Team USA held its Media Summit ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympics and Paralympics. This is the first time the Media Summit has been in person since 2017, and it’s our first time attending the big event. It was a three-day whirlwind of events, press conferences, and interviews. We talked with 61 athletes from 37 different sports, so in the coming weeks, we’ll have lots of fun stories to share with you from this weekend.

We’ve hit the 100 days to go until Paris mark, and with it came the lighting of the Olympic flame. We discuss the torch lighting ceremony, which includes new choreography and costumes.

Speaking of costumes, several countries released their Opening Ceremonies, podium, or general Paris 2024 athlete kit–and we have to say, there are some hits and misses. Who’s going to rock it at the Games? We have predictions.

Plus, we’ve got Opening Ceremonies details, a look at Peacock’s Paris 2024 coverage (they learned some things from Tokyo 2020, that’s for sure!), and more hospitality house news.

We also pop in to TKFLASTAN, where we’ve got news from video journalist Sean Colahan and beach volleyball player Kelly Cheng.

Thanks so much for listening, and until next time, keep the flame alive!

Photo taken by Nicholas Wolaver.


Note: This is an uncorrected machine-generated transcript and may contain errors. Please check its accuracy against the audio. Do not quote from the transcript; use the audio as the record of note.

333-The Push to Paris 2024

Jill: Hello and welcome to another episode of Keep the Flame Alive, the podcast for fans of the Olympics and Paralympics. If you love the games, we are the show for you. Each week we share stories from athletes and people behind the scenes to help you have more fun watching the games. I’m your host, Jill Jaracz, joined as always by my lovely co host, Alison Brown.

Alison, hello! I see you! In person.

[00:00:48] Team USA Media Summit Recap

Alison: I know, and we have survived our test event.

Jill: That’s, oh my gosh, it was a really good test

Alison: event. It was fantastic. We have great, we have a many learnings. Yes.

Jill: Much audio to sift through. So we were at the Team USA Media Summit this week. there’s stuff on our socials.

If you’re in the group, you’ve been getting updates and special behind the scenes videos of stuff. We’ll have more of that special content going to Facebook group members. So go to Keep the Flame Alive podcast group to find that out.

Alison: Bathroom news. I’m going to share my bathroom news. Okay. Once again, we’re going to have Olympic bathroom stories clearly

Jill: Looking forward to that We also want to give a shout out to our patrons and supporters who keep our flame alive Which would go out if we don’t have your support.

So thank you to those who donate money buy our products. We’ve got viewing guide. Viewing guide keeps continually getting updated with all the latest news about Paris. We’ve got merch so that we can find you in Paris because you’ll be a proud Shuklastani wearing your Shuklastani gear. So if you would like to be an essential part of this show, please go to flamealivepod. com slash support. All right, Media Summit.

Alison: Media Summit. So three days of Team USA and What I want everybody to know is when you see those quick little hits of the Olympians and the Paralympians, know that in a day, they did it all in a day, so an athlete would start the morning, say, on the Today Show.

So if you’ve been watching the Today Show this week, you’ve seen the gymnasts, you’ve seen, uh, some of the fencers, then they come back and they do a press conference. And then after the press conference, they go to roundtables, which are kind of like mini press conferences.

Jill: Right. They, they have a big room.

We’ve been in a hotel. We’ve been in the Marriott Marquis in Times Square all week. so for those roundtables, the athletes all sit at a table and, Press go to them and talk to each of them sometimes individually. Sometimes it’s a bunch of press all at once It’s all depending but that’s I would say Written press is generally where that goes.

Alison: Okay, then they come into where we were which was video row But before they get to us they have to go through us up to 15 outlets, they’re capturing video, asking some rather unfortunate questions. We will get to that. Then they come and sit with us. If there’s time, if there’s time, and sometimes we got two minutes, sometimes we got five minutes.

Once we got 30 minutes because she got comfortable with us and then after they leave us They go do those little video captures for NBC and for Team USA and they get photos taken

And then some people were making additional television appearances or appearances around the city, so

Jill: And, and they, there was another room that was just social media outlets.

So that’s right. There was a Snapchat booth. There was a threads thrown that they can sit in and they had to do stuff with all of that. And that’s all getting those interstitial content. So like you’ll see it on NBC and you’ll see it on Peacock for sure. just those little quick hits of athletes being goofy or saying answers to the same question.

Um, Yeah. They’ll all get chopped up and put into random bits of coverage.

Alison: And we’ve all seen these things. And it’s so important for selling the Olympics, selling the Paralympics, selling the athletes and their various sports. But man, is it tough on these kids?

Jill: It’s tough. It’s a long, long day. They get tired.

They get tired of asking the same question, especially to people who aren’t, you know,

Alison: And I forgot that there is the green room that they go to for hair and makeup as well of varying degrees of glam. So we had, just an amazing, event, the USOPC. I absolutely want to give them a shout out.

Their staff was amazing and working with the press and trying to get everybody what they needed, supporting the athletes through things that they are not used to.

Jill: Right. And also making sure that athletes stories get told. And this quad seems like there’s a bigger push to have more athletes and every athlete get the opportunity to tell their story because there’s so many, there’s like a team of 800 going.

Alison: So Team USA has debuted what they’re calling the P. A. platform one for all. I know you have a question about the platform, but what they’ve done is they’ve created a template and a form all the athletes can use. And. They’re getting many, many athletes, lots of professional video and photographs so that they’re using all the different platforms to get the stories out.

So we have complained in the past that you’ve got three athletes in the summer. who get all the press and get all the stories. And maybe your local newspaper or local TV station will pick up

Jill: a few of the local people.

Alison: Exactly. But now they’re really trying to amplify and have the athletes control what’s getting out there because that’s what seems to be the connection.

Obviously people are fans of the sport. People are fans of the stories, but how does the athlete him or herself want to be seen? And I think they’re trying to give more control to the athletes, which, you know, we’re always going to be a fan of, but giving them a format in which to work. So you’re not recreating the wheel every single time.

Jill: Exactly. And platform really confused me for a long time because, because as they debuted this, It really looked like, well, this is a 60 second ad. Which, in a sense, the first element of it is a 60 second ad, and

About photography. and some of the photography done by Alex Shibutani.

Alison: Yeah, so Alex was on one of the panels with his fabulous platinum hair, and he has transitioned to doing photography and short videos and really working with the athletes, I think, to get Hi.

those images that they want to be perceived. He spoke about it at one of the press conferences incredibly eloquently and saying he understands, which we know he does, especially coming from something like figure skating, where it’s so image driven and the photographs were beautiful. What an eye he has, which also makes sense given that he’s been He’s from figure skating and that artistic composite visual image is so important.

Jill: Right. So start looking for all of that content coming your way.

Alison: let’s start with the photographs. Cause I want to start there since we’re talking about photography. Okay. So one of the things that we did yesterday was, the professional photographer was on a different floor from us. So we hadn’t seen them all three days.

We stopped down on the way out to catch up with a couple of Shooklastanis. And I spoke to one of the moms because one of the great things about this week was a lot of the young athletes had their moms with them.

Jill: Right. Because every athlete had some sort of handler, whether it was their agent or a staff member

Alison: or parent.

Right. So they had volunteers and they had federation people and then they could also, I think, have a guest. So there was a lot of moms and of course the moms are my age and their kids are my daughter’s age. So I always jumped to the moms. How are you doing? What’s going on? And one mom was laughing yet also upset because the photographer was pushing her daughter who was in her early twenties.

So she wasn’t very young to be sexy athlete. in the photographs. And we saw a lot of the women come through very glammed up in a way that some were excited about and one poor girl wanted to rip off those false false eyelashes. So I’m slightly concerned. Are we still in 2024 pushing the sexy female athlete, but the men get to be strong and I am very curious.

Jill: I’m curious to see what These photos all look like and actually what they end up using because that’s part of it is what they take part of it is what they use. So we will see and hopefully that keeps shifting. I don’t know. It was kind of funny to see the athletes who are really uncomfortable in makeup.

And then there was Hannah Roberts who was like, Oh, no, forget this.

Alison: They had not glammed Hannah Roberts off. She’s a BMX racer. She is. Fantastic. But she clearly just looked at them and said, Are you kidding? She’s very lovely, beautiful smile, nothing to complain about, but she just did not fit the mold and all the other girls had the same makeup artist.

They all got the Instagram makeup done. And that as, as a mom and a women’s sports fan, that was very frustrating. And I’m wondering, and I want everybody else to comment on this. So please, you know, talk to us on socials. I’m hoping. I’m just being overprotective and that’s not how the rest of the world is seeing it because as I said, these girls are my daughter’s age, right?

So am I saying to them, are you overly sexualizing these young women and not doing it to the men? Or is that how other people, especially people younger than we are, how are they seeing it as well?

Jill: Right. And that’s also very good to point out is the generational differences because we’re older than many of these athletes.

We met an athlete who was our age! We were so excited! And, uh, What they perceive and how the end how they want to present themselves is, you know, that’s a personal choice So for some people what do they want to do? Was this a fun opportunity to get glammed up in a way that they don’t usually do and it’s fun and different and unusual And it adds to all the excitement of becoming an Olympian or being part of Team USA We we don’t know and it’s probably not for us to super judge it But you know We Do have our concerns because we’re the old ladies, or as we were told, we were the fun aunties.

I completely embrace that identity. I do.

We also went to lighting of the Empire State Building. That was interesting because it’s fun to see the world of capturing live events. And in terms of you have to get there very early and set up and then you’re standing around and everybody’s jockeying for position and the people who are latecomers are like, Oh, I’ve got no place to set up my camera.

But you know how all the camera people set themselves up. Where do you have room to set yourself up? Do you? Did you even see the Empire State Building lighting ceremony?

Alison: So we got to the Empire State Building. They had a some of the athletes up front to flip the switch. You kind of wiggled your way up front to get video.

I decided I wasn’t even going to try because I wanted to capture some of the audio and I saw nothing because I’m five feet tall, which was fine. And I was way in the back. And one of the women said to me, one of the USOPC staff said to me, Oh, you can’t see anything. And I said to her, I’m audio only and I’m short, I’ll see video later.

And what’s so interesting is we as consumers of news media and this video only see the front half.

Jill: Mm hmm.

Alison: And what’s happening behind the scenes so affects those people who are on camera. I mean, Matt Stutzman, one of our Sookful Stannies, was there to flip the switch. And people are pushing and shoving and, and there’s just chaos in front of you.

And one of the worst sound systems to play background music that sounded like a jukebox that hasn’t worked since 1929. And yet it looks so glamorous on camera. So once again, we as consumers need to be reminded that what you see is so small of what’s really going on.

Jill: Right. And how time intensive it is to plan and coordinate and get the people in and set it, set it up.

And then afterwards, how long some of these outlets had to edit what, what video they had, choose what segments they wanted to show and make it work for yesterday’s news. It’s really,

Alison: we’ve only done online press events and being there in person is, it’s very, evident to me how we need to be so careful of getting impressions of these athletes of these sports and never seeing it in person.

Always keep that grain of salt, which I’m totally guilty of. Yeah, me too. There’s lots of things that I say on the show. And trust me, there’s lots of things I don’t say on the show in terms of what I think of certain people. And That’s not fair. I’m still going to have them.

Jill: Yes. But, but it also helps to, as we keep doing this, we’re getting more of an education and we see more and we understand more.

And we’re trying to convey that to you so that you can understand more and develop a sense of what is real versus what is packaged and what is shown to you.

Alison: And oh my goodness. We were sitting behind video row and when we were starting to use those tapes, you’re going to hear a lot of noise in the background, but we still got some amazing interviews and I’m really excited to share them.

But boy, what’s your favorite Swifty song? What’s your hype list? What’s your favorite potato? Like your favorite, there was one outlet who had a card of all the different types of potato preparations. and was saying, you know, rank your favorite and why, and that’s going to be their video content of these athletes.

Some athletes thought it was, thought it was fun and kind of cute. And some athletes just, I know wanted to go home, go back to the gym and just not deal with this. So when an athlete comes off as cold, prickly, unpleasant. That’s not fair either.

Jill: Right, because you don’t know if that’s the 10th time in the last 15 minutes that they’ve answered that very same question.

And it gets old, and I know they try, but they’re also not media people. They’re athletes.

Alison: And some have agents, and some have federations that really prep them well. And some have federations that don’t have a press person full time.

Jill: Right. We learned some amazing statistic about how many NGBs, we got to look it up, like 25. You’ve got it. So

Alison: in the United States, 25 national governing, governing bodies make less than 25 million a year.

Jill: And when you think about that 25 million covers staff, it covers. Um, the elite team and it also has to cover all of the other grassroots, grassroots programs and services for the entire country of what that NGB can provide and get more people involved in their sport and get people to do their sport.

Alison: So when Team USA talks about We’re the only national governing body who doesn’t receive government funding. Now there’s this, these federations also that not only receive don’t, that not only don’t receive government funding, they’re not getting a ton from team USA either. And it’s not like badminton is getting TV rights money.

Jill: So

Alison: when you see those smaller sports, I mean, one of the reasons we do what we do is for the smaller sports to get exposure. But the money to. take care of these kids is not always there.

Jill: but We did try to give people exposure.

We talked with 61 athletes in three days, covered 37 different sports, and Alison made friends with two service dogs.

Alison: They were not working at the time. I want to, I want to make that very clear that it was told to me. I didn’t even ask. I just, said, Oh, what a, you know, what a lovely service dog you have.

Oh, you can pet him. So you will hear a couple of interviews where I’m not on very much because I am sitting on the floor with the service dog. And I really do want to thank both Olivia and Beatrice who you’ll hear for sharing their pups with me. That was

Jill: That was a treat. They were fantastic.

[00:18:10] Paris 2024 News

Jill: All right.

We are officially 100 days out from Paris 2024. Well, now we’re 99 days out when we’re

Alison: recording.

Jill: Yes. It’s getting more real by the minute. We have a torch lighting ceremony. That was the big thing.

Alison: Yes. And we had a backup flame. Yeah,

Jill: it was a cloudy

Alison: day. It didn’t look it on camera. No, it didn’t. It looked quite clear and sunny and actually the OBS announcer made a comment about he didn’t think they were gonna need the backup flame.

Jill: Right, but they didn’t even try. They, it’s obvious they know and have practiced enough to go. It’s too cloudy. It’s too overcast. We are not getting a flame. And, and I bet they don’t even try because they don’t want it to look bad either. If you try and try, let’s just get on with it and have a real flame.

Alison: So the flame came out of, came out with the priestesses on a little box, lit the first torch, lit the real torch, because they sort of have a,

Jill: they have a little bowl, a flame bowl. the costumes we talked about or have shown online. they are the new costumes for this year’s torch lighting.

The priestesses look, and even the, the men who are part of the ceremony, they’re, they’re like sheath dresses that are pleaded, but they look like different Greek columns, and they were beautiful.

Alison: So in the past, most of the priestesses. are dressed in that very traditional white pleated flowing garment in some form or another.

So this was a very, very different look in motion and on film was so deep and had a lot of, of movement to it. And there was all new choreography, also seemed to highlight the movement of the dresses. Yes. So it wasn’t just a costume. It was part of, of the choreography. Which some of which was questionable, but appropriate.

Jill: Yes. It’s all very stately. And, there

Alison: are times where it looks like ridiculous modern dance.

Jill: A little bit, but it’s, it’s not bad. , but it’s not bouncy and happy. Everybody’s moving kind of elegantly through space, uh, in a very kind of, church like way because these are priestesses

Alison: in the Temple of Hera.

Jill: Right. And I do wonder what priestesses in the Temple of Hera actually did back in the day.

Alison: Not this,

but there was gravitas, there was beauty to it. You know, all the heavy hitters were there. President of Greece, Thomas Bach. A

Jill: lot of dignitaries. And if you’re keeping score, like me, Yes, the president’s chair was back because, so I mean, this was great because we haven’t had crowds being able to see the flame lighting in two past ceremonies.

So crowds sat on the hills. And then in the middle of the field, or it was, it was dirt, so I wondered if it was like, Well, part of it is supposed to be the ancient track. Yes. Oh, yes, that’s right. That’s right. The ancient track. Uh, the dignitaries and VIPs all sat in very nice director’s chairs and then, Had swag bags hanging off the back.

Alison: I

Jill: don’t

Alison: know what was in

Jill: them. Um, and, uh, the president of Greece sat on her own in The big chair and

Alison: it was a larger of the same director’s chair It looked like with kind of bows and things on it because it one of them had some swag like Like the bows you put on the back of at a wedding like the

Jill: oh, I know, you know, I didn’t see that It just looks like a very nice armchair.

Not with a huge but like leather back A wooden arms. It’s just big and different. And she’s sitting all by herself in the middle and the front middle with us, like probably a security guard behind her.

Alison: I’m going to try and say, uh, the president of Greece’s name rather than just refer to her as the president of Greece. So it’s Katerina Tsakala Ropoulou, is not a very large woman. No. She’s a, she is a very petite woman and the poor thing had to sit in this, in this, in Enormous chair. And it was a lot of fun.

Then you had the typical speeches, Tony Astengay, Thomas Bach.

Jill: Lighting thing we noticed. And so the priestess is, uh, handed off the flame, the torch is on its way. It visits Pierre de Coubertin’s grave, which is right there as well. Big thing we noticed about this torch.

Alison: So we did get to see the torch in person.

And hold it. And hold it. It is extremely light. It is, I thought much more silvery in person than it photographs. It’s very shiny. Extremely shiny. They lit this thing and the entire top turned black with soot within minutes. Yeah. And as we mentioned in a environmental slash cost cutting measure, they’re not producing a ton of torches this time.

So each torch will be used for multiple legs of the relay. So they’re not rather than handing the flame physically handing the torch over. And even for the first handover where they did use two torches. That first one, the entire, that narrow tip was covered in soot and completely lost color and shine.

Jill: So I’m very curious to see how this works. Is they, you know, do they polish up the torches in between at the end of every night? How many are you, how many are they using a day? What’s going, what’s going to happen? And what are these going to look like when, when the torch relay is done?

Alison: Right. And when they do the opening ceremony, I assume, maybe wrongly, that they are going to physically pass a single torch around, given that that was such a big element of the press releases for the relay.

So how is that torch going to look when it gets to the cauldron? Are we going to have the singed, snowflame like we had in Beijing because they use that torch as the cauldron.

Jill: I don’t know. We will. It is something that we will keep an eye on as we touch base with the torch relay over the next 99 days.

Alison: So when you see pictures from the torch relay, please take a good look, especially color pictures. Please take a really good look at that top half. It’s beautiful in person, super, super light,

but, Is it going to look like a used match?

Jill: All right. We, uh, found out some information about the opening ceremonies that might interest you, especially if you’re planning to go to Paris. first off, if you go on Opening Ceremonies Day, if you’re in the If you get a ticket to the Opening Ceremony, don’t expect any Wi Fi.

They’re gonna have, boosted, uh, mobile networks, but there will be no Wi Fi available. There will be massive security, so the entire river throughout the city of Paris will be cut off for the day. No access anywhere, and that’s

that’s not just the six kilometer parade route and the Trocadero uh Stadium area where they’re doing all the protocol elements. That is the entire river. So it’ll be blocked off There’s going to be a lot of access points for you I think what I would imagine because what’s happening with press is that there are Designated sections throughout and you’re if if we can get a ticket to this area.

There’s not a ton of press tickets to be honest. There’s some for the Trocadero area, and some for along the Seine, but you’re relegated to a specific section of the Seine. So I would not be surprised if that also pat, uh, went down to spectators, where they would not be able to go beyond a certain area if they wanted to walk around.

Alison: It’s going to be your whole day because you have to get there very early. They’re going to be shutting down some of public transportation and the stations closest by.

Jill: Mm hmm.

Alison: You’re going to be there a very long time.

Jill: Mm hmm.

Alison: The ceremony is slated to go almost four hours. I think they said. Yeah. Three and a half to four.

Jill: It sounds like the regular ceremony timeframe, but it’s going to be a long day with getting through security and getting to your place. I believe there’s going to be. concessions around, um, they probably will let you bring in an empty water bottle because there’s also going to be water refill stations as well.

So be on the lookout. If you do get a ticket, there will be plenty of information conveyed to you. Get an idea. This is what probably will happen. Also, we found out, interesting, is that usually the opening ceremony is the show, the parade of nations, and then all the protocol elements ending with the cauldron being

Alison: lit.

Not this time.

Jill: No, all of those get woven together and that’s in part due to the fact that this parade of nations route is so long and will take a very long time. So they wanted to have elements of show in there. And you will see this on, uh, if you’re watching from home, just you’ll see the show go on as the parade of nations happens.

The protocol will still go in there as well. That’ll fit in, in different ways. But, uh, it’ll, it’s going to be a much different flow than any other ceremony you’ve seen.

Alison: I thought the visual that they used in the graphic in, in the press conference was very interesting because they had a red ribbon, a white ribbon, and a blue ribbon.

And, And then they created like a triple helix weaving together. And I think that’ll be very interesting for television viewers because the parade of nations is very slow TV. We love it because we love the national costumes. But I think what’s going to end up happening for American television especially is there’s going to be a lot of countries you don’t see or you see very quickly.

Like they’ll have one camera videoing, videoing that. And when they have a lull, they’ll show you like one country, one country, one country, but they’ve actually launched those boats over 20 minutes, but you’ll see it for a minute, which may make the viewing of it, especially the edited version for American prime time, much shorter.

Jill: Maybe. Don’t know. Or, or maybe they’re going to check back in with different boats as they go with different boats from bigger countries. as they go in. It’ll be interesting to see how NBC is going to handle this for, for American audiences. they did say some countries will be sharing boats because delegations will be, you know, if you’ve, your country with a small delegation, you’re going to share a boat with another country that’s probably got a small delegation, but they’re going to make it so it’s easy to tell the countries apart.


Alison: I, well, there’s going to be 90 boats for about 205 delegations. And they mentioned that the boats have three tiers. So, The way they explained it was every nation is going to have easy viewing. So I think you might have, there are four sides of the boat. One country is in the front, one on each side, one at the back for certain things.

And then different countries on different tiers. Also, you know, when you have those countries, they said they would keep the traditional alphabetic view.

Jill: Yeah, whatever the order, order will be for France. ’cause it’s always in the host country’s alphabet and not every, so like Germany we would put under G in, in America.

That’s Alamo. It’s, yeah, it’s Alamo, so it’ll be in the A’s. So it’s going by the, the French name of the country.

Alison: So it’ll be interesting to see who ends up on the same boat together.

Jill: Correct.

So that’s exciting. And speaking of athletes and boats, there was more kit revealed. So

Alison: much. Well, so many countries use that 100 day media blitz to release kit. Uh, we saw the team USA kit in person, but not the opening ceremony outfit.

Jill: Correct. That will come in June. , Ralph Lauren is the outfitter again.

once again, created a whole line. There’s a whole line of Team USA clothing that will be available for public purchase. And we saw several of those pieces. We have videos on those on various socials. Um, but we saw the athletes, you know, the athletes got their Team USA kit for, for media day. So it was fun to see what they’re coming around it as well.

Alison: And, uh, we talked about this a little bit. with people on socials, and it, they are definitely taking the 100th anniversary of Paris 2024, that century mark, as an inspiration. So I’m hopeful we’re going to see some fun retro outfits for the opening ceremonies for Team USA. Very hopeful because

Jill: then we saw France.

Alison: Dear Lord in heaven, the poor French women. on their Olympic team. Right. So Paralympic team, cause it’s the same outfit.

Jill: So, uh, France’s opening ceremonies uniform is made by Berluti. Uh, they are wearing a midnight blue tuxedo jacket, a cotton silk blend white shirt. Um, the tuxedo jacket has the, uh, ombre effect on the lapels of the French flag.

There’s a pocket square option that’s also the ombre of the French flag. The jacket for the women has no sleeves and they also have the option of a skirt.

Alison: So the pants on the men are very narrowly cut. The women may wear the pants. The women have a blue silk wrap skirt. I have never seen a more unflattering women’s suit put together.

Jill: No, it really, the, shoulder arm, the, the, the cutout of the arm hole, it just is at a bad hits at a bad place on the shoulder. So you see none of these, uh, athletes definition very well. And it doesn’t cut, it doesn’t cut the body very well either.

Alison: For the French who are the capital of fashion, the men look quite nice, but the women, man, they, They blew it.

Jill: I think it’s a tough one for the women. Uh, we also saw australia They are uh outfitted by sports craft for their opening ceremony uniform Men get a white sport tee a single breasted green jacket and khaki shorts Women have a white sport tee or tank green double breasted Uh jacket and choice of khaki shorts or a pleated ombre skirt, which has to do with uh sports craft did a lot with pleated skirts.

Alison: And the ombre we saw in their, uh, competition uniforms, that green and yellow with the, um, aboriginal prints involved, yet again, a women’s jacket made by people who have never seen a woman.

Jill: Right. Cause this is, oh my gosh, this is very 80s, 90s. It looks like they should be, like you said, put on tennis shoes and be commuters in, in New York, going to the secretary.

Alison: The uniform is with tennis shoes. So you have this silky ombre skirt with tennis shoes, this incredibly large shoulder padded boxy double breasted jacket. And I said, Oh, you’re, you’re going to go to the office. You’ve got your heels in your bag. Right.

Jill: And it’s, and then the men with the single breasted jacket option, they all looked like they were going to bust out of it and look like they had no shoulders.

Alison: Right. It was just, We’re seeing a lot of poorly cut jackets and a lot of ombre already.

Jill: Yes, it looks like the theme of the year will be ombre.

I will say that saving grace for the Australian opening ceremonies outfit is the fact that they do have, again, the names of all of the winners from Australia in the lining, as well as the Australian Olympic committee athlete oath, oath. embroidered in. So that is such a nice touch. It makes the jacket so, so special.

Alison: It’s the only reason you would keep that jacket, because you’re not going to wear it again for fashion purposes. But I do love that they’ve started that tradition of embroidering all the, I think it’s 301, Uh, gold medalists from Australia throughout history in the and it keeps that tradition.

It keeps that you are part of a very long line of sporting history in Australia. Which, right. What an inspiration that is. Absolutely. Because gosh, they got to walk around in those jackets. A Canada also revealed kit. And what was great for us was, uh, Shukla Stani Alison Levine modeled the wheelchair specific uniform.

So Lulu Lemon again is the, the outfitter. for Team Canada. And they made specific items that work with wheelchair users. So I guess it’s narrower sleeves, certain thing, the length of the jacket is cut properly, the length of the pants. So fantastic.

Alison: And Lululemon has again, not gone with the traditional red and like in Beijing, they’ve gone with that deeper richer, uh, red for Canada.

Jill: Yes. And they had, again, it’s a kit with many pieces. There’s some grayer pieces. There are some very patterned pieces for lack of a better word that are going to be very time in place. So that will be near and dear to your heart.

Alison: And it does, in fact, once again, have a bit of an ombre effect in that they use different shades of red to create designs.

But when you look at it further away, it looks ombre. One unfortunate element. The jackets have suspenders inside of them. So if you take the jacket off, you know, usually you’re a tourist, you’re walking around, Oh, it’s cold in the morning, hot in the afternoon. I’m just going to tie it around my waist, but team Canada doesn’t need to do that.

They can hang it off their shoulders with suspenders.

Jill: I’m looking forward to seeing that one in person. I’m looking, actually looking forward to seeing a lot of kit in person so we can go, Oh, this is what it looks like in person, much different. And then we can have a whole show of, Oh, we were wrong or we were right.

Alison: And that is something that I don’t think enough of these kit producers are paying attention to. The great majority of people are going to see this kit on photograph, not even on film. They’re just going to see still photography of it. Please pay more attention to that.

Jill: Japan released its regular kit, not, not the special opening ceremonies kit.

They’ve got a regular kit out it’s a basic jogging suit. So that’s nothing special. It looks nice. Uh, but the color is different from what you would expect. They, instead of doing the. Japanese traditional red rising sun color. It is supposed to invoke a Parisian sunrise.

So it’s kind of peachy, kind of pinkish reddish. And it’s, it’s not ombre, but it’s, it’s, it was hard to tell in pictures. And I bet in person, it’s going to be stunning.

Alison: It looked like that taffeta that has the interwoven colored thread. So as it moves, it will pick up different shades. And what a brilliant design choice because obviously the symbol of Japan is that red rising sun on their flag.

And then using a color that invokes a Parisian rising sun,

Jill: right?

Alison: Really, really fun color a very traditional cut of items.

Jill: Exactly. Uh, Team GB has unveiled their competition uniforms. So

Alison: Adidas took a note from Nike. So apparently Nike had a huge controversy about a month ago when they released the English, football shirts that had this, as they called it, playful spin on a St.

George cross on the back of the shirt. It was not. It was red and purple and I’m sure a lot of people said it looked like a pride flag. Which, if you are very concerned about a St. George cross is going to really irk you. So they went very, very traditional. Every item has a union jack on the back or on the sleeve.

These are red, white, and blue in the traditional English, uh, British flag colors. You know, no little, Oh, let’s make it a slightly different shade of blue. No. Very standard track suits, very standard running shorts, tank tops, Great Britain emblazoned across the front. I don’t think they obviously changed the designs based on what Nike was doing, but I think they saw the way the wind was blowing, that non traditional designs in Great Britain have not been well received for other teams.

And now, Adidas is getting this great press saying, No, we’ve gone very traditional. And they look, I mean, you’re going to know a British athlete from a mile away. But is that the point of a kid?

Jill: I can’t argue with that thinking, right? Um, USA unveiled its podium outfit. This is a blue track suit with an embedded pattern that makes it look, uh, so it’ll catch the light.

So it doesn’t look like bejeweled, but it’s going to catch the light and be a little funky. And the A nice feature of it. It’s got a magnetic zipper.

Alison: So these were unveiled on the Today Show. Actually, I think this morning, while we’re taping, with Shukla Sani’s Sonny Choi modeling the female version and Ryan Crouser modeling the male version.

So that was a great visual, seeing the two of them next to each other. It’s like one Sonny Choi equals a third of Ryan Crouser. Um, but the best part of that unveil, it’s a beautiful blue suit. Looks almost like those 1980s, 90s astronaut outfits that they would wear walking to the space shuttle.

Jill: Oh, okay.

Alison: Do you remember those sort of, uh, jumpsuits that they wore? Yeah, but it’s two pieces. It is two pieces, but that’s the, the visual I got. Ryan Crouser threw some shade. at last time at the Tokyo outfits, because he’s made a comment about how these were so much better than the podium outfits that he’s had in the past.

And we remember talking about those white, running suits from Tokyo, sort of looking like hospital scrubs. Yeah. Or like folded paper. So Ryan Crouser and I apparently shared some disdain. And who knew Ryan Crouser was a fashionista?

Jill: Did not know. So, um, the Team USA Opening Ceremony uniforms come out in June, so we will look forward to that.

We also have some more Hospitality House info. Thanks a lot to House Party Blog for pulling that together.

Alison: Speaking of Team USA.

Jill: Team USA announced that that it’s going to sell, day passes, single day passes for Team USA house. It will be 325 euros for the Olympic house and, uh, the house will be open for the Paralympics, which is going to be very cool.

First time. Uh, you can get, all access for 150 euros for the day. Team belgium had early bird pricing that is going to end on april 21 We have not heard what the new pricing will be but we’ll keep an eye on that

Alison: late bird pricing,

Jill: right? Canada has announced its ticket prices. It will be 30 euros for adults and 12 euros for kids Kids under the age of 12, and they recommend, uh, purchasing your tickets in advance because they think it’s going to be a hot item.

Korea is going to have a house. We don’t know many details about that, but it’s going to exist, and it will be, uh, another good house to visit. The French Association of Olympic and Sports Collectors is also going to host a house for pin trading and collector trading that will also be in the Parc which is also where a lot of the hospitality houses are going to be.

And it’s going to be near Club France, entirely. dedicated to collecting. It’ll be on the ground floor of Folies L5 des Merveilles des Villettes Makers. Uh, we will have a link to that. They’re also going to host an exhibition, so if you’re not a super collector and don’t, you’re probably going to get sucked into pin trading.

But, uh, Um, if you want to go see another sports history exhibit while you’re there, there’s going to be one at the collector’s

Alison: house. And we will have links to all the pictures of the outfits and all the links to the ticket availability for the houses in the show notes.

Jill: Yes. At Team USA Media Summit.

Peacock had a big, uh, display lounge area, so we set

Alison: A little living room for us.

Jill: Yes, we sat down with the Peacock people and saw the mock up for some of the new features they’re going to have for, uh, Paris 2024. They learned a lot from Tokyo 2020.

Alison: We did talk to them about feed beefs and they were not surprised and happy that they were work.

They have worked very hard to make some changes and I was very, um, pleased to hear that. So a peacock in the United States, this is only United States availability is 5. 99 a month, 59 for a year. Almost nothing is going to be available. on Peacock free version. That was the impression I got. They were not clear, but it sounded like you can watch it live and that’s about it.

But the pay version, you’re going to have multi cameras to choose from in four sports, wrestling, soccer, football, and gymnastics. They are still deciding how they’re going to do track and field. So that is, for example, in gymnastics, You’re watching gymnastics. They’ve got four choices within that sport. So during rotations, you can watch whomever you want.

Then they’re also having multi screen options. So you can have four screens going at once. And you can choose identifiers within those screens. So they will have them marked as, for example, here’s a medal event happening. Here’s an elimination risk happening.

Jill: Yeah, that’s what they call the discovery view.

If you weren’t sure what to watch, they’d have a four screen section up and just a little thing at the top that says, this is a medal event. This is a first time Olympian. Something to get you to understand why this might be important to watch. Now, or you can just

Alison: straight up multi screen it.

Jill: Yes. the multi screen thing looked like it was going to work really well.

I will say that, They tried really hard to organize things better. So when you get to the homepage on the left bar, when you get to the homepage of peacock on the left bar, uh, you, there’s going to be the Olympic rings at the Paralympics. It’ll switch to the Gitos, the, Sports are all going to be kind of kind of near the top of the scroll down menu so you can click for sports.

Alison: big change is Paralympics is not going to just be dumped as Paralympics. You’re going to be able to navigate by sport for the Paralympics. You’re going to be able to navigate by day. So if you’re. want to make sure you don’t miss all the swimming finals, you can then go in and add it to something called my stuff, sort of working like a personal VCR

Jill: or DVR.

Let’s, let’s bring you up to the 2000s. It’s going to be your personal DVR.

Alison: Okay, fine. And you don’t have to think about it or worry about when is it being broadcast? When is it being streamed? What’s the time difference? No, you can just put that in there. And

Jill: Set it and forget it. Right. The one thing they did not know the answer to, and hopefully we will get an answer, is to how long after the games, the, uh, all of the content will stay online because it’s gonna, it, it went away in Tokyo, maybe around October or November, and it will definitely go away again.

That could be due to. rights that could also be due to space. It’s going to be a lot of content and it’s going to take up a lot of storage space online. So they’re only going to have it there for a limited time. So you’ll want to, uh, if you put a bunch of stuff in my stuff, you’ll want to blow through that pretty soon after the games are over.


Alison: one of the coolest features that I loved for the very casual fan was they have, they’re going to do the gold zone again so that all day they’re showing multiple different events. But if you want to stay with that event before. the studio and the producer switch you, there’s going to be a little window that pops up that says, do you want to stay with?

swimming before we switch to soccer, and you’ll be able to choose that. So for casual viewers, if you get sucked in to handball, and you must know who wins that Japan France handball game, you can stay there.

Jill: also got news from NBC of who the closing ceremony host Will be and that will be Mike Tirico again Terry Gannon Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir who are a typical figure skating broadcast team and late night Show host tonight show host Jimmy Fallon So if you watched the opening ceremonies team be on Jimmy Fallon and Mike Tirico did the hey Why don’t you come and host the closing ceremonies with me and Jimmy was like really do you mean it?

Yeah, that had to be a whole put on You

Alison: Yeah.

Jill: Anyway, that’ll be interesting to see.

Alison: And given that they’re having, I mean, because we were so surprised in Tokyo, how well and how much we enjoyed the Gannon, Lipinski, Weir setup. Yes. And especially Johnny Weir was fantastic at that closing ceremony for Tokyo.

So now they’ve got a really full booth. I mean, I know they’re not all going to be in the booth, but how are they working at all of these people and all of these personalities and how they’re going to use them?

Jill: It’ll be interesting, so something to look forward to. one final piece of Paris 2024 news.

The clearing of the homeless has begun. The Guardian reported that up to 450 people squatting in an abandoned bus company headquarters in Vitry Sorsen have been shipped to either Orleans or Bordeaux. Many of these were refugees who had official status.

And many of them even had jobs, but it appears to be very, very difficult for refugees and people not born in France to find places to live because landlords do not want to rent to them. So that’s, uh, and so they’ve been squatting. in this place. And now the French officials would like to have very nice looking city.

And so they have been cleared out. And I got to tell you, I immediately thought of Berlin 1936 when I saw this. Oh, I know. Wow. I know that that goes to an extreme, but I really, I understand you want to put the best foot forward, but let’s figure it. I mean, It feels like the effort there’s not enough of an effort made to fix the problem and if for many I mean what’s gonna happen to some of these people who had jobs got shipped off now They’re gonna lose their job and what happens to them.

They’re already dealing with a whole lot of problems and trauma from having to up end the uproot their lives and Come to a new country and try to assimilate

Alison: Let’s see what the press does with this, if anything.

Jill: We’ll see. We’ll see. But it’s, uh, not great. I will say that. But, uh, I, I hope that future host cities Work on addressing the problems and this with it with landlords.

If the problem is landlords not wanting to rent, we change that culture, figure out what to do to change that culture. So you’re not causing even more trauma onto people’s lives just for your party.

Alison: Los Angeles. Take note.

Jill: Right.

[00:51:51] TKFLASTAN Update

Alison: Welcome to Shooklastan. It

Jill: is the time of the show where we check in with our team, Keep the Flame Alive. These are past guests of the show who make up our very own citizenship of Shooklastan, along with you listeners. Uh, first up, Sean Callahan has been nominated for yet another New England Emmy Award for his news coverage.

Alison: Will he talk

Jill: to us anymore? Oh, oh, don’t, don’t throw that down. I can hear the email beep already.

Alison: Kelly Chang and partner Sarah Hughes have officially qualified for Team USA, uh, the beach volleyball roster for Paris.

Jill: Yay. And that’s going to do it for this episode.

let us know what you’re excited about Paris. with less than 100 days to go.

Alison: Find us on X, YouTube and Instagram at flamealivepod Send us an email, Sean Callahan at flamealivepod at gmail. com Call or text us at 208 352 6348 That’s 208 flame it. Chat with us and other fans on our Facebook group, Keep the Flame Alive Podcast, and sign up for our weekly newsletter with even more Olympic and Paralympic info for you at our website

Jill: So we talked today about, uh, small NGBs not having great budgets. our guest next week is really interesting. He’s a Ramsey Baker. He is a senior vice president at aggregate. He is a senior vice president at aggregate sports, which manages sponsorship and media deals for national governing bodies.

So we’ll understand how that process works and how small. NGBs can get sponsorship and money and TV rights and help promote the sport even more. It’s a really interesting conversation and we hope you come back here for it. Uh, thank you so much for listening and until next time, keep the flame alive.