I'm afraid you'll have to look elsewhere in the next week for your daily fixes of thrills, spills, gossip and sarcasm: Plashing Vole's going away. More specifically, I'm going to the School Games, the shrunken bastard Tory child of the murdered UK School Games (RIP). I should be at my friend Adam's stag weekend in Nice, but duty calls…
I'll be wearing top-to-toe polyester, though thankfully not in episcopal purple this year, as I'm now chef de mission. That's not me being sarcastic, it really is my title. Despite it translating as Head of Event, I'm really not. I'll actually be the dogsbody. The upside is that now I'm not Child Protection Officer, I don't have to care about children patrol the hotel and venue until 4 a.m. and get up at 6 a.m. No, this year I'll be able to spend the witching hours doing my marking, which really won't wait.
I'll not be totally absent: I'll try to post some of the photographs I take, and no doubt there'll be a certain amount of Tweeting going on (@plashingvole), but I'll basically be hermetically sealed in the Olympic venues. No Leveson, just as it's getting exciting again! I get back on Wednesday night, but I'm on strike on Thursday (I'll moan at length about the tactical stupidity of this at a later date) so you'll just have to get along without me.
If you're wondering what the School Games is like, here are my pictures from last year. The fencing event is always utterly brilliant - keen, competitive kids doing stuff I'd need major surgery to manage. The other highlight, of course, is the opening speech by a politician. It's been Jeremy Hunt in recent years, and a repeat of that would be a wonderful opportunity for satire. The other strong contender would be Boris Johnson, as the Games are a test event for the Olympics. That wouldn't be so much fun: he'll be the smuggest man in the world a couple of days after getting re-elected. Still, the kids are always cheerfully mocking of the men in suits, so they'll find some way to wind him up. Note to self: keep him away from the teenage girls.
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