Tag Archives: London England

Countdown to London 2012…

Yesterday, our friend and fellow Olympics-nerd, James, mentioned on his Facebook page that the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England are due to begin exactly two years from now. Hooray! I know it’s a little early to set up a season pass on our Tivo — seriously, I would if I could — but, it’s never too early to start talking about the latest Olympic mascots!

Introduced to the world back in May, the official mascots for the London games are a pair of strangely-hideous, one-eyed blobs named Wenlock and Mandeville.

And while they are not nearly as cute as the Fuwa Friendlies from the Beijing games, or the epically-cool Quatchi and friends from the recent Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Wenlock and Mandeville do have a pretty interesting origin story, and the animated clip explaining it all (below) is even cooler!

I won’t spoil it for you by giving any of the plot away, but, their names do carry great meaning for folks in the UK and the story behind how they were “born” is really kinda cool. And on top of all that, the clip holds up very well on repeat views. We’ve watched it dozens of times already on YouTubeGreta is obsessed with the rainbows! — and I still get misty-eyed at the ending every time.

Anyway, though I probably won’t be dashing across the pond to buy plush figures of these new mascots (if they even come in plush!) when the games begin, I do heartily approve of them in concept.

So, check out the first of what I’m assuming will be many videos celebrating the world’s next big Olympic mascots…and by all means, let the countdown to London 2012 begin!

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Obama meets Oliver!

Hey, we’re just as excited as everyone else about President Barack Obama’s first trip to Europe as leader of the free world, and the G20 summit thing sounds cool and everything. But the big news in this household is who will be cooking for the Obamas in merry old England.

Jamie Oliver #1

You guessed it, amigos…our favorite male UK chef, Jamie Oliver, will be doing the honors at this year’s G20 Summit meeting in London. And while the official menu has yet to be announced, rumor is that Oliver is gearing up to serve the President and First Lady a simple meal of Welsh lamb, asparagus and flat bread with a side of English herb (aka wild garlic). Yum…sounds good to me.

And lest you think Oliver will be toiling all alone in that big old kitchen, fear not. Oliver is going to be helped along by a team of his apprentices from his iconic Fifteen Restaurant in London.

For those of you who missed Oliver’s rocking reality series “Jamie’s Kitchen” a couple of years back, Fifteen takes in unemployed, disadvantaged young people from around the country and trains them to be professional chefs. Cool, huh?

Jamie Oliver #2

Obama eating!

No word yet on whether the Obamas will have time to stop by the restaurant proper, but here’s hoping they find some time to chill with Jamie between courses. And though Oliver’s wife, the very pregnant Jules Oliver, will reportedly miss the event as it is taking place on her due date, word on the street is that both she and her husband are huge fans of our new President.

That’s right…even the English loves them some Obama. Rock on, Jamie O!

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