Victoria Summerley: How Mitt Romney made me love the Olympics
There's something about a smarmy Yank coming over here and criticising the way we run things that brings out the Little Britisher in all of us
Saturday 28 July 2012
OK, I give in – I have become an Olympic convert. A very late one, I admit, and one still prone to the odd rant about Olympic lanes and the Voice of Boris, which currently harangues commuters about planning their journeys on Tube, train and bus. (I got a blast of the London Mayor's recorded message on the way to work yesterday and it nearly made me jump out of my P D James.)
It took Mitt Romney finally to tip the balance. There's something about a smarmy Yank coming over here and criticising the way we run things that brings out the Little Britisher in all of us, I suspect.
Sure, I can whinge for the entire United Kingdom on the subject of Olympic bossiness, or sponsors, or special treatment for VIPs, or lack of tickets or, indeed, any of the controversies surrounding London 2012 that we have reported in i over the past few months. At times it looked as if the Games were going to be notable only for their ability to out-spoof the brilliant BBC Olympic spoof Twenty Twelve.
Then along came Mr Romney to cast aspersions, and I felt myself edging closer – in a purely metaphorical and possibly temporary sense, you understand – to David Cameron and Boris Johnson.
I don't care if Mr Romney was right. I don't care if he has experience of organising an Olympic event (although it now seems as if Washington had more to do with "saving" the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics in 2002 than the Republican presidential hopeful would like us to suppose.)
It's simply bad manners to come to someone else's country and start slagging them off. We're quite capable of doing that ourselves, thank you very much.
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