Blah, blah, blah the opening ceremonies for the London Olympics are tonight—we all know this. But beyond names like Michael Phelps and Missy Franklin, what do you really know about the Olympic Games this year?
If you’re attending (or hosting) an Olympics watch-party tonight, you’d better brush up on the best Olympics stories. You know, so you can dazzle your friends with your know-how by casually dropping some fact-bombs into your conversation, like, “Oh! There’s Malaysian rifle shooter Nur Suryani Mohamed Taibi. She’s eight months pregnant, you know.”
Just like that.
To help you bone up, here’s the CliffsNotes version of the 10 best stories coming out of the Olympics. Study hard, impress later.
Malaysian Shooter Is Eight Months Pregnant. At 34 weeks into her pregnancy, Nur Suryani Mohamed Taibi looks ready to burst. Although not the first preggo Olympian ever, she’s thought to be the furthest along during competition. She’ll fly home soon after her event next week because her doctors don’t want her in the air after 35 weeks. [Yahoo! Sports]
Russia’s Uniforms Are Absolutely Hideous. Fashion note: Red and white swirls on a track suit will never look good. Also? The font size for RUSSIA emblazoned across the chest could have stood to be a tad smaller. (Don’t cry, Russia—Spain’s uniforms are ugly, too. Oh shoot, they were designed by a Russian. Never mind.) [TIME]
The Liberty Bell Isn’t the Only One to Break at an Inopportune Time. Whoopsie. With all the world watching, British Olympics Secretary Jeremy Hunt almost hit an innocent bystander with shards of a shattered bell he was ringing during a live TV segment. As the WaPo reports, “Hunt’s ringing may have been a bit too joyous.” [Washington Post]
The Olympic Village Is Like Summer Camp When You Were 13. Perfect strangers living together. Lots of ogling. Boys showing off for girls. Girls giggling in circles. Cliques form. The gossip mill turns. The—hold on a sec. Come to think of it, the Olympic Village sounds more like a super boring season of The Real World than summer camp. [CBS News]
Olympic Athletes May Want to Lay Off Twitter. A super boneheaded, pretty racist tweet already got one Greek triple jumper booted from the Games. Take our advice, Phelps, et al: Step away from your iPhones. [TIME]
That Gambling Ad Is Hilarious. Londoners may be appreciating a cheeky billboard advertisement, which proclaims gambling website Paddy Power an official sponsor of the Games, but the International Olympic Committee is none too pleased, mainly because they don’t have a sense of humor but also because, as a rule, gambling companies aren’t allowed to sponsor the Games. See, the ad just said that the website was an “Official Sponsor of the Largest Athletic Event in London This Year!” But a parenthetical at the bottom clarifies that they meant London, France—not England—where Paddy Power is, in fact, sponsoring an egg-and-spoon race. So as you can see, it’s really just a test in reading comprehension. [SF Gate]
The Official Olympic Mascots Are a Swing and a Miss. Question: Why do the Olympic mascots look like creatures out of Monsters, Inc? [NJ.com]
Let’s Hope the Spice Girls Are Excited About All the Girl Power. It’s a banner year for women and the Olympics: This will be the first Games in history in which all of the more than 200 countries sent women to compete. And on Team U.S.A., we actually have more female than male athletes for the first time ever—269 ladies and 261 guys. Zig a zig ah! [Los Angeles Times]
Michelle Obama Would Like Team U.S.A. to Win. Us, too! [Newsday]
This Could Be the Last Olympics Where Athletes Aren’t Shooting Up with Superman Genes. No joke here—experts are concerned that “gene doping” could taint future Olympic Games. But if everybody does it across the board, does that level the playing field … somehow? [HealthDay]