Here’s a low-grade piece of observation for you: lots of cliches are bunkum. And lots more are either one or both of trite and dull.
There’s at least one I can think of, however, that’s exactly none of these things. One I can think of that’s unerringly… boundlessly… unimpeachably accurate.
Absence makes the heart grow fonder.
In my experience (and granted, I’m nothing if not a soppy sentimentalist), those are a string of six words strung together expertly well. Whoever first did the stringing sure knew what they were doing.
Maybe they left London too, once upon a time. And wondered about it on, say, their way home from a long day at work. (Through too many crowds on too hot a day in the middle of another New York summer, clammy, sweating, wistful.) Maybe they wished they weren’t an ocean and more away from the slow rolling Thames. Missing it – and the clouds habitually above it, and the English sun sometimes peeking through – like crazy.
No. I really can’t begin to tell you how much I wish I were home for the Olympics. Home where the heart is, in London.
The Olympics will be outstanding and wonderful. Even in the ways that they won’t be. (How Britain will try to be bombastic but get it awkwardly wrong… How dads around the nation will complain about the costs but still go giddy once – at least – in front of some glorious sporting triumph or disaster… How it will rain and rain and rain till getting soaked to the bone becomes its own badge of honor….)
Every last thing (except corporate sponsorship) will be just-so and special. In an extraordinary, one-of-a-kind city getting a whole lot more right than it still conspires to get wrong. With Hazel Irvine on the tele enthusing (just the right amount) ‘bout some fellow in a boat, some other person running like the wind, someone crying, and someone else having all their dreams come true, breathless and exhausted.
Oh boy. Alan, Keith, Hannah, Ward, Danny, CJ, TC, Mike, Sam, Kaz, Rob, Rob, and Rob (and other London people too), please don’t for one second look the other way. You won’t be absent and the 2012 London Olympics are a heartbeat from starting.
Enjoy the shit out of it.