July 31, 2012
LONDON CALLING (DAY 7)
The long and short of it, sleeves, that is
By Michael Lewis
MANCHESTER – It was easy to pack for the other Summer Olympics I have covered. After all, it was summer. But here in the United Kingdom, summer isn't always summer, at least as I know it.
Back home I took a look at the long-range weather forecast and noticed the temperatures in Glasgow, Manchester and Newcastle -- cities where I would be covered the early-round matches -- to be in the 60's and 70's.
So, I took four long-sleeve shirts, just in case. With space being at a premium in my luggage -- and I didn't want to lug around too much from city to city -- I tried to keep the amount of my clothes down to a bare minimum.
Surprise! The forecast was just a bit off.
Temperatures in Glasgow and Manchester the past few days have hovered in the high 50s.
In fact, I was forced to look at a calendar to make sure what month it was. And you know what? Tomorrow (Wednesday) is Aug. 1!
In the spirit of the 1948 Olympics in London, dubbed the Austerity Olympics -- I have been trying to keep my laundry bills down. So, it should not be surprising that I have tried to use those precious long-sleeve shirts sparingly.
For example, I decided to wear a green short-sleeve shirt to the U.S. team's walk-through at Old Trafford -- the sight of Tuesday night's game against North Korea -- on Monday.
Why burn the use of a long-sleeve shirt when I would be inside most of the day?
But even the best laid plans sometimes go awry. For some reason I could not send emails on my AOL account, although I could receive them when I was on line at Old Trafford.
I did not know if it was a computer issue (probably unlikely), the stadium's wireless system or AOL itself (I suspected it had to be AOL-related).
Since I was sending stories to Newsday and to some other websites, at first I was quite worried.
Fortunately, I had another account that wasn't AOL and managed to contact a Newsday sports editor.
Then, as mysteriously as the problem appeared, it vanished as I gleefully discovered in one of my endless attempts to send emails.
In the 17-plus years of using AOL I have never encountered such a problem.
Strange, very strange.
Well, at least I know if something like that happens on deadline I have a Plan B and an email to use.
And oh yes, since I will be sitting outside for two hours on Tuesday, I will be wearing one of those precious shirts – with a jacket.
With Tuesday's game-time temperatures slated to be 60 degrees with rain, that is Plan A, B and C.