Olympic Side-lights

STAY WITH ME! I am not writing about 2021 Olympic high-lights. I’m sure you have more than enough of those. Instead, I’m sharing bits and pieces of trivia that occurred to me while watching the games. These are my Olympic side-lights.

For instance, did you know that the Tokyo 2020 Olympic medals are made from recycled phone parts? As a green eco-initiative the Olympic organizers collected old electronics, separated the precious metals and melted them down to create the 5,000 medals need for the games.

Screen capture from Glamour.dom link

Not only that, they also recycled household plastics and plastics from the ocean, to make the many podiums at the event.

Even some of the clothing was made with recycled material, including Naomi Osaka’s outfit during the opening ceremonies.

It reminds me that the Olympic are about more than sports. They have the potential to promote new trends and directions.

I experienced my first whitewater rafting adventure in the ’80s. I talk about it here but did you know that the sport was popularized by another Olympic event? The 1972 Munich Olympics introduced canoe and kayak slalom racing. That led to the popularity of whitewater sports, which in turn led me to my first of several rafting and kayaking adventures.

Then there was ’90s and the beginnings of the internet as we know it. It was the age of Web 1.0 aka as the read-only web. It was a place where businesses broadcasted information and only allowed users to search for content and read it. In those days, the world-wide-web was nascent technology and everyone was puzzling on “How do I make money on the internet?”

Back then, the company I worked for created the first online website selling tickets for the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. Afterwards, we took the ticket selling app, scaled it up and made it into a platform for large and successful e-commerce sites. That work and those sites kept me busy for most of the following decade.

This year’s Olympics introduced five new sport categories: baseball, karate, climbing, skateboarding and surfing. None of which I intend to try out, in any form, in any time soon. Of course, I have been and always will be ready to take pictures of anyone else doing it!

Ten years from now, I wonder what trends we’ll trace back to the 2020-21 Olympics? Care to make a guess? I’d love to hear!


  1. Most interesting, haven’t heard of the materials used. I knew about the new sports. Slovenia took the first gold in climbing for women. It was a wicked combined event made up of a vertical race (crazy stuff!!), free climbing quickies (they were untied for that and kept falling down onto the mattress!) and the final long endurance test. The Slovenian champion is a fun-loving girl called Janja who people call the Goat. 😀 I envision inclusion of bowling, bocce (pétanque), and with some luck cards, especially my game, tarock. Yeah! Need to train for that!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sport climbing is wild. My husband used to do rock climbing and years later, the kids took up wall climbing. I am vertigo challenged and I can only watch from the ground. Still, even watching the climbing on TV gives me the heebie-jeebies.

      If they can make video gaming an Oympic sport, I don’t see why tarock couldn’t be!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi. I spent several hours watching the Olympics last night. Four networks were broadcasting events. Great stuff. I hadn’t seen or thought about the hammer throw in decades, but there it was last night, along with so many other competitions. Really something.

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    1. The US networks always have the best coverage of the games! I had to look up ‘hammer throw’ because I was thinking of Thor &/or axe throwing which is not yet an olympic sport.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ten years from now the Olympics will be held in my city! I used to be a big fan but not any more. I do like that they are trying to be more eco – friendly, so I applaud that. I remember the 1972 Olympics well, just a child, at 10, it left an imprint on my memory – not least because of the controversy. I had that in my mind when I saw one Olympic stadium in Berlin for real.

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    1. There are a few Olympics that leave a lasting impression. Despite my anecdote, the Munich Olympics is historically significant because of the Munich massacre. I was too young & blithely unaware to remember them but it’s quite horrific to read about now.
      Who knows what the Brisbane Olympics will be remembered for .. by then, hopefully it will be a positive story on climate change. It’s certainly a goal to work to.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes who knows what the Brisbane Olympics will be renowned for. It is heartening to think it could be a positive story on climate change. You might be a bit younger than me, Sandy if you were blissfully unaware of the Munich massacre. Mind you, my mind was always in the news being a Modern History nut, even at 10 years of age.

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          1. I must have been bored with the books I had on hand. The other thing that soaked my interest was a promotion by service stations of posters from all the Olympic games. I began to collect them.
            Thia second Tokyo Olympic games might have been better to be postponed. They will forever be associated with the pandemic.

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