Monthly Archives: August 2012
Kenya’s youth have largely been characterized as hedonistic generation of brand-obsessed youth, moving from party to party in the night and congregating on Facebook during the day – using TV, music and brands as our badges, our ID. We’re the Moi generation – the ones who grew up on the now-defunct “Maziwa ya Nyayo” school milk. We watched our parents root for and obtain multi-partyism, and we watched the country shrivel up and almost die under years of Moi’s rule.
We’re detached from the affairs of the country, they say – picking our addictions (which one will it be? Drugs, sex, TV, alcohol or God?) while the country burns. Perhaps it is true – what would you expect from a generation who are continuously referred to as “tomorrow’s leaders” in a country where people like one Mr. Kibaki have been in government for as long as Kenya has had a government? Tomorrow never comes, so we might as well carry on with our lives and forget about politics.
It is perhaps only when our country was set on fire that we began to see how deeply politics affects us. A few months later, we were paying hitherto-unheard-of prices for fuel, there was water rationing, and power rationing, and then food started to run out. Only then did many more of us realize that we can’t hide forever in the company of the Lil’ Wayne’s and Prison Breaks of this world. Perhaps it is only when our comfort zones were threatened that we realized that our leaders, our “Honorables” are self-obsessed, thieving, murderous idiots. Honorables, indeed.
And so we at Kuweni Serious – we’re a bunch of kids ourselves – have decided to go out there and find out: how do Kenya’s youth feel about all the chaos around us? Are we proud to be Kenyan or are we secretly wishing we could get green cards and disappear forever? Where shall we raise our own kids? Are we happy?
We intend to seek out all the young people out there who are trying to make sense of all this, the youth groups, the activists, the people who read the news and get so annoyed that they write angry status updates on Facebook, the students, the guys and girls who’ve just landed their first job and have been hit hard by the realities of the economy. We want your opinions, we want your stories. We don’t know what we’ll find, we might step on a few toes, but we’ll do our best.
Join Us. Kuweni Serious.
A tribute to Mo Farah for being a true Olympic Legend,
We love you Mo!
Excellent! Thankyou @Tom_Meshwork
Earlier this evening MoFarahRunningAwayFromThings hit One Million views!
Thank you to all the Mo fans who have made this possible!
To celebrate this occasion here is the most requested Suggest-A-Mo,
The popularity of this blog over the last few hours has been amazing!
Thankyou to all the Mofarahrunningawayfromthings fans for sharing this!
Thankyou to Mo, for being such a legend!
Inspiring a generation and running some cracking races!
hope you find this blog as funny as the rest of us
Congratulations team GB!
The best/funniest/weirdest moments from London in nice, little, animated packages.
1. Liu Xiang Hops To Finish His Race And Kisses The Final Hurdle
China’s Liu Xiang had won gold in the 110m hurdles in Athens, but since then had fought Achilles issues. At the first hurdle in London, he crashed and fell to the ground gripping the back of his foot. He began to hop off the track and down the tunnel before stopping, and turning back. He hopped the rest of the race, stopping only to kiss the final hurdle.
2. Shin A Lam Stands Defiant After Being Screwed Out Of A Chance For Gold
When a controversial ruling cost Korea’s Shin A Lam a chance at gold in the women’s individual épée fencing, she refused to leave the floor as that would be taken as a sign she accepted the ruling. So she filed an appeal and stayed on the piste for 45 minutes. When a judge came to tell her that her appeal had been denied, rather than go with him, she climbed back onto the platform and stood, defiant.
3. McKayla Maroney’s Jaw Dropping Vault
4. No Really, The Judge’s Jaw Dropped
5. Nick “I Look Like Zack Morris Or Every Single ’80s Movie Villain” Delpopolo
Delpopolo was later disqualified for testing positive for marijuana.
7. Fast And Furious Table Tennis!
8. Disappointed But Impressed Korean Archery Coach Is Disappointed But Impressed
9. Valentina Vezzali’s Awesome Fencing Celebration
10. Handball Death From Above (Or Definitive Proof That Handball Is Awesome)
11. The Weirdest Spanish Basketball Fan That Ever Existed
Is that a sausage in his mouth?
12. Infinite Olympic Trampolining!
13. The Most Important Moment Of The Opening Ceremony: That Guy Who Invented The Internet
14. The Second Most Important Moment Of The Opening Ceremony: James Bond And Corgis
15. The Only Important Part Of The Closing Ceremony: Posh Being Posh
16. When The US Men’s Basketball Team Wins, Coach K Is Happy
17. Rockstar Usain Bolt: Cause
18. Rockstar Usain Bolt: Effect
19. Prankster Usain Bolt
20. Hope Solo’s Monster Gold Medal Save
21. American Claressa Shields Knows How To Celebrate
22. Nic Batum Hates Juan Carlos Navarro’s Balls
23. The Brutal World Of Race Walking
24. Kobe And LeBron: BFFs
25. Let Me Show You The Dance Of My People: The Independent Olympic Athletes
26. The Surprisingly Awesome World Of Rhythmic Gymnastics
27. No Seriously, This Is Crazy
28. This Gymnastics Coach Doesn’t Know How To Make A Heart With Her Hands
29. Gabby Douglas Kicked Ass
30. Aly Raisman’s Gold Medal Floor Routine
31. This Is Michael Phelps’ Last Medal Ceremony So Hold His Hand
32. One Last Gold
33. Michael Phelps: Olympic Hero
Hearing the National Anthem from the podium one last time.
By Eurosport | London Spy – Sun, Aug 12, 2012 02:45 BST
Triple Olympic sprint champion Usain Bolt was in trouble with track officials again at the London Olympics when he tried to keep the baton from the 4×100 metres relay after the Jamaicans smashed the world record in the event.
After the relay, 100 and 200 champion Bolt could be seen talking animatedly to an official on the track before handing over the baton as the crowd booed.
“I got the baton back but at the start he was saying I couldn’t keep it because it’s the rule,” a smiling Bolt said.
“It was kind of weird because he actually told me that if I didn’t give it back I would be disqualified so I just gave it back to him,” he added to laughter.
“I took a picture with the guys, and I am going to frame the picture and put the baton below it – just something to remind me of London.”
The 25-year-old had apparently fallen foul of the rules earlier in the week when a skipping rope was taken off him before the 100 metres final.
Bolt told reporters he was going to smuggle it into the stadium but he was allowed to use the rope to warm up before the 200 semi-finals.
The Jamaican relay quartet of Nesta Carter, Michael Frater, Yohan Blake and Bolt blasted to victory in 36.84 seconds, knocking 0.2 off the world record they set at last year’s world championships.
“He took the baton because he wanted all of us to sign it because of what we have done tonight and what Britain has seen tonight,” team mate Blake told reporters.
“It is guys going to the next level of track and field in 4×100.”
As we celebrate the prowess of the new Olympic 800m champion and world record holder, David Rudisha, lets also celebrate one of his moments in front of the camera’s from the behind the scenes angle!
Not so fast, Usain. You’re not a “living legend” yet.
That’s the verdict of IOC President Jacques Rogge, who said Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt is an “icon” but needs to prove his greatness over more than two Olympics before he can claim legendary status.
“The career of Usain Bolt has to be judged when the career stops,” Rogge told a small group of reporters Thursday. “If you look at the career of Carl Lewis, he had (four) consecutive games with a medal.”
Rogge spoke a few hours before Bolt completed an unprecedented sprint sweep, becoming the first athlete to win the 100 and 200 metres at consecutive Olympics. Bolt took the 200 in 19.32 seconds, four days after he defended his 100 title with victory in 9.63.
Bolt has spoken repeatedly of his desire to become a “living legend” in London.
“Let Usain Bolt be free of injury,” Rogge said. “Let him keep his motivation which I think will be the case … Let him participate in three, four games, and he can be a legend. Already he’s an icon.”
Lewis won a total of nine Olympic gold medals from 1984-1996, including four consecutive titles in the long jump.
In Beijing four years ago, Bolt won the 100, 200 and 4×100 relay, all in world-record times. In Beijing, Rogge chastised Bolt for showboating and showing a lack of respect to his fellow competitors after his 100 and 200 races, comments which led to criticism of the IOC president for appearing to be out of touch.
Rogge said achieving Olympic success over a long period is crucial.
“What Michael Phelps has done in Beijing (eight gold medals) and what Usain Bolt has done now in the 100 metres and maybe in the 200 metres later this evening, this is something that you will not forget,” he said. “This is something exceptional. I think that achieving to win a medal in consecutive games is a great performance. The time factor is so important.”
Rogge cited British rower Steve Redgrave, who won gold medals at five consecutive Olympics, and British sailor Ben Ainslie, who won his fourth straight gold at these games.
“You have to be there, you have to be at the top for almost 20 years which is a great achievement,” he said.
Rogge, who competed in three Olympics for Belgium in sailing, said of Ainslie: “He’s now the greatest sailor of all time.”
Rogge spoke after attending the finals of women’s boxing, which made its debut on the Olympic program in London. He watched British flyweight Nicola Adams and Irish lightweight Katie Taylor win gold medals in front of a raucous crowd at the ExCel arena.
“It was fantastic,” Rogge said. ‘I’m a very happy man. There has been some criticism of whether women should be boxing and of their level and technique. Today we have been vindicated. That was a good decision. It’s only the beginning.”
Also attending was IOC vice president Nawal El Moutawakel of Morocco, the first woman from a predominantly Muslim nation to win an Olympic medal when she took gold in the 400-metre hurdles at the 1984 Los Angeles Games.
“The combat was beautiful,” she said. “It was a wonderful show. They were technical and highly skilled. This was very important, a huge step. It reminds me of my ’84 hurdles gold medal.”
For the first time in Olympic history, all national teams include female athletes. Rogge noted that Sarah Attar received a big ovation as she finished last in her 800-metre heat on Wednesday, the first woman from Saudi Arabia to compete in track and field at the Olympics.
“We’re fighting the right course,” Rogge said. “It’s a strong message that reverberates around the world. Young women will take up sport. These games will leave a great human legacy.”
With the closing ceremony of the London Games three days away, Rogge hailed the British crowds and said the atmosphere reminded him of the street scenes during the 2010 Vancouver Games.
“The crowds exceed my expectations,” he said. “I did not expect such a response.”
Rogge said the fervor was due in part to the success of the British team, which had won 24 gold medals and 51 total medals by the end of Thursday’s competition, its best performance in 100 years.
“It took two days to get the bronze medal,” he said. “From that start, what an acceleration.”
Rogge also recalled standing near an “amused” Queen Elizabeth II during the opening ceremony as they watched a film clip featuring the monarch and James Bond actor Daniel Craig. With a bit of movie trickery, the queen appears to parachute out of a helicopter into the stadium.
“I was watching on a video, and the queen was about 10 metres on my left side,” Rogge said. “She was watching the same video with a very amused smile on her lips. She knew everything of the plot. She was amused, if I may so.”
That was a play on the famous quotation attributed to Queen Victoria: “We are not amused.”
By Kurt Badenhausen, Forbes Staff
Usain Bolt entered the 2008 Summer Olympics as somewhat of a curiosity. Yes, he had recently set the world record in the 100-meter dash, but few people outside the track and field world knew much about the 6-foot-5 Jamaican. He had excelled at the 200-meter distance, but was relatively new to the 100-meter event. His only sponsors before Beijing were Puma, which signed Bolt to a small deal in 2003, and Digicel, a Jamaican mobile phone company.
Three gold medals and three world records later, Bolt left Beijing as one of the most famous athletes on the planet. He set records in the 100 and 200, becoming the first man to capture Olympic gold in both events since Carl Lewis in 1984. He was part of the 4×100 meter Jamaican relay team that shattered the world record on the way to another gold. Life has never been the same for the world’s fastest man.
20 images Photos: The Highest-Paid Olympic Athletes
Usain Bolt and the Peril When Your Status Rises Too High Frederick E. Allen Frederick E. Allen Forbes Staff
As Bolt’s fame soared, his paycheck took off as well. Bolt earned an estimated $20.3 million over the last 12-months from prize money, bonuses, appearance fees and sponsors. He ranks No. 63 among the world’s highest-paid athletes. Bolt has a ways to go to challenge LeBron James and Kobe Bryant in terms of earnings, but his income is more than 20 times what other elite sprinters typically make in a year and more than any other athlete in the history of track and field.
Bolt inked endorsement deals with Gatorade, Swiss watchmaker Hublot and Virgin Media after Beijing. Visa signed him to an agreement and splashed Bolt’s image on billboards across Europe, where track and field remains a popular sport. Visa is in position to use Bolt in ads during London as an official sponsor of the Olympic Games.
Soul Electronics signed a deal with Bolt this year and he will develop his own line of headphones for the company. He added a multimillion dollar pact in June with Nissan Motor, which plans to use Bolt in a global ad campaign. He released his autobiography, “9:58: Being the World’s Fastest Man,” in 2010, and another book is in the works for after London.
Bolt’s biggest paycheck comes courtesy of Puma, where he is the global face of the German sportswear company. Puma re-signed Bolt in 2010 to a deal worth $9 million annually. It is an astronomical sum for a track athlete and on par with what only a handful of the most marketable basketball, soccer and tennis stars receive from shoe and apparel contracts. In contrast, a massive Nike deal for a football or baseball player is $1 million.
Prize money in track and field is relatively paltry. Athletes compete each year in the Samsung Diamond League which is made up of 14 events around the world. Winners of individual races receive $10,000 with the year-end winner earning an additional $40,000. First place in the biennial World Championships is worth $60,000 and world records carry bonuses of $100,000 in that event. Bolt typically competes in 7 to 9 Diamond League events and earns additional sponsor bonuses based on his performances.
While prize money is small, Bolt’s ultimate running payday is often huge thanks to appearance fees. His fee starts at $200,000 and can reach $350,000 for a big meet. Bolt commands the huge sums because he guarantees a sellout when competing.
“Bolt is the highest-paid athlete in the history of track and field, but he’s also probably the most underpaid athlete in the history of track and field,” says Paul Doyle, a veteran track and field agent, in a Bolt story published last week in Sports Illustrated.
His appearance at the Penn Relays in 2010 resulted in the highest single day attendance (54,310) in the event’s 118-year history. Regarding the crowd’s reaction when Bolt started warming up, U.S. sprinter Mike Barber said, “It was so loud, I thought, ‘Is the President here?’”
20 images Photos: The Highest-Paid Olympic Athletes
Usain Bolt and the Peril When Your Status Rises Too High Frederick E. Allen Frederick E. Allen Forbes Staff
Bolt can command these massive sums of money because he has transcended the world of track and field the way Tiger Woods did in golf during his peak and Michael Jordan did in basketball.
The 100-meter final was the hottest ticket going into the Olympics. London 2012 organizers received more than one million requests for tickets for the event with prices set at $1,130, which is more than any other event. Bolt faced stiff competition from countryman Yohan Blake, who is the current 100-meter world champion after Bolt was disqualified from the race last year for a false start. Blake also beat Bolt at the Jamaican Olympic trials.
Bolt held off Blake and the field Sunday night to capture the gold in an Olympic record 9.63 seconds. He joins Carl Lewis as the only men to win consecutive gold medals in the 100-meter event. Maintaining his role as the world’s fastest man will allow Bolt to continue to command huge premiums in regards to his race appearance fees and endorsement contracts.
Kenya came into the London Olympics with high hopes, everyone confident that we would surpass the performance of Beijing four years ago where Team Kenya scooped six gold, four silver and four bronze medals.
But the pre-Games tension between the National Olympic Committee of Kenya and Athletics Kenya has thrown Kenya’s campaign to the dogs.
It is sad watching our sports officials, with their bloated egos, fighting turf wars at the expense of the country’s respected name and image.
Many will wonder just how Vivian Cheruiyot, the double world champion (5,000 and 10,000 metres) faded away badly in the opening day’s 10,000m final and indeed why London Marathon champion Mary Keitany failed to get a medal in the marathon last Sunday.
Questions arise from the women’s steeplechase debacle and the fact that we have just Hellen Obiri in Wednesday’s 1,500m semi-finals or how we failed to break the 44-year jinx in the men’s 10,000m.
Well the answer to these questions is simple: Our officials have let us down terribly and they must do the honourable thing and take the long walk away from managing sport in the country. Period.
Management abandoned officials
We raised the flag when a dozen officials from Kenya’s Olympics management team literally abandoned athletes to rush to a pre-season camp in Bristol that meant little in terms of quality preparations, especially for distance runners.
We saw Ezekiel Kemboi travel to Bristol, and then flee back home due to the atrocious conditions there, where the recalcitrant NOCK officials set up camp merely to rake in their $300-a-day allowances, totally ignoring the fact that serious competition awaited the team at the Olympic Stadium.
The tab was picked by the toiling taxpayer.
There was drama as Vivian’s husband and personal coach, along with one of the team’s coaches and doctor were locked out of the Olympic Village by the NOCK team led by executive officer Stephen arap Soi and general team manager James Chacha, leaving Vivian, our red-hot medal hope, in tears.
Vivian was shattered and it was hardly surprising that she failed to pick herself up and take the battle to Tirunesh Dibaba.
This didn’t bother Soi and his team who have misused the trust bestowed upon them by NOCK chairman, our legend Kipchoge Keino, who, as a respected member of the International Olympic Committee, is playing multiple roles here, delegating the management of Team Kenya to Soi, Chacha and company.
Vivian’s loss on Day One should have fired a wake-up call, but rather than address the issue, Soi and company continued with their personal wars with Athletics Kenya, declaring the AK chairman, Isaiah Kiplagat, persona non grata at the Olympic Village.
As the selfish turf wars continued, we lost the men’s 10,000m, where Wilson Kiprop, winner of the controversial trials in Oregon, pulled out with an injury that the Team Kenya officials knew about at the Kasarani camp but failed to address. What a shame!
AK’s decision to hold the trials in Oregon will seriously be questioned, as will Soi’s decision to lock out one of the team’s medics while knowing that some of the athletes, like steeplechaser Lydia Rotich, who is asthmatic, needed round the clock, personal medical attention.
Journalists critical of Soi and the NOCK management team have been declared unwanted guests at the Olympic Village, Soi’s team eager to sweep the management rot under the carpet as medals continue to, painfully, slip away from our grasp.
The issue of joyriders in Team Kenya hasn’t been addressed, while the rather unprofessional manner in which distribution of training and competition kit has been managed here continues to irk the athletes, with some of them, like swimmers Jason and David Dunford, taking no chances and purchasing their own strip.
As things stand here, Kenyans should be prepared for the worst, unless Prime Minister Raila Odinga, here for the final days of the Games, works out wonders to lift the dying Kenyan spirit.
Unless this happens, I can only predict just three more gold medals from Pamela Jelimo (800m), David Rudisha (800m) and Wilson Kipsang (marathon).
Forget about the women’s 5,000m, men’s 5,000m or even women’s 1,500m where the gold medals belong to Tirunesh Dibaba, Dejen Gebremeskel and Fantou Magiso, all of Ethiopia, respectively.
No personalised training
Unless the Prime Minister cracks the whip, and unless we see the backs of the NOCK officials who have seriously let the athletes and the country down, we should not expect sporting glory to come any time soon.
The issue of pre-Games training, lack of focus by AK’s top management and the absence of personalised training for our athletes are issues we will tackle another day.
Meanwhile, we await the report of the Parliamentary team investigating similar mismanagement of the Kenyan team at the last All Africa Games in Maputo where the same officials are implicated. Will we ever learn?
By Matt Blake
PUBLISHED: 14:44 GMT, 1 August 2012 | UPDATED: 16:41 GMT, 1 August 2012
But while training techniques appear extreme to Western eyes, they provide an insight into why China’s athletes at London 2012 seem so easily able to swim, dive, lift and shoot their way to victory.
Gymnastic stars are known for starting at an incredibly early age, and this group of children appear no different as they battled to complete the demanding routines on bars, rings, and mats.
Stretchy: Gymnastic stars are known for starting at an incredibly early age, and this group of children appear no different as they battled to complete the demanding routines on bars, rings, and mats
The youngsters at the same training school will be hoping to emulate the success of 16-year-old swimming sensation Ye Shewin, who glided into the record books on Saturday night.
Only last January harrowing photographs were posted on the internet showing Chinese children crying in pain as they were put to work.
In case they had forgotten why they were there, a large sign on the wall reminded them. ‘GOLD’ it said simply.
Charges are often taught by rote that their mission in life is to beat the Americans and all-comers to the top of the podium.