Sunday, 9 September 2012

Understanding the Paralympics

I'll be honest, I haven't been following the Paralympics very closely - no way near as close as I followed the actual Olympics. Mostly because the coverage is on channel 4 instead of the BBC. Now I love channel 4, its the home of Made in Chelsea, Revenge, Big fat Gypsy Weddings and trashy documentaries ('the girl who became 3 boys' anyone?) however their branching out to cover high profile sport (here horse-racing does not count) is not working for me in the same way. Every time I try to flick onto the paralympics there is always an advert break on. always. I never thought I'd be saying this but I miss the bbc..! Even Gary Linikar and Ian Thorpe's awkward on screen chemistry, never being able to tell apart Clare Balding and Sue Barker (are you sure they are not the same person) and that annoying blonde women who tried mountain biking and immediately fell off head first over the smallest rock. 

Having said this, I have managed to catch a few fleeting glimpses of sport in between the advert breaks. On the whole I've found the presenters pretty bland and uninteresting -there has been nothing to get me excited or especially draw me in (e.g. no jazzy menswear being worn by Ian Thorpe) The only redeeming fact is channel 4 have spiced up the evening recap of the days sport (The Last Leg) by making it into a sort of comedy panel show. Thats right, do what you do best channel 4. Think 8 out of 10 cats mashed with 10 o'clock live but about the paraylmpics. Clearly the best way to promote disabled sport is to have a load of comedians mocking the athletes. To be fair though it has a very warm upbeat vibe. The Show is hosted by Australian Adam Hills who himself only has 1 leg. This means there are also a lot of Australian jokes and an Ashes style score board between the two countries. The shows catchphrase "Is it Okay..?" encourages guests and viewers to cross the 'politically correct' boundaries and ask the questions they don't know are acceptable though it is always a bit risky using comedian such as Jimmy car who can be known to take things too far. In its own way its changing public perception of disability and its, well, really funny.

Monday, 3 September 2012

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This Season's Football top talking points

A new football season has started. This means its time again to make irritating comments at the weekends during match of the day to annoy my brother: "Why is that goal keeper wearing a hat?" "Whats with his hair?" "Why is that manager always chewing gum?" "Whats the offside rule again!" (jokes I of course know the offside rule perfectly). But anyway, Its always an exciting time for me. However, for most girls the start of a new season is a non-event. I am sure none of my friends could for example name a team promoted to the premier league this year or know which team Van Persie has just (regretfully) signed with. Its sad to be a girl and realise you have no-one to talk about football with. There is always more than just shots on targets, penalty decisions and player transfers to chat about in football so I've complied a list of this seasons top talking points (for girls).

1. Whose got the best team kit
This is always important. No-one wants to support a team with an ugly kit. This season for example why did Aston Villa think Toxic Green was the way to go for their away kit. I'm sure practically every team has tried it and no it still doesn't work. As far as home kits go one of the main mysteries in football is still yet to be solved: how to tell Aston Villa and West Ham United apart. Yes they both play in Maroon shirts with blue sleeves. No i can't see any difference either.

A big talking point is Man United's new home kit. They have gone for a checked red and, er, darker red shirt. Personallly I quite like it, the shades of red are honestly too similar for the check pattern to stand out too much but it adds a bit of interest to an otherwise boring shirt. Apparently it has been majorly critisied though for looking like a table cloth / tin of shortbread. (haha)