OK, let me say from the outset, I was an Olympic sceptic. If I had met one more person who told me how great it was to see the bloody torch I swear I would have head-butted them. There wasn't an Olympic torch, there were bloody thousands of them. Like Trigger's broom in Only Fools and Horses, with a dozen handles and six new heads… it wasn't exactly an original experience. Follow that with all the stuff about how crap G4S were, problems forecast for transport and cock-ups with tickets or empty seats, And I was fair fed up with the whole thing well before the opening ceremony (I kept up a 100% record of never ever seeing an opening ceremony – only getting home in time to hear McCartney squawking like a cat with a hernia).
Added to which I've never really taken as much interest in the Olympics as the World Athletics tournament. I think the Olympics are great for fans of fencing, table tennis, judo and badminton, but there is actually a reason they are minority sports, and don't even get me started on horse dancing, or whatever they call it (give the horses a medal and the riders a lump of sugar, say I).
But… I'm a convert! Wiggo and his mates started all the excitement by winning Le Tour the week before the games started, and for the cyclists it has been a sparkling couple of weeks in the Olympic velodrome. But almost everywhere you look, even the horse dancing, British kids have been doing their stuff. We even enjoyed avDaily Mail nightmare when a mixed race woman and a Somalian immigrant came up with GB gold on Saturday night. There must be something wrong when a cynical old git like me starts puffing his chest out with pride to see Brits on bikes doing so well in events that are the cycle equivalent of musical chairs, or biting my nails as the clay pigeon double shot bloke closed in on a gold medal.
I'm sure normal service will soon be resumed and we can get back to winning the gold in our national sport of whingeing and moaning. But for now, I for one say well done to those kids – the winners as well as those that didn't – who have worked their rocks off for years to try to get to the peak of their sport. Good on ya!