this past week in Oz

Carl Remick carlremick at
Fri Aug 18 09:30:16 PDT 2000

>The cost of trying to keep pace with the "global economy"? This was once a
>cool country.

>From where I sit, Australia still does seem pretty cool compared to another
other continent-spanning country that comes to mind. There was a nice tribute to Oz in the Wall Street Journal yesterday that remarked on the conspicuous lack of Olympic fever in Sydney, under the headline, "Aussies Just Don't Seem Awed by the Games."

The article noted, for instance: "The 2000 Summer Olympics here may go down as the largest in history, and also the drollest and most self-deprecating. If Atlanta, the last summer host, is famed for its boosterism, Sydney is its temperamental antipodes, an irreverant, cynical city with a sense of humor as dry and withering as the outback. Most Australians scorn what they see as America's fondness for hype, orchestrated sentiment, and 'I'm No. 1' braggadocio. So the more Olympic officials here try to whip up passion for the Games, the more Sydney residents bridle. 'Australians don't like being told things,' says Mr. [Dennis] Watkins [of the Sydney Opera House Trust]. 'As soon as we're told we should feel this way, or behave this way, we're sure to do the opposite.'

Certainly a marked contrast to the many millions of rugged individualists here in the States who are so desperate to do as they're told.

Carl ________________________________________________________________________ Get Your Private, Free E-mail from MSN Hotmail at

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