The Past is a Different Planet II - Macleans.ca
 

The Past is a Different Planet II


 

There’s a great Youtube video of the opening ceremonies of the 1976 Olympics. The whole thing looks like a long American Apparel ad — check out just after the 5 minute mark when the mayor of Munich appears in some awesome folk getup. He must have been performing at the drums in the park off Mount Royal before heading over to the stadium.

And because I’m so excited, I’m going to spoil the absolute best moment of it for you. HOW COOL IS THIS??


 
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The Past is a Different Planet II

  1. I wonder when Olympic attire (for athletes) went from business casual to sporty.

    Oh, and the whole flag hanging limp thing? Wouldn't happen today. In 2010, we manufacture our own wind.

    • Yeah, noticed that too. Also when did we stop celebrating the athletes and instead decide to put on big fat overblown production numbers for openers?

      Also…the releasing of the PIGEONS??

      • Now I understand why athletes are given hats to wear during the opening ceremonies.

        The Olympics has become about so much more than just the athletes and their feats of …athleticism. It's a huge cultural event (I think VANOC is upping that ante even more so for the 2010 games) that's now attempting to reach out to all kinds of people who wouldn't ordinarily be interested in sport. Not to mention, the bigger the spectacle, the more opportunities for advertising. The more placement opportunities, the more potential for ad and sponsor revenue. The more revenue, the greater the games budget. And so it goes.

        As for why this doesn't get more flack from LSOs (as you're right, it does take the focus away from the athletes): Lots of grassroots sports organizations count on events like the Games to draw in new blood. It's not enough to inspire and make people (read: children) think "hey I wanna do that", they have to identify with sport and see something attainable for them, too.

        • The Olympics largely became commercialized as a result of a different business model for the 1984 Los Angeles summer games, headed by Peter Ueberroth. Canada's Dick Pound was also instrumental in turning it into what it has become today. From Ueberroth's wiki entry:

          The 1984 Olympics

          For five years Ueberroth served as the organizer of the 1984 Summer Olympics held in Los Angeles. He was a prominent figure in the games, receiving the Olympic Order in gold at its conclusion. Due to the success of the games, he was named Time magazine's Man of the Year in 1984. Under Ueberroth's leadership and management, the first privately financed Olympic Games resulted in a surplus of nearly $250 million.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Ueberroth

    • On a related matter, Jean Drapeau went into labour shortly after the opening ceremonies.

      • I was disappointed when Elizabeth II didn't sound like Scott Thompson. It's unnerving.

        • HAHA, nice.

  2. Damn! What ever you think of the man as a politician, that guy could pull off a difficult suit with serious conviction.

    "Hey Margaret. Did you know this stadium won't be paid off until our little Justin is a Member of Parliament?"

  3. I was waaay more impressed when I thought the white blazer behind Margaret Trudeau's hat was, in fact, a part of her hat.

    • Yeah, took a triple-take for me to realize it was more of a toque than a…well, beehive cap.

      • yeah got me too. i was def in awe of the awesomeness that could have been. should be start design and production on what we all thought we saw?

        • The association with effigy-burning religious groups might make mass production difficult.

  4. I consider myself a bit of a history buff but I really had no idea Sonny Crockett had been a Canadian prime minister.

  5. She has a giant sticky bud in her hat. Emergency stash in case the ceremony gets boring.

    • She doesn't just have a stash in her hat, she's got a 2ft tall bong in there with it! Hell, she might have a grow op in there!

  6. Wow! Just look at all those liberal party logos plastered all over everything. Even Trudeau's got a er…white suit on…

    • Too much satire for some i guess.

  7. Trudeau looks awesome…if he hadn't been PM he would have made a heck of of a mafia don. [ er… that's just a joke too sensitive types…i loved the man!]

  8. One of my fave bits was at the 3:14 mark where they show female DDR athletes (with purses no less)… they look right out of "Top Secret" or any other Cold War comedy!

    • Not sure this is on topic, but watched a PBS pgm last week about all the steroids, etc. that the East Germans were injecting into their young female athletes in prep for the '76 Olympics. The Olympics is a farce – all about big business.