The 72-inch widescreen TV has been on 24/7 in the Boom Boom Room as Phillipe and Jorge — clad in togas, with laurel crowns on our heads, and faux medals made from the tops of yogurt containers around our necks — have paid rapt attention to the London Olympics, with occasional naps when the USA basketball team games are shown.
Naturally the main object of our attention has been Little Rhody's own Queen Elizabeth, Liz Beisel, who won a silver medal in the 400-meter individual medley to cheers that could be heard statewide. It was her personal best on the world's biggest stage, and we hope that everyone is as proud of her as P&J are.
The fact that the gold medal winner in the race was China's 16-year-old peewee Ye Shiwen, who not only surpassed her personal best by an eye-popping five seconds, but swam the freestyle leg faster than men's gold winner Ryan Lochte and set a world record shouldn't be questioned by anyone.
P&J of course believe the explanations offered in her defense: Ye has large hands and feet (that proves it!), has great coaching from an elite group of international mentors hired by the Chinese (oh, OK), and eats her wonton Wheaties. While Ms. Beisel has been overly gracious in giving Ye her due, more than one analyst has suggested that our Chinese friends have been up to their hijinks of the 1990s, when they were juicing their swimmers at a rate that would have made the former East German athletic Stasi whinny with envy. That time, they got caught.
While this controversy continues to bubble below the surface as Cool, Cool World goes to print, we owe Liz Beisel loud applause and gushing admiration for an incredible effort that done all of us Vo Dilunduhs proud.
MITT THE TWIT
While Ye provided a scandal on the athletic front, we had Mitt Romney to thank for the political contretemps. He suggested that London wasn't properly prepared for the Olympics. That led to a fast and furious reply from England's Prime Minister David Cameron, who suggested it was easy to run an Olympics in the "middle of nowhere," a jab at Mitt's much-ballyhooed rescue of the 2002 Winter Games in Salt Lake City.
That launched a wonderful frenzy in the British press, which makes the National Enquirer look like the New York Times. Headlines referred to the Mittster as "Nowhere Man" and "Mitt the Twit." And as a letter to the editor at Private Eye, the British satirical mag pointed out, "Mitt Romney" is an anagram of "My, I'm rotten." Mitt, in short, showed once again that his purported presidential timber is more like balsa wood.
The opening ceremony generally got panned for its bizarre industrial revolution-cum-"Glastonbury Tor"-cum-Mary Poppins motif. But the Brits always take these occasions to show they have read some books in their time and were around for a lot longer than we upstart Yanks. While trotting out Sir Paul was a nice salute to the Beatles, it's a good thing that his hand-clapping sing-along to "Hey Jude" only required the athletes to repeat "na-na-na-na-na-na-na." Chances are, 99 percent of them knew none of the lyrics, having been born more 20 years after the song's debut.