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bythebay

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  1. I was wondering that at first but after rewatching it, it became clear that he snuck back in the pipe and exited through a backdoor after he held up the red ball. What aired on tv was a video segment that looked almost exactly like the Tron portion in Sochi's OC, when it cut back to the live performance I saw him already walking towards the stands.
  2. I think labeling an Olympic ceremony as "theatre" is putting it in too small of a box. Artistic in nature yes, but I would rather call it a "showcase", whether it be historical, cultural, artistic, or popular culture, it's all relevant when it comes to showcasing a nation. In that sense, I think Japan succeeded to show the world what most people love about Japan in the modern era. Leaving out traditional elements in their show was a good decision in order to stand out from Beijing's ceremonies. What Japanese people lack in emotion, they make up for in style, ingenuity and technical abilities. Like I said, they played to their strengths. You can't expect a break dancer to express their abilities the same way as a ballet dancer. Japan just happens to be the breakdancer, lacking in grace and artistry but not in showmanship and what they did was entertain their audience. If that's not your cup of tea you're entitled to that but again, what to you was cold, to me was cool so to each their own.
  3. Overall I think the CC was good, more festive and enjoyable than the OC, music was better as well. Better CC than Beijing and Athens but not as good as Sydney and London imo. Tokyo handover was the highlight, I was never that excited about the games in Tokyo before but the handover ceremony reminded me of all the exciting things about Japan and now I'm psyched. I was really looking forward to seeing more floats for the Carnival segment of the finale, at least five (one for each Olympic ring/continent perhaps) but I guess the budget kept them from going all out.
  4. You say it was COLD, I say it was COOL. I don't think Japan has anything to prove when it comes to being high tech, people all over the world for decades have been aware of Japan being at the forefront of technology. Japanese people for the most part are very unemotional, the polar opposite of Brazil's fun loving, passionate, and upbeat culture so I didn't expect them to portray something they weren't. They had two angles to showcase their culture, and that was either the traditional route, or the modern route and I'm glad they chose the modern route. They played to their strengths and highlighted what the world is familiar with Japanese pop culture. Mario is arguably the most famous video game character ever created and it was nice to see them play that 1 up (pun intended). While the segment didn't exactly show anything groundbreaking, I was very entertained and I thought everything oozed a very cool Japan from the music, the set pieces, the costumes, the dancing, the choreography, to all the pop culture references. I think of Japan and Korea to be culturally similar almost like the US and Canada, but Tokyo delivered a high energy show that had a totally different feel from Pyeongchang's very dull ceremony.
  5. I think it would be a great idea to make the Olympic schedule flexible according to the host city up to 4 weeks. It would alleviate the need for multiple venues especially when they need to be constructed from ground up. There's 2 aquatic stadiums in Rio's Olympic park, which is unnecessary since water polo can be played in the same pool as the swimming events, but due to lack of time within the 2 week Olympics window is why there's 2 separate venues I'm guessing? With a 4 week schedule you'd have plenty of time to use the same venues for multiple sports. Besides the sports that require their own facilities such as equestrian, bmx cycling, beach volleyball, canoe slalom, etc. which are mostly outdoors and temporary, sports that require more permanent facilities can be shared when split into two separate rotations. Instead of week 1 and week 2, the schedule should say first half and second half so it can be split from up to 3 or 4 weeks. Gymnastics can have first half and basketball can have second half using the same arena, so can indoor volleyball and handball, swimming and water polo, even the velodrome can use their center field for the lesser attended sports in separate halves. I think any strain on a host city with the extended schedule is naturally offset because the events are more dispersed (time wise). This would also prevent a lot of white elephants.
  6. I think London was riding this timely wave of positive press and worldwide attention leading up to 2012 regarding everything British such as the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, Will and Kate's wedding, and British artists such as Adele and One Direction garnering a media love fest. Public interest of British pop culture was high in 2012 and the London Olympics was the crest of it all, even Harry patiently waited til after the Olympics for another scandal when he showed the world his bum. Brazil on the other hand has been riding the opposite wave of negative events and media attention regarding their country and the Olympics in general leading up to 2016. From public backlash, recession, Zika fears and polluted waters on the Brazil end to bid cities dropping out, ballooning costs of hosting, and doping scandals on the Olympic end, it's been a perfect storm. So all in all, public interest has been soured toward Brazil and these Olympics, which could be causing the lower viewership. Just as Sydney and London mirrored in execution and legacies from their Olympics, it looks like Brazil has so far taken the Athens route (delayed construction, empty seats, economic and political turmoil) and we'll just have to wait and see what the post Olympics has in store, but so far during the games just as Athens did, Rio is pulling it together. I think come 2024 whether it's Paris or LA, after a tiring 3 consecutive games in Asia, the Olympics will have a different, probably less celebratory but more optimistic tone with renewed public interest.
  7. There's an empty lot in Century City along Avenue of The Stars that sits right on top of a future Metro Purple Line that's the exact size just for an arena, probably not enough to add a parking garage though. There's a proposal for an office building on that site but I assume the land can be sold and repurposed.
  8. I don't think the Inglewood stadium would be good for ceremonies. It's already in the direct path of the LAX runways and it's gonna be sunken about 100 feet or so to accommodate that. The ceremonies might be a little too distracting for flights coming in, the bright lights on game days are nothing compared to the visual mayhem of Olympic Ceremonies, plus how would they incorporate fireworks? I think the Coliseum location is perfect for ceremonies especially with Downtown LA as the backdrop, it just needs a lot of TLC. The Inglewood site however would make for a great backup Olympic village in case Piggyback Yards fall through, that is unless their timeline for the residential part of the project is well underway. In that case, I would suggest Taylor Yards a few miles up the LA River from Piggyback.
  9. I like the idea of finding local Olympians for the cauldron lighting and final torch run. The William sisters would make good candidates but I'd really like to see Misty May and Kerri Walsh considering they played a sport LA is most recognized for and originated there. They're more associated with Olympics than the William sisters are. Also, Greg Louganis would make a better choice than Caitlyn Jenner if they're thinking about making a "statement".
  10. What is even more amusing is before the IOC vote in 2005, NY2012 stated their commitment to bid again for 2016 and possibly even 2020. That was an unfair tactic to use as one of their selling points during the domestic race against SF, they said they were in it for the long haul, but after placing 4th in the IOC vote their tune suddenly changed. I believe every city has a right to change their mind and do what's best for their city, I just don't like misleading statements especially when it works to their favor and then back out when things don't go their way...hence, "big boy pants"! To be fair, Chicago never mentioned bidding again and the IOC clearly had an agenda against the USOC during the 2016 vote that Chicago got caught in the middle of so I understand why they stayed away. I just think there's a missed opportunity because Chicago is an amazing city that tends to get overlooked and the Olympics would truly bring the city it's shining moment, at the same time reinvigorating the parts of Chicago that are depressed.
  11. After seeing the bid book, I'm disappointed they removed Long Beach entirely from the venue plan. I think that's a shame because Long Beach would've been a visually pleasing backdrop for the water events. The Marine Stadium would've been great for rowing as well as sailing alongside the Queen Mary. Along with that came the events at the Long Beach Convention Center and Long Beach Arena. I know Long Beach feels isolated from the region, but this is a lost opportunity because Santa Monica is the only beach city in the bid now with just a few events and it would've been nice to showcase more than one beach city, as LA is known to be heavily influenced by it's beach communities. I think the organizers wanted to keep as many events as possible within LA city limits and with the help of some reshuffling, the Long Beach cluster was pretty much sacrificed in favor of the Valley cluster as to not make the venue clusters appear too spread out, and probably so they wouldn't disappoint 1/3 of LA's population. This was an inferior move imo, who would trade Long Beach over the Valley? Hopefully they'll revise this aspect of the bid down the line.
  12. New York and Chicago are the only options better than LA, but neither city seem to have big boy pants after being rejected during their respective turns. No more Atlanta's in the foreseeable future!
  13. Union Pacific owns that lot which is currently a rail yard called the piggyback yard. It's an ideal location sitting next to the LA River near Union Station, which is practically LA's crossroads for all major transit lines (perfect for an Olympic Village). The ones in charge of restoring the LA River, Army Corps of Engineers intend to include that lot as part of the restoration project, however, Union Pacific is holding off selling the property for a higher valuation which is putting the restoration project out of budget and on hold. The LA River project will be funded by the feds, state and city, so to answer your question yes, it's safe to say the land won't be sold anytime soon on current terms and still be waiting for the Olympics all the way til 2025 (The 2032 Olympics selection year). The piggyback yard is about 120 acres so it's the right size for an Olympic Village. Downtown LA is currently experiencing a housing boom so that land will be very valuable in the future, however that's not the case right now because Downtown LA has so many smaller empty lots in other ideal locations available for developers to grab. No developer would be willing to prop up 10,000 - 15,000 all at once in Downtown LA's current maturity level unless there's a need to get that many units ready all at once in one location, which is what an Olympics would do. So the Olympics would really be the catalyst to get the ball rolling on LA River's restoration and the icing on the cake for downtown LA's resurgence.
  14. I guess LA's Olympic motto is..."if at first you don't succeed(1), try(2), try(3) again", literally!
  15. When you think about it, the US is 1 out of only 3 countries to ever host the modern SOG in multiples cities. Countries like Japan and England tried bidding with second tier cities and failed but sending their Alpha cities for repeat performances managed to be successful. I'd say only Canada, Spain and China could join the list of multiple host cities in the near future but primarily because they have bigger cities than the ones that have already hosted. Despite America's wealth of capable cities, and Atlanta being that test subject, the Olympics of this generation have become too big and extravagant for those smaller cities to cope with the expenses and needs for new stadiums and infrastructure to accommodate such a short term event especially without federal backing. Until New York and Chicago gets it's act together, I think it's safe to say that LA is the Olympic city of this country the same way London, Tokyo and Paris is for their respective countries. I would've imagined NY to have been that city, ironically the city's most famous landmark carries a torch, but in typical NY fashion, I guess the city is just too busy.
  16. The USOC squandered their opportunity when they chose Boston! I saw this coming right from the very start. It gave Paris the chance to gauge their competition, after seeing two tier cities like Boston and Hamburg joining a lukewarm Rome bid, Paris knew they had this in the bag and chose to dive in. I'm not implying that Paris would've stayed out if LA was originally chosen but Paris and the French OC was very noncommital until they knew what they were up against because after 3 failed attempts, you don't come back unless you're certain you're going to win and LA was the only one that would've posed a major hurdle from the beginning. LA can always throw the "been there done that" card right back at Paris (and London and Tokyo, not to mention Beijing if they win). Now Paris has the advantage and momentum, the USOC is in disarray, picking LA as a back up candidate will have to play catch up and just looks like the USOC trying to save face to the IOC, and now opinions have been formed and the damage is done. I don't think LA or any other American city will have a good chance of winning 2024 at this point but I still think LA is the US best option. LA's ability to come up with a viable bid was never a concern, LA knows they have the Olympic blueprint any other bid city wish they had. As I said before, LA has the backstory that can carry the emotional aspect of a bid (a huge factor for Rio), a lot of major infrastructure and redevelopment projects already in the works that can align with the Olympics and be portrayed as a "catalyst" for them if the IOC really wants to lay claim on helping build shiny new stuff. Certainly white elephants will not be an issue since LA is the quintessential Olympic ready city, with loads and loads of newer venues already constructed (and more to come) so this will look far different than '84. Traffic will not be an issue as well, anyone who thinks it will can look up carmaggedon. I think a 2024 bid for LA will basically be a warm up bid for 2028. LA won't be like NY or Chicago that will take the rejection badly, they will bounce back and try again as they have been on the domestic front time and time again. I don't see a South African bid as a major contender then. Rio being a huge eye opener and caused enough headaches for the "new frontier" backers to last a generation. I think the biggest challenge a US 2028 bid may come from Toronto should Paris get 2024 (just give it to them!). I think we've come to the point that mega cities are the only ones capable of hosting an event of this magnitude without requiring an enormous amount of new infrastructure and that's why you've seen tried and tested cities like London and Tokyo succeeding as repeat hosts and most NOC's wising up and putting their best and biggest cities forward. This ain't the 90's or early 00's where second or third tier cities like Atlanta were the norm and had a respectable chance of winning. The scale of the Olympics have multiplied since then so I don't understand what the USOC was thinking when choosing Boston. I've never been there, it seems like a very charming city, but it obviously doesn't have the capacity to accomodate an Olympics without major new construction throughout the region and that's what scared residents if they were to be on the hook. The Big Dig was big enough! The USOC at this point should only consider the 4 cities that can handle and stand against all the other mega cities from any country and they are NY, Chicago, SF and LA. I would put an asterisk on SF though because it might just be Boston 2.0 XL. If none of the four are up to task, then sit it out, basically any other city would be a waste of time.
  17. I think people tend to overlook how important the legacy aspect of a bid is when getting to that final pitch to the IOC voting group. How the Olympics can have a lasting impact on the host city/country and vice versa. It's how London beat out Paris, and how a risky Rio bid beat out the safe Madrid, Tokyo and Chicago bids. I'm actually impressed at Boston's venue plan, it's compactness and connectivity is a big plus. I still think getting people around Boston's confusing street layouts will be challenging but seeing how compact the venues will be, focusing on walkability could be advantageous. It's a fairly solid plan if it weren't for all the temporary venues. What the USOC failed to see however are the intangibles. What legacy will the Olympics leave in Boston and what legacy will Boston leave the Olympics? That's where I see the missed oppoortuntiy was by not choosing LA, which is currently undergoing a wave of transformation. It would've set a new model for the Olympics (again) by focusing on sustainability and the use of existing venues, most of which weren't yet built during the '84 games. Plus, restoring the LA River would've been a huge stamp for the Olympics. But now that Boston is the one moving forward, we'll just have to see what the bigger European cities come up with especially what their legacy plans are. Boston seems to be on its way towards a referendum like most of the bidding European cities so it looks like Boston isn't a sure bet.
  18. Congrats to Boston! I guess it kinda makes sense, in order for the USOC to compete against European cities they have to present the most European looking city of the bunch (more so than SF imo). If they wanna win, they gotta play the game. I guess we'll just have to wait and see which other cities are bidding and see how Boston stacks against them but this might either be a genius move on the USOC's part or fall completely flat. On the other hand, it also won't be a complete disappointment if they don't win unlike New York and Chicago's bid, both those cities were dealt a crushing blow after losing especially Chicago. I'm just not convinced with Boston being the best bid the US can put forward. I think the city is too compact with narrow and confusing street grids, the opposition is too strong, and the big dig has shown how difficult major construction projects can be to accomplish there but Boston is the only city of the 4 I haven't been to, and I've been to Chicago and New York as well so it's the only city I really can't compare. I haven't been able to find Boston's venue plan online so I'm really curious to see what gave Boston the edge.
  19. I think the most important part of this news article is the fact that the SF bid is now changing their plans (or coming up with a plan from a temporary T&F stadium in Brisbane to a permanent stadium in Oakland that will be intended as the future home for the Raiders. However, they're not exactly clear on who's going to spend for this, as Oakland's mayor is making it clear in that article that they don't want to put money on "hosting an event". It's hard to tell how the USOC will look at this, it could be a good thing that SF has other options, but it could look bad in a sense that SF's bid doesn't have a clear cut plan. We don't have to wait long to find out!
  20. The EU isn't one big political entity, but they are financially. The Greek debt crisis and bailout surely had a major effect on the EU as a whole and became a trickle effect. I won't say the Olympics were to blame, but it surely contributed against Greece's financial well being. Because of Europe's rather complex economic system, the countries are sort of tangled together, and so as one goes the rest follows. I don't think the European people can be as quickly fooled by the IOC these days to believe that hosting the Games won't lead to debt. I agree that the 2024 Games won't be felt until afterwards obviously, but their decisions now is the act of planting that seed for the future. It's all about righting the ship from here on out starting with Tokyo. Rio is still a result of the vanity within the IOC believing they were too big to fail considering Brazil already committed to the World Cup. But I think the European populace, not the governments, understand the Olympic Games as a big money trap that leads to huge debt and white elephants, and that's why European governments continue to proceed with bids while the electorate quickly turn them down. If Tokyo manages a successful games, I think it will restore Europeans faith in hosting, which is why I think 2028 will be perfect for Europe, but what LA can bring for 2024, I think it will create a lot of excitement and optimism for the Olympic movement all over again the same way LA did last time, showing other cities how hosting the games can have a positive transformative affect without breaking the wallet. And that will be felt decades on out. Just my opinion.
  21. I would attribute that more towards the wealth of the region than the level of passion the fans have for sports. If we were to use population as criteria, then Green Bay would whoop SF Bay any day on both fronts. A city of 100,000 with a metro of 300,000 filling up a 80,000 seat stadium to capacity week after week in one of the worst weather conditions, mad props to them! Levi's Stadium has shown that money can't always buy home field advantage. America's Cup was a great example, since it's an international event, the city was able to showcase it's ability of hosting an event similar to the Olympics but on a much smaller scale. It was rather disappointing, everytime I went I'd come across a bunch of Kiwis strongly supporting Team New Zealand, a country with a population about half the Bay Area, Team USA didn't seem to have much of a home field support, most people just went about their business, there really wasn't any excitement over it. I read somewhere that a lot more people were upset with Larry Ellison being a no show for Oracle's Convention happening in Moscone Center a few blocks away the exact same time as the race, where he was present as sponsor. Given that Larry chose another site for the next America's Cup after being held in SF says a lot about that event's outcome. The city ended up with a $10-20 million deficit, and some are asking Larry to fork up that money so that taxpayers wouldn't have to pay for it. So imagine that times 30 which is what the Olympics in SF would be. I don't get why people think the IOC would be quick to kiss Europe's behind after what they did. They practically got shunned by an entire continent, it wasn't an isolated incident, country after country holding referendums and they all concluded that the Olympics in it's current state is a drawback for their region. So now we're left with 2 bids that were once considered longshots, in a continent that will now host back-to-back-to-back Olympics for the first time, so geopolitics is out the door for this one. From a business perspective, which is practically what the IOC is, that just doesn't make sense. What would make sense from this point on is to go with a tried and tested city with a lot of experience and a lot of success, while the Olympic brand repairs it's reputation. Do you go with a client that will give you a set of conditions (European NOC's) or a client who's willing to meet your conditions (USOC)? France and Germany are both expected to have referendums for 2024 before proceeding with a bid so that still shows a lack of confidence in the organization. If the USOC goes with LA, I think the IOC will take it as an opportunity to showcase to future host cities once again that the Olympics can prove to be a cost benefit venture. Europe will be back at the forefront for 2028, and the "new frontier" can get another shot after that.
  22. Math didn't seem to work in Paris's favor against London for 2012. That's 88 years gap versus 64. I don't think this whole geopolitics thing is strongly in play for the moment. The IOC is undergoing damage control right now and I don't think they have the luxury of playing "catch me if you can". FOUR European cities just dropped out of the 2022 race which got the IOC on their heels and in a panic. Despite their natural allegiance to Europe, I don't think they're as gung ho about going back to Europe this time around as everyone would think after what happened. Ever since the LA games in '84, the IOC has never had to lure cities to host the games until now, it was always the other way around. I'm sure they're leaning more towards a safe bet than a risky one. Which also makes me believe that the IOC isn't all that enthusiastic to go to a new territory so soon either. Selecting Rio hasn't been the breath of fresh air the IOC was hoping for with all the construction delays, pollution, protests and cost overruns so far adding to the negative press. With the revenue deal between the USOC and IOC, I think the USOC has done what it can to get their relationship back on track so the US is in a very strong position to win 2024 with the right city. I don't think either Boston or DC have much momentum going for their bids right now. Boston doesn't have the infrastructure to handle the capacity of an Olympics and the local opposition is a definite negative and a reminder of 2022. DC will always have a lot of liabilities I'm sure everyone's aware of. I used to be a strong supporter of an SF bid, I grew up there so I know the city well, but the recent times I've visited the city made me realize that an Olympics in SF and the Bay Area would be a logistical nightmare. Not to mention the changing demographic in the city being more interested in computers than sports. I went to see The America's Cup a few times last year and the locals didn't seem that excited about it. The winning team, which happened to be Larry Ellison of Oracle Bay Area, gets to choose the venue for the next race in 2017 and instead of going back to SF, chose to move the competition to Bermuda, so that's a little telling. The people in LA on the other hand have always embraced sports and fitness as an important aspect of life as well as any city in the world. Everyone talks about how 40 years is too soon, but guess what? Beijing has a 50/50 chance of hosting 2 Olympics within 14 years! Albeit different seasons but still. Both England and Japan went with previous bids from other cities but only won with London and Tokyo. The US is fortunate to have many great cities capable of hosting the Olympics but LA just happens to be the one city that fits the mold extremely well. I would've preferred Chicago or New York as first time hosts but that's not an option now and I think LA is the best city in this bunch of 4. LA also has a strong case going for it against other cities, since a good back story is always needed. It's a city currently undergoing a major transformation regardless, and we all know the IOC likes to put their stamp on revitalizing communities as their legacy. From the rebirth of downtown, to brand new parks popping up everywhere, revitilizing the LA River, brand new bridges being built or replaced and the ongoing expansion of new rail lines, most notably one that will link to LAX projected to complete by 2024 (coincidence?), the Olympics would fit in seamlessly with all the construction already happening. There have been so many new stadiums and arenas built the past couple decades as well, and recently an NFL owner (The Rams) hinting at building a new stadium in Inglewood and returning to LA in the near future, so the games will definitely have a "new" feel to it with mostly new venues while staying within a decent budget as the IOC now expresses as priority. Most importantly, people in LA strongly support the Olympics from all levels of government to the local population, it's a city the IOC and visitors will feel welcome in as they have before. A few years ago I didn't think it would happen but the stars could align for LA again. This is quite frankly a no brainer, which is probably why the USOC was so quick to choose a city, but I could be wrong. We'll see in a couple days.
  23. 2024 is LA's to lose in the domestic front. NY and Chicago are no longer interested in bidding, Boston is too compact, DC has the disadvantage of being the nation's capital with security a major issue, and the SF Bay Area is a logistical nightmare and cooperation between cities remains a challenge. All other cities lack the international cache. I know everyone feels like LA is another been there done that, but London and Tokyo being so close to each other disproves the idea that the IOC is constantly looking for new frontiers. In fact I think the tide is beginning to turn with budgets blowing out of proportions, too many white elephants being the lasting legacy in some cases, even countries going bankrupt. Countries craving to be in center stage have recently gone too far over the top, and I think the IOC is starting to see that a back to basics approach is the way to go during these times, and if Oslo wins the 2022 Winter Games, that's even more obvious. LA already has a lot of goodwill within the IOC, LA has a lot of legacy projects that could be expedited with an Olympics, and LA is that rare city that is both developed but still developing. From rail lines being expanded, airports getting renovated, bridges getting rebuilt or replaced, downtown cores getting revived, freeways being capped with parks, and a river that's in thirst of being rejuvenated, there are so many things an Olympics can and will put it's stamp on. The recent revenue deal between the IOC and USOC cleared the path for an American city to have a fair chance and the field of cities interested in 2024 doesn't seem to be that strong so this is the biggest window of opportunity the US has had in recent years. Most importantly, LA has always had strong support from the city for their bids regardless of its chances. Most venues are already in place, a lot of them newer ones built since '84. LA always has the memorial coliseum as backup for T&F and ceremonies but efforts to bring the NFL back to LA has picked up steam in recent years, those proposals came up short but the Olympics could be the catalyst for that happening. The NFL has expressed their interest in Chavez Ravine alongside Dodger stadium as their preferred site as opposed to the downtown stadium AEG proposed next to Staples. A temporary T&F stadium could be built that would be converted to football. Chavez Ravine is near what would be a great site for an Olympic Village right next to Union Station above the railyards along the LA river. That area is already being proposed for future development and there's a lot of potential for green space in that area which is exactly what LA needs. Another great location for an Olympic Village and/or a satellite cluster of venues would be in Inglewood where Hollywood Park racetrack just closed last year. That's a huge amount of land that just became available in an area not too far from the center of the region. Besides The Forum recently being renovated next door, it's the perfect location for equestrian, BMX and other outdoor events. There's a lot more that makes LA the appealing and logical choice for the Olympics. Traffic won't be a concern, LA already had 2 carmageddons and those went extremely well. NY, Chicago and SF would've all been ideal but the timing never seemed to be right with those cities. LA just happens to end up as America's Summer Olympic City, it always has been.
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