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Olympics which have faded into distant history


paul92

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So this quote from Sir Rols got me thinking...

Rome 1960 has drifted well back into the un-remembered games of history

Now, as some may have realised, I'm fairly young.

There are also some older people on this forum.

So where is the cut-off point for a 'Distant Games' - Olympics which have faded into distant history.

1952 - Helsinki, Finland

1956 - Melbourne, Australia

1960 - Rome, Italy

1964 - Tokyo, Japan

1968 - Mexico City, Mexico

1972 - Munich, West Germany

1976 - Montreal, Canada

1980 - Moscow, U.S.S.R

paul92

1984 - Los Angeles, United States

1988 - Seoul, South Korea

1992 - Barcelona, Spain

1996 - Atlanta, United States

2000 - Sydney, Australia

2004 - Athens, Greece

2008 - Beijing, China

2012 - London, United Kingdom

Does the cut-off point vary between people's ages or do we all agree there is a set number of years in which Olympic Games are still recognised as fairly modern/recent.

For myself, it is Moscow which have the 'long forgotten fee' to them.

So copy and paste the latest list below (or above if you're first) and add your name below the Olympics which you consider to be in forgotten history.

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LOL - it's all age. The oldest games I've seen any personal reflections posted about here are Mexico's. Personally, it's the games from Munich on that I can talk about with some personal impressions. In my own mind, I probably classify games from Barcelona on as "recent". It's a shock, though, when I realise we've many posters here who weren't even born for Barcelona! Sheesh, I've started seeing posts here recently from new members who already consider Sydney in the "old history" stakes!

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For me the first Games were LA 84, but I'd say that the 'distant' Games are LA 32 and earlier. There's so much documented about the Berlin Games because of the historic association with Nazi Era and the Games after WW2 benefit from the increased size and importance of the Games plus more film footage. The Games of Munich and Montreal were sort of an 'end of an era' Games as we moved from the Games of simple ceremonies/traditions toward bigger things like technology, sport science, grander architecture and more political intrigue and impact. And then from Moscow 1980 onward they just seem to get bigger, grander with more pomp and broadcast. There are certainly moments and athletes from the pre-Berlin era that stand out - the first Games in Athens, Jim Thorpe in Stockholm and the Chariots of Fire inspiring Paris Games of 1924 - but they do have less influence on today's Games.

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The first Olympics was Sydney 2000. Everything before that is just stuff written in the history books.

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I'd also classify the Barcelona 1992 Games onwards as recent. The first Games after the Cold War lending to a more festive atmosphere, the disappearance of East Germany, the inclusion of South Africa, the start of the decline of other former Eastern powerhouses like Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary while it's the start of China's rise to the top, the first of nighttime ceremonies, a more professional presence with NBAers in basketball.

Looking back further into history, I'd classify the pre WW2 Games (1896-1936) as one era, the 1948-1988 Games as another era, and 1992-onwards as a third era.

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For me, I have strong direct memories back to Montreal, and I've seen enough coverage back to Toyko that I have a very good feel for them. Rome and prior are all anciet history.

But to answer the question literally, Nagano is an Olympics that have *faded* into history for me. I watched. But I struggle to remember anything about this. I can't visualize a single venue, image of Nagano itself, ceremony, event etc.

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In terms of "caring" about the Olympic Games, I have two distinct cut-off points (winter and summer)

  • Winter: Lillehammer 1994
  • Summer: Barcelona 1992

I have to add, though, that I wasn't particularly interested in the Winter Olympics in Nagano. Ah well...

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I guess "distant history" for me is 1950's or earlier. Then up to about 1988, not recent but not distant history. "Recent" for me is 1992+. So anything within the last 20 years. My first memories of watching the Olympics was 1968 Grenoble, and I think part of the fascination was it was one of the first times I'd ever seen a color TV. (OK you incredulous young pups, some of us are old enough to remember when TV's were all vacuum tube, black-and-white with 13 channels on the dial and rabbit ear antennae, and color TV's were very uncommon!). Interestingly though, I don't remember anything about the 1968 Mexico Olympics which was later in the year. Munich was the first Summer Games that I have a lot of continuous memory about watching.

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This is of course by no means a scientific classification but I'd say that the modern era for me is the last half a century so there would be a line between Rome and Tokyo even if officially modern era means the whole present day Olympic movement from the first Athens games onwards. Everything before 1930's is ancient, although one could argue that LA '32 belongs to that ancient category as well. On the other hand, Barcelona onwards is recent, there were many things that changed between Seoul and Barcelona. So, my rank would be: Ancient or historic 1896-1928, old 1932-1960, modern 1964-1988, recent 1992-

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I remember watching swimming from Munich when I was 4 years old, I just had no idea of its significance then. 1976 are a total blank. Lake Placid was when my interest took off, also the first time I went to bed crying after the flame was extinguished. Anything from Sarajevo on seems like just yesterday. By Calgary I had stopped the crying after the CC, I didn't want my college roommates to think I was strange or something.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The first Games I remember were 1984 in Los Angeles, but for reasons that some others have hinted at, I tend to also regard Olympics in eras:

The modern era: 1992 onwards. A step change, as the USSR and Eastern bloc had disintegrated from its old form, and the systematic drug performance enhancement programmes of those former countries likewise. An optimism that the world could become a more peaceful place, with the new world coming together for the Games.

1980(or 1976) to 1988: Boycotts and drug enhanced performance dominating, but also the Olympics on a much grander scale than previously.

Up until 1972 (or 76): Somewhat simpler, but no less memorable.

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I remember watching swimming from Munich when I was 4 years old, I just had no idea of its significance then. 1976 are a total blank. Lake Placid was when my interest took off, also the first time I went to bed crying after the flame was extinguished. Anything from Sarajevo on seems like just yesterday. By Calgary I had stopped the crying after the CC, I didn't want my college roommates to think I was strange or something.

LOOOOOL Nice story

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Sarajevo and LA were the first serious Olympic memories for me as I witnessed how the range of coverage that was from ABC, which of course has only evolved from there, among other things. Didin't get into Sarajevo as much as I did with LA though. But I did watch a very nice bunch of that in many sports--principally into the hockey back then. Moscow could've been were it not for the fact of the US-led boycott, which actually those Games still fascinates me to this day obviously. Politics and all. I still likely have been too young to remember much stuff from that. Thank goodness for YouTube videos of them. Up to 1984, I managed to watch Olympic programming on TV like the Road To Los Angeles, Bud Greenspan's The Olympiad, Olympic sponsor TV commercials. Four years later in 1988, I started buying several Olympic books from bookstores like the 1988 edition of the Complete Book of the Summer Olympics to further deepen my appreciation and love of them.

Gradually, I do learn or see something about the ones up to Montreal. I know and read about some of the basic things about them and saw some videos over the years as I became enthralled about the Olympics. London 1948, for example, surely got a boost in interest now because of this year's London Olympics

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