put up yours. I've put that on my to-do list today. I don't know if there's a limit. In hopes of making more room for bloggers, I've only put up a few awards and I'll take even those down if I need to.

    Helen
    Straight From Hel

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  40. Helen - that's so funny :)

    I'd rather have the blogs up too, so I made another page to thank all of the people who've been kind enough to send awards my way!

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  41. I loved kd lang and Sarah McLachlan, and the whales.

    I also loved that Betty Fox was one of the eight carrying the flag. I think they did a good job of picking the flag carriers and the torch. Steve Nash was a surprise, but a good one.

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  42. Carolyn - the music was awesome! The whales were so realistic!!

    I agree - Betty Fox was a superb choice - apparently there was an attempt to get a hologram of Terry to light it, but the technology just isn't there yet. That would have been incredible :)

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  43. jemi- I'm with you - I loved the moment of silence, the whales were spectacular, kd lang and leonard's words, the aborginal dancing and the general spirit of hey - we're happy to be Canuks - have a look, sit down - enjoy, eh?

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  44. Jan - it was amazing & touching!

    You've summed it up so well - it was all pretty homey and comfy & "us". Loved it :)

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  45. I didn't realize you were a native Canadian. I was so touched the Georgia teammates still participated in the opening ceremony. I'm sure it wasn't easy to continue without their fellow teammate. It was such a tragic loss. (Hugs)Indigo

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  46. Indigo - sorry - miscommunication somewhere - I'm not a 1st nations person myself - have friends/students who are though!

    It certainly was tough for them all the way around. So sad.

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  47. Happy post Valentine's day!

    I LOVE watching the Olympics!I n fact, I watching right now!

    Blogger is funny sometimes. In fact, I think google-connect hates me.

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  48. i wish they had not shown the accident at the opening ceremonies. It was too much!

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  49. Jennifer - me too :) I'm flipping between speed skating, pairs skating & a little bit of luge :)

    I like to quote my daughter at times, "Technology hates me." But I think, thanks to Elizabeth SC, it's working - for the moment.

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  50. Shelli - Yikes. They showed the accident during the Opening Ceremonies in the States??

    It wasn't shown on our channels. I'm glad. I hope the poor Georgians didn't have to see it again. So sad.

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  51. I still can't believe they showed the accident on over here. Poor taste! But yes, aside from all that, the Olympics are filled with hope. I always end up crying watching the stories behind some of the amazing athletes. It's just incredible.

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  52. LiLa - I can't believe it either - very odd to do that.

    The stories get me too. Some people work so hard and give up so much to compete. And so many of them are just really nice people. Awesome stuff :)

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  53. Jemi,

    Thanks for the nice post. I don't usually watch the Olympics (I know, don't skewer me for it), but did this time around. The opening ceremony was amazing.

    What I find tragic about the whole thing is that the press has continued to show footage about the accident that I feel is not necessary. It is all people talk about and puts a shadow over the whole thing that focuses on the gruesomeness of it and not the humanity of it.

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  54. Cat - it's okay - we all have our interests - I'm just a sports nut! :)

    No coverage of the accident has been shown up here since hours after it happened. I agree - it should never have been shown at all. No one needs to see it.

    Glad to hear you enjoyed the ceremonies :)

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  55. Shelli - Yippeeeeeee!! Thanks - I'll pop on over :)

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  56. Your opening paragraph was just beautiful, Jemi. I cried when I heard the news - so sad.

    We don't have cable or satellite (we're very much an Internet family!) so I haven't seen much of the Olympics. Probably a good thing, because it would just make me homesick for Vancouver! But I'm finding that Twitter's been keeping me up-to-date quite well :)

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  57. Belle - it was so incredibly sad.

    Twitter is an amazing tool - I can't believe how many people tweet about almost everything that happens - moment by moment :)

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  58. We've been losing power here so much with the weather that we've left the tv off. I guess I completely forgot about the Olympics...:(

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  59. Yikes! I'm such a sports nut, I can't even imagine forgetting :)

    You poor folks have had such a difficult time with the weather - it's been rough. Hope it only gets better!

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  60. I haven't even figured out how to add links to blogger yet in my posts. I tried the html with no luck, so I'm no help to ya! Good luck.

    Haven't watched any of the Olympics yet. I'm not too into sports, but I do love the figure skating.

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  61. It's been great watching the Olympics thus far. I'm not terribly into sports either but do like watching some of the events.

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  62. Lisa R - lol :) That took me a while too! Highlight the name of the person, then hit the link icon, then paste in the link in the pop up window. Hope that helps - I wasn't highlighting - that was my mistake :)

    I love sports - & the men's figure skating finals is on tonight!! Can't wait!

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  63. Lisa G - I think the Olympics tend to attract non-sports-watching folks to watch some just through the spirit of it all.

    Plus - sometimes there's nothing else on! We have 4 or 5 channels showing different events most of the time :)

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  64. Bummed that I forgot all about the opening ceremonies, but my sister recorded them, so I will get to see them. Hopefully before the closing ceremonies air! :)

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  65. Layinda - lol :)

    Hope you do get to see them before the closing ones!! There were lots of great moments to enjoy.

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