Friday, February 23, 2007

Union Jacked Up

Roger Black's Olympic Challenge
28 February 2007

In a landmark new series for BBC Radio 4, Olympic Silver medallist Roger Black takes on one of Britain's most urgent challenges - to get the nation's kids fit for the 2012 London Olympics.

Roger calls in the Army to help him prepare his class for their first ever inter-school sports competition.

So Jamie Oliver's got our kids healthy, now good old Roger Black's on the scene to get them all fit enough to take part in the bloody 2012 Olympics.

Of course it really is a fucking "urgent challenge" to get Britain's kids fit for the Olympics. And where better to monitor their progress but on a Radio 4 programme. Let's face it, all kids listen to Radio 4.

Since retiring from his "job" as an athlete, Roger has worked as a BBC athletics know-it-all and is apparently an accomplished motivational speaker and conference host. In this morning's preview to the programme, Roger said he wants to teach kids to lose as well as how to win.

Do kids really need to learn how to lose? Losing's all a lot of them know. Does losing a fucking stupid race to a naturally talented athlete make you understand what it's like to lose, say, a member of your family? The deaths and rejections of loved-ones are all part of losing, Roger. Can you really say your stupid races are lessons in how to deal with these losses?

You have to be born a certain way to be an athlete. You can't learn how to have the right lungs or physique. Roger has done very well because he's a natural fast runner with the gift of the gab. Well, well done, Roger. Jolly good for you! But just what will you be able to motivate the kids to do? Run and lose? Great, yeah, a great lesson for life, there. They knew they were going to lose anyway!

I wish I was a kid again and you were trying to motivate me with your ridiculous Army back up. Is Prince Harry involved? Great example he is to the kids with his Nazi clothes and his SAS ring of steel around his puny royal body. You couldn't motivate me in a million years. I am one of the unmotivatable. So ner!

Sport is sport. That's it. If you're good at it, good luck to you. If you enjoy watching it, good luck to you. It is an escape from the thing we call life.



  1. Wouldn't it be hilarious if the British nation, en masse, refused to be interested at all in the 2012 Coca-Cola Olympics, refused to "get fit", refused to participate, and refused to buy tickets or watch it on TV? That would show our national spirit, sure enough: let's let everybody else win everything.

  2. Amazing how times change. It wasn't that long ago young Englishmen were motivated by a burning desire to civilize heathens. Now they all watch Russell Brand and eat curry.

  3. Rob - We should be sponsored by Pepsi to ignore it all.

    Dick - You can't beat a little Russell Brand and a lot of curry.

  4. Poor old Rog has never got over the fact that his running career coincided with the period when the outrageously talented Michael Johnson was tearing up the 400 metre record book. He never came close to beating him, and obviously found it very irritating when Johnson was adopted by the BBC as pundit.
    I think he became de-motivated.
    (Women seem to find him strangely attractive apparently)

  5. Bloody Do-Gooder!
    There is no way that British kids are as fat as North Americans...are they?
    Getting weighed in Stone (14 frickin pounds?) certainly doesn't help matters..
    what the hell is that all about anyway? We are supposedly a Metric country but being this close to America we still end up measuring everything in pounds and inches...its a joke...and an expensive annoying one.

  6. Murph - Michael Johnson also had extra comedic value with his hilarious upright running stance. What with him and footballer David Platt staring at the sky when he ran, the 90s were very entertaining. I think Roger is attractive to women because he is fresh faced and smiles a lot. A bit like the young Tony Blair.

    HE - I can't think in terms of pounds - I know I'm between 10 and 11 stone - that makes me between 140 and 154 pounds. British kids are all as slim as whippets and ready for the track thanks to Jamie Oliver.

  7. Running. People who run. People making other people run. Oh the horror.
    It's undignified; excusable only in the instance of pursuit of fascists, or avoiding pursuit by the latter.

  8. geoff, i liked roger black because he was fresh faced and smiled a lot and seemed 'nice'. i am very dull like that.

    michael johnson was sooo much better at punditing though.

    poor old rog.

    (my WF is fffgiles !)

  9. (erm...that's 'WV' of course - got a bit over excited about it)

  10. Arabella - It's natural to stop wanting to run at a certain age (about 9). They should concentrate less on the running and more on the walking to school instead of being driven in gas guzzling monsters.

    Beth - Roger's going to go the same way as Blair, I'm afraid. This fitness campaign could be his Iraq.

    fffgiles? I didn't think he had that much influence.

  11. Umm, reg. my comment above: it is now the next day and I'm off the pain meds. Just so you know.

  12. Wasn't Roger Black the only bloke in the relay tem who wasn't?

  13. Arabella - I thought it was a sensible comment. Apart from the bit about chasing fascists as I'm a big coward.

    Kaz - Like Frank Beard was the only member of ZZ Top who didn't have one.

  14. I would be nice to see kids being motivated to turn off the telly and get fit, but all they're going to do is turn to another channel.

    I was made to do sports at school. I hated it. I'm not agile or fast and I'm crap at hand-to-eye co-ordination stuff like tennis, rounders etc. It was ritual humiliation.

  15. I enjoyed the hand to eye stuff but hated athletics.