Monday, August 11, 2008

Checking Watches

I can't usually sit through the Olympics' entire Opening Ceremony. I find that I have a fairly low tolerance for contrived announcer drivel, as well as all the ridiculous downtime (the latter is why I am also unable to sit through awards ceremonies of any way, shape, or form).

But, as anyone who has met me knows, I'm a lush.

So when Tweedle Wit, the Caterpillar, and some of the other girls decided to have a party to drink red, white, and blue beverages of an adult nature, eat Chinese takeout, and watch the Opening Ceremony, I of course obliged.

I will say, the Beijing performances impressed me. They were visually stunning -- a feast of colors, lights, rich fabrics, and incredible costumes. We ooh'd and aah'd at all the appropriate times and sipped some CuraƧao-based cocktail that the girls called The Fishbowl.

We cattily judged each nation's sartorial selection as they paraded past our screen. From traditional garb to classic summer suits to fairly hideous matronly floral dresses with matchy-matchy hats, we were not in short supply of fashion police ammo.

We marveled at the fact that all stereotypes aside, some countries really are just full of freaking beautiful people. (Turkey, I'm looking in your general direction.)

We even mocked the announcers' ridiculously vapid commentary:

"China's main exports are silk... and... Chinese cultural values." Uh, seriously? "The ceremony is presented in three languages: French, English, and... China." Oh, come on. You can do better than that.

But the crowning moment of this particular Opening Ceremony happened while watching the camera pan over to President and Mrs. Bush as the different nations marched in. "Haha! Check out Laura's tacked-on smile! What a robot!" we declared. We noticed that to her left, the President was looking decidedly bored. We laughed, and Tweedle Wit diplomatically pointed out that he had likely gone straight from a thirteen-hour flight to some kind of PR whirlwind, and then on to the almost five hour Opening Ceremony. Fair enough, I thought. That probably is pretty rough... I'd be exhausted, too.

But then he upped the ante. He checked his watch.

Not even a subtle check, because we've all done that. You know, the I'm-Just-Looking-At-My-Shoe-But-Oops-My-Watch-Got-In-The-Way thing. This was a full-on, elbow-up, long stare. Come on, Georgie! After eight years, haven't you learned that the cameras are ALWAYS ON YOU? And that, perhaps, some liberal NBC cameraman might just try his damnedest to make you look like an asshole? HAVE YOU LEARNED NOTHING?!

Well played, liberal NBC cameraman. Well played, indeed.

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