Sunday, May 6, 2018

Light The Cauldron - A New Venture!

Notice anything a little different?

For a few weeks now, ever since I started making the Olympic Blurb a more consistent item outside of the actual event, I have been thinking about rebranding my blog and dedicate it soley to the Olympic movement.

While I have enjoyed discussing Star Wars and other items on this blog, I feel like those areas are well saturated with very talented writers, while a more casual, geeky take on the Olympic games doesn't have as much representation.

Because of that, I have changed the name of the blog from Blurb Musings to Light The Cauldron, because it sounds like the United States Olympic Committee has some issues if you use the word "Olympics" in your work.

If you've been following me on my regular Twitter feed, know that I now have a dedicated Light The Cauldron account that will be focused on Olympic news, retweets, and commentary. You can find it @CauldronLight (because @lightthecauldron was one character too long). Anyone from Facebook can find my page here. Facebook is still deciding whether or not it's okay for me to rename my entire page, so once that clears up I'll provide clearer information.

So what is Light The Cauldron's goals? Here are some things I've been able to accomplish in the past ten years that I've been blogging:

  • Made a presence on the Internet
  • Created daily blog posts during the Olympics (starting in 2010 back when I just did it on Facebook Notes)
  • Recap various vacations and special events, including several WELS Worship Conferences (AKA a part of my day job), a Disney trip, and my massive 3-week trip to Europe last year. 
  • Make "Star Wars Saturday," a weekly blog about Star Wars that started at the 100-day countdown for both Episodes VII and VIII, and 
  • Develop quality relationships with several other quality blogs and podcasts specializing in various fandoms. 
I have a short-term goal and a long-term goal going forward. In the short term, I want to continue a steady stream of Olympic content leading up to the Tokyo 2020 Games. Not only will this consist of book/movie reviews and commentary on recent Olympic sporting events, but also my preparation for my own trip to Tokyo to watch the Olympics for the first time in person. 

In the long term, I want this to be a 10-year blog. I have grown so much in the first 10 years and I am excited to see how much I can improve from this point. The blog's endgame is the Los Angeles 2028 Olympics, where I am looking to work as a volunteer. 

I don't have too much planned beyond those two goals, but they're good enough goals for now. I'm sure that as I continue, smaller goals and opportunities will appear, and I'm excited to see what they are!

Becoming an Olympic blog doesn't mean that I'll give up on all of my other types of posts. The three pillars of Olympism are sport, culture, and the environment, and I believe that travel blogs definitely fit under those pillars - I wouldn't be fulfilling my Olympic duty if I only covered the sport angle!

Thank you for reading one, three, or all of my blog posts so far! I hope that you'll continue reading (and sometimes watching) as my love and appreciation for the Olympic Games continues to grow!


Tokyo 2020 Prep

I took a look at a few Olympic-specific articles like this this one (and this one, too) that says tickets for events usually go on sale 18 months before the Games. Since they begin in the end of July, that would have the approximate date of release around March of 2019. I know there are a few travel companies that have dates specifically for the Olympics like Bucket List Events, CoSport, and Jet Set Sports. I want to do a bit more research on the three and see if any of them stick out. It might be easier when I actually get there to go through a travel company, but it will be more expensive! If I'm well prepared, I could get away with paying a la carte. (But do I want to stay at a capsule hotel for two weeks straight? I have to sleep on that a bit.)

Mini Blurbs

  • This week's BlurbWatch:
    • archery
    • triathlon
    • track and field
    • I joined the IAAF Diamond Fantasy League! Who knew that was ever a thing? It's a little easier than a baseball or football league since Diamond League is every couple of weeks. Here's my team for this weekend's meet:
      • Katerina Stefanidi (captain)
      • Kipyegon Bett
      • Dafne Schippers
      • Mohamat Allamine Hamdi
      • Caster Semenya
      • Christian Taylor
      • Agnes Jebet Tirop
      • Andreas Hoffman
      • Kendra Harrison
    • Harrison and Semenya secured me two first place finishes, but Tirop ended up just barely getting beat in the 3000 meters by her teammate while Taylor only took second in the triple  jump. And Stefanidi totally dropped off the map - she didn't look like herself at all!
    • In the end, I got 67 points, but the leader had 240! I have some work to do. 

    • I did watch Dancing with the Stars on Monday, and I think the right people went home. While figure skaters definitely have an advantage (Mirai Nagasu and Adam Rippon both had top performances), basketball players are not trained to handle dance moves like these. Both Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Arike Ogunbowale had back-up dancers along with their professional partners. I was surprised by both luger Chris Mazdzer and figure skater Tonya Harding - they looked great up there! I am looking forward to tomorrow's dances - plus the happy news that this is just a four-week cycle and it's not getting dragged out!
    • Farewell to Dawn Harper-Nelson, 100-meter hurdler and surprise gold medalist from the 2008 Beijing Olympics. I remember very vividly the night she won. The NBC crew had been heaping up all the praise on teammate Lolo Jones, and I found it annoying even at that time how much they were basically guaranteeing her a medal! But then Jones stumbled on the last hurdle and Harper-Nelson pushed through to win. I think the commentators were scrambling to find out more information about her because they didn't expect her to win at all! (Neither did she!) She continued to compete at an elite level for ten years, and that is impressive. I salute you!
    • I caught a World Cup archery event from a few weekends ago in Shanghai, where the athletes shot over a body of water to reach their target. It was a very unique setup. Plus, the referees all spoke English to all the athletes, even though the event was in China. 
    • The Koreans are clear favorites right now in the sport of archery, and they swept all the individual and team events in that Shanghai competition! One athlete in particular, Chang Hye Jin, hit three perfect bullseyes in one round - there wasn't any way she could have shot better! 
    • The Diamond League coverage was really nice, because it wasn't the normal NBC crew. Instead, it was an international crew, and they made sure to spend more time on field events than normal. It was great!
    • Sandi Morris has picked up right where she left off in the World Indoor Championships, winning the Diamond League pole vault event. I hope she can carry this over for another two years! (It seems like pole vaulters have good longevity, so I'm optimistic.)
    • I remember Croatia's Sandra Perkovic from Olympics past, and she competed and dominated the discus event. I need to remember some of these names for my next selections!
    • The Triathlon series was taking place in Bermuda, and it looked beautiful! They have to do a lot of loops in each discipline, though, so that must be difficult. The men had to do two loops of swimming, ten laps of biking, and four laps of running. How boring! (Well, as boring as it can get for competing in Bermuda.)
    And there's one more new item I'd like to start adding at the end of every Olympic blog: 

    Is the cauldron lit????

    ...No.

    I'm Claire Nat and you're reading Light The Cauldron! Follow me on Twitter and Facebook @CauldronLight and read my past Olympic articles! You can start with my daily recap of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics HERE!

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