Did you watch the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympics last Friday? I did and thought it was a great spectacle. It was also very moving at a number of points. In particular, the silence to remember those no longer with us, and the tribute to those killed in London’s 7/7 bombings.
I certainly did not expect to hear Abide With Me sung, nor with such reverence. I can’t be sure but it looked to me that the ballet performed during the singing of that hymn comprised of 52 people, the number killed in the 7/7 bombings, fewer than 24 hours after the selection of London was announced.
To follow that up with the parade of nations, some of them sounding suspiciously made up, was just fabulous. And let’s not begin to talk about the Queen and James Bond parachuting out of a helicopter, Mr Bean’s musical talent, or the ingenuity of the scene change from the idyll of England’s green and pleasant land to the hardship and rapid social change brought about the industrial revolution, and of course the fireworks.
So forgive me if I am in the grip of a certain amount of patriotic fervour at the moment. Seems I’m not alone. A number of outfitters are seeking to capture that mood and are offering the opportunity to wear the flag. How much more patriotic than that can one get?
If you are an Olympian you more or less wear the flag for your day job. but what about the rest of us? Hawes & Curtis have a whole line in patriotic wear, M&S have a selection and there is a whole website www.unionjackwear.co.uk dedicated to the subject.
Now if your plan is simply to get noticed, or to look silly, there are all sorts of possibilities out there. If however you want to do this in a certain amount of style a little more effort might be required. Here are some of my favourites.