21st Century Boy - Tom Daley




     
    
'Courage is the thing.
All goes if courage goes.'
                                                                 J M Barrie
(quote from Tom Daley's  'My story')



for everything that you always wanted to know about Peter Pan and J M Barrie - see

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So why '21st Century Boy' ? - Well some pundit (a journalist actually) suggested that Tom Daley epitomised all that was best in the youth of the 21st Century - and this may be true.

The 20th Century saw the creation of the concept of youth.
What we often don't realises is that concept of  'youth' - 'young people' itself is a very odd concept.
For example, before the nineteenth century there was no such thing as 'young people' - they were just 'miniature adults' (see right).



The reality of youth, and youth culture emerged at the end of the Second World War - and was very much an import from the United States.


Initially youth was in opposition to their elders, beginning with the Beatnicks, in their duffel coats and roll neck pullovers, and then with the Teddy Boys (see right above), aping their Edwardian predecessors (hence 'Teddy').
The Teddy Boys morphed into Rockers and Hell's Angels on motorbikes, and the new boys on the block were the Mods, on their scooters and dressed Italian style.

Later came the 'Punks' with their safety-pins and 'bondage', and rather more acceptable were the 'New Romantics' (see Duran-Duran left) - although their 'gender-bending' caused considerable consternation to many members of the older generation.
But what about the 21st Century - well, youth culture has radically fragmented, and includes such diverse groups as Hip Hop, Chavs, Indie and Emos (see right above), Scene Kids, Nu-Metal, Rave, Goths and Preppies (see left) to name just a few.
Most of these subgroups are peripheral, however, and do not really represent viable alternative lifestyles.
So what's all this got to do with 'our Tom' ?

Well, contrary to some reports to be found in the media, young people in the 21st Century are not all binge drinking looters and rioters.
If anything, the dominant youth style, amongst white teens, is the Preppie style, which is remarkably conservative and conformist, both in appearance and general social attitudes
Preppy, preppie, or prep (all abbreviations of the word preparatory) refers to a modern, widespread clique, originating in the United States, which is often considered a subculture.

While originally a style restricted to the wealthy upper classes, the preppy style has now filtered down to to the white working class.
Characteristics of preps include a particular subcultural speech (awesome, totally, fab, omg etc), vocabulary, accent, dress, mannerisms, and etiquette.
Preppies are depicted as a shallow and transparent group primarily concerned with extrinsic things.
Preppy fashion became popular when designers like Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Marc Jacobs, and Luella Bartley added the preppy style into their clothes.
The main concerns of preppies are popularity within their own social group, physical appearance, and material possessions - remind you of anyone ?


Now this new Preppy generation is very different from its forebears.

The generation of Teddy Boys, Bikers, Mods and Rockers, Punks (see right) and New Romantics all had one overriding ambition, and that was not to be like their parents.
In achieving this aim, in most cases, they caused their parents heartache, and earned the disapproval of the older generation.
The 21st Century generation, in this respect, is very different.

They are essentially conformist.
Mum and dad want their offspring to be attractive, successful, and moneyed, and so do their children.
And children are now so pampered and guarded, from their earliest years, that it is difficult to imagine all but the most rebellious or disturbed offending their parents in any way.
This is a generation with no 'fire', despite the much touted 'Olympic Flame', and the generation to be 'inspired', will only be inspired to mindlessly conform.
And 'our Tom' is thus the epitome of this new generation - truly a '21st Century Boy !'

He is polite, of a sunny disposition, always clean and well turned out, with a dazzling plastic smile.
And he is usually deferential to his elders.
His ambition is to be famous and rich - and that's it !
Read is autobiography - written in Prep-speak, (a bit like New-speak - see Orwell 1984) - and you will find no 'inner life' - no soul-searching.
There is no metaphysical core, no cultural ideal motivating this boy's remarkable career - just a blind striving for fame and fortune.
The nearest Tom ever gets to idealism is a rather outdated striving to 'win for his country - Great Britain' - and hence all the Union Jacks, with their unpleasant associations with extreme right wing politics.

And so we begin with our 21st Century boy - the first child of a working class couple living in Plymouth.
Tom, the first child, is taken by his doting parents to various out of school activities, including swimming and martial arts.
He's a good boy, slim and shy, - always working hard at school, attending to his homework, although he is not as tidy at home as his always immaculate appearance would make one think.
But then Tom gets up on a diving board - a fateful act that changes everything !

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TOM DALEY - EARLY DAYS


Robert and Debbie
Wedding Photo
see





Thomas Robert Daley - born 21 May 1994, Plymouth, England, United Kingdom
see
http://www.penguin.co.uk/nf/Book/BookDisplay/0,,9780718158071,00.html#




Robert and Tom Daley
Bath Time




The Daley Brothers
Tom, Will and Ben and a Friend
see
http://www.penguin.co.uk/nf/Book/BookDisplay/0,,9780718158071,00.html#




The Daley Brothers 




The Australian Youth Olympics in January 2007 welcomed Tom as part of Team GB’s young athletes group.
Now competing against elite world class peers, he continued to impress.
At age 13, still two years below the minimum age requirement for the Youth Olympics, Tom was given special dispensation to compete.
Despite what might have been a disadvantage he proved his ability by winning a Silver medal in the 10m Platform Synchro event and finished fourth in the individual competition.



Tom Daley - Pretending to be an Elf
Martial Arts
















Young Tom

see
http://www.penguin.co.uk/nf/Book/BookDisplay/0,,9780718158071,00.html#


At age 7 Tom’s diving career began after displaying incredible raw talent for the sport and a strong competitive instinct.
In June 2004 Tom made his competitive début and became the youngest ever under 18s Champion at the Nationals.
He hasn’t been beaten in his age group, at any National Championship event, ever since!




Tom Daley - Underwater

Tom and Robert and Debbie Daley - Early Days




Tom and Robert Daley - Early Days



Tom Daley - Skiing






Tom Daley - Training - Early Days



Tom Daley Diving - Early Days
Tom Daley - Early Publicity Shot





TOM GROWS UP




Tom Daley - School Boy



Tom Daley - Wet Top




Tom Daley - Wet Top




Tom Daley - Underwater




Tom Daley - Underwater




Tom Daley - Training




Tom Daley - Training




Tom Daley - Training




Tom Daley and Pete Waterfield - Training





Tom Daley at Home




Tom Daley at Home



Tom Daley at Home




Tom Daley at Home



Tom Daley Modelling Superdry





邱波
Qui Bo - Tom Daley's Nemesis ?




邱波
Qui Bo - Tom Daley's Nemesis ?
Qiū Bō; born January 31, 1993 in Neijiang, Sichuan is a Chinese male diver from the People's Republic of China.
In the 2011 FINA Diving World Series - Beijing, Qiu received no fewer than 25 perfect 10s to score a historic 609.20 in the 10m event. Then in the 2011 World Aquatics Championships held in Shanghai, Qiu won two gold medals in the platforms. At the end of 2011, Qiu was selected as the Male Diver of the Year by FINA.




邱波
Qui Bo - Tom Daley's Nemesis ?




邱波
Qui Bo - Tom Daley's Nemesis ?




邱波
Qui Bo - Tom Daley's Nemesis ?





TOM DALEY AND THE 2012 LONDON GAMES


 "Winning a medal would make all the struggles that I've had worthwhile. It's been my dream since a very young age to compete at an Olympics.


Diving Boards
Aquatic Centre
2012 London Olympic Games

 "Winning a medal would make all the struggles that I've had worthwhile. It's been my dream since a very young age to compete at an Olympics."

OLYMPIA 2012


Olympic Stadium - London - 27th July 2012



Olympic Bell - London - July 2012



Olympic Rings - London - 27th July 2012



Tom Daley and Pete Waterfield
Opening Ceremony - London - 27th July 2012




Tom Daley and Tonia Couch
Advertising for Adidas with Stewie




Tom Daley
London 2012 Games
Tom's room in the Olympic Village




Tom Daley with the Team GB Diving Squad





Diving Boards
Aquatic Centre
2012 London Olympic Games





Tom Daley on the 10 Meter Diving Board
Aquatics Centre




Tom Daley
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'




 Tom Daley
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'




 Tom Daley
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'




 Tom Daley
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'




Tom Daley
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'





Tom Daley
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'





Tom Daley
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'





Tom Daley
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'





Tom Daley and Peter Waterfield
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'




Tom Daley and Peter Waterfield
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'




Tom Daley and Peter Waterfield Diving
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'







Tom Daley and Peter Waterfield Diving
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'






Tom Daley Diving
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'




Tom Daley and Peter Waterfield Diving
London 2012 Games
wearing Team GB Adidas 'speedos'



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30th July 2012 - Olympic Aquatic Centre


Tom Daley and Pete Waterfield missed out on an Olympic medal in the synchronised 10m platform event after coming fourth at the Aquatics Centre.
Daley, 18, and his 31-year-old team-mate had led the competition after three of their six dives but a poor next effort saw them drop to fourth.
The all-important fourth-round dive was, ironically, their best dive, but Tom came out too early.
The Chinese had a 19-point advantage over the home favourites and increased the gap between them and the pursuing pack with a 92.66 off a back three-and-a-half somersault in the penultimate round.
Daley and Waterfield still had realistic hopes of a medal, but Daley was fractionally off on their extremely testing forward four-and-a-half somersault.
When their final dive - a back two-and-a half somersault with two-and-a half twists - scored them no more than 91.80 for a total of 454.65, their fourth place was confirmed.
China's Yuan Cao and Yanquan Zhang took gold with a total score of 486.78.
Mexico clinched silver on 468.90 ahead of the United States duo on 463.47 with the British pair on 454.65.

Tom Daley, one of the best-known British athletes competing in London, will now pin his medal hopes on the solo 10m platform competition on Friday, 10 August.

Pete Waterfield was competing at his fourth Games, and had previously won a synchro diving silver  medal  with his former partner Leon Taylor (see right) in Athens in 2004.
Perhaps on this occasion Waterfield was paired with the wrong partner.


Tom Daley - Olympic Aquatic Centre - London 2012
Maybe a little too 'cute' for his own good ?


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31 July 2012

BEWARE ! - if you use the internet - the 'Thought Police' are on alert.
It may be 2012 - but really it's 1984 !
If you are a follower of Tom Daley on Twitter be very, very careful what you tweet !
While Tom loves to use Twitter to tell us, almost minute by minute, what he is doing, and uses it to make money by 'casually' dropping into his tweets references to his many sponsors' products, you are not permitted to make perfectly reasonable comments if they in any way 'upset' or 'disturb' 'our Tom'.
Tom doesn't like being 'bullied' as we well know, although being bullied is just one of the facts of life for a large proportion of ordinary people.
Adulation with regard to Tom is fine, but anything that is a little bit negative is seen as malicious 'abuse' in this politically correct madhouse we call GB.
(Political correctness is, in fact, a definition of a totalitarian society)
The Tweet in question was, 'You let your dad down, I hope you know that.' - sent by a 17 year old boy - who subsequently apologised to Tom for the original Tweet.
Now how could that be construed as malicious ? - it just a matter of opinion - verging on fact.
Yet, in GB 2012, such a comment, made about a celebrity like Tom Daley can get you arrested !
But instead of ignoring the insensitive Tweet (how many harassing and irritating trolls must Daley have ?), Tom decided to RT it (re-tweet), with the message: ‘After giving it my all...you get idiot's sending me this...’.
Tom must have known that one or two of his 792,000 fans would leap to his defence.

Perhaps at this point we should remember what George Orwell had to say about freedom of speech and expression - 


'If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they don't want to hear.'

Subsequent to the initial tweets by Reece Messer, (who lives in a Weymouth bedsit and suffers from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder - ADHD), supporters of Tom Daley sent the 17 year old numerous vicious, obscene homophobic tweets (and none of daley's supporters were arrested) - implying that Messer was 'gay' on the basis of his profile photo, (see left) - If Messer's profile photo is proof of homosexuality, then what can we say about Daley's own photos (Fabulous Magazine ?), and his fluffy toy strewn bedroom).
It all sounds like a very stupid, and nasty, kiddy's argument.
What Reece did and said was foolish, insensitive and immature.
Quite possibly, it was even a transgression of Malicious Communications Act 1988, but this would never have escalated into a criminal investigation and arrest if Tom Daley had simply decided to turn the other cheek.
But then it is possible that he was 'instructed' not to turn the other cheek, and this is interesting, because what is strange about this 'Tweet mania' is the fact that after the Beijing debacle there was an equally frantic media scrum - on that occasion about the row between Blake Aldridge and Robert Daley - which later involved the police (as in the present case), as Blake appeared to be 'fitted up' on more than one occasion  - (by whom one might wonder).
It seems that when Tom 'falls short', and doesn't come up with the goods, then 'his people' immediately set in motion a diversion - to take attention away from Tom's poor performance.

This, of course,  conveniently ignores Tom's own 'abuse' of 邱波  (Qiu Bo), whom Tom described as a 'robot' - which is about as 'abusive' and demeaning as you can get, (it also could be interpreted as racist - but then 邱波 is Chinese so political correctness doesn't matter ?).
And Qiu Bo now has a problem.
If he beats Tom in the 10 meter solo, then he may be accused of upsetting Tom, - risking possible arrest ?
But to be serious, Tom, laid himself open to the sort of attack that occurred on Twitter by telling the media that, “I’ve got to try to win the medal first, but definitely I’d dedicate it to him." him here being the late Robert Daley.

Tom's 'mentors' at Professional Sports Group have been encouraging him to repeatedly refer to his father's death, in the autobiography, the BBC Documentary, and in various media interviews, even to the extent of revealing that Tom keeps his father's ashes in his bedroom - ('creepy' to say the least)

The reason - simple - to get sympathy for Tom, so that if his bid for medals comes to nothing, then he would have the excuse of his father's death - and the media would still love him, and 'Brand Daley' would continue from strength to strength, regardless of a diving shambles at the Game, and Professional Sports Group, and Jamie Cunningham would continue to make lots of money.
The Tweet in question, from Cunningham's point of view was 'heaven sent'.
A huge wave of sympathy could be created from the idea of poor little Tom being 'abused and bullied', and this would sweep away the fact that it was Professional Sports Group's determination to create a crescendo of advertising hype, using Tom, just before the Games that may well have contributed to the boy's poor performance (see coments by Alexei Evangulov).


MORE DETAILS OF THE 'STORY'

Police leaders have admitted publicly that they are being dragged into too many Twitter disputes as a row raged over the decision to arrest a youth who allegedly 'abused' Olympic diver Tom Daley.
We even had a government minister, Hugh Robertson, being interviewed about what amounts to playground taunts - after all, Tom Daley and Reece Messer (see right) are only teenage boys.
Significantly the minister, along with spokespersons for Team GB and  the Games Organisers were careful to quickly change the subject, and refused to be 'drawn' on the matter.



Simon Reed (see left), vice-chairman of the Police Federation, said forces do not have the resources to monitor the internet.
He said: ‘There is legislation which concerns causing harassment, alarm or distress. But can we police the internet when someone upsets someone else?
I don’t think we have the resources to do that. We can’t have a free-for-all online but we cannot involve the police every time something unpleasant is said.’


So the police, after being dragged into a silly spat between two teenage boys, (by whom we wonder), quickly tried to extricate themselves from the ridiculous affair.

Meanwhile, a Welsh Premier League footballer midfielder Daniel Thomas was suspended after an 'abusive', allegedly 'homophobic' message was sent to Daley.
Port Talbot FC officials stressed their player had been the victim of a 'misguided prank' after leaving his phone unattended - but confirmed 28-year-old Thomas had been suspended while they looked into the matter - someone else being 'fitted up' perhaps ?


Tom, it is reported, was, by the 1st August, 'unfazed' by the whole matter - so why all the fuss in the first place ?
Well, as already explained, it did take the focus off the failure in the pool - and whip up a huge wave of sympathy for Tom ! - just as the 'spat' at Beijing did.



Meanwhile, we learn that right up to the moment that he was to climb the 10 meter board, 'our Tom' was 'plugging' brands - this time Dr Dre Beat Union Flag headphones (see right).
Now it's unlikely that he bought them, like normal people have to, despite the fact that he has more than enough money to pay for one, as these 'phones were 'delivered' to the British Olympic Team,
(he probably now has enough in the bank to buy one for all the Olympic contestants, in all sports, (and their 'mates'), and still have 'change').


Rule 40 in the Olympic charter, however, forbids athletes from promoting any personal sponsors on social media during the Games unless they are official Olympic sponsors.
Tom didn't Tweet about the 'phones, (as far as we know), but wearing them in such a public venue, in front of some 7 million viewers on the BBC, may be an even better 'plug'.
Other reports, however, suggest that the 'phones were Sennheiser HD 25 Adidas Original headphones, complete with Union Jack design (see left), so complying with Locog's branding rules, as Adidas are an official sponsor. Either way, Tom didn't have to buy them, and he was still relentlessly 'plugging' merchandise.
Perhaps if Tom just concentrated on his diving, rather than making money he might do a little better !


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TOM DALEY - BRONZE MEDALIST


Tom Daley managed to win an Olympic Bronze Medal in the 10 Meter Platform Diving at the Aquatic Centre in London - 11th August 2012



Before the contest Tom said he would probably only win Bronze - and he was right !
Now is that really the attitude to go for when competing in an Olympic event - but then I suppose he wanted to let his fans down gently.




So why didn't Tom win Gold ?
To answer that, of course, if you want to be honest, you have to risk the police breaking down your front door - but we'll take the risk.




There are undoubtedly at least 5 reasons for Tom's failure to win the Gold medal that he should have won.

1 - He has experienced a growth spurt recently. This affects the brain's ability to judge accurately where it is in space, because the body's centre of gravity has altered. This may have been exacerbated by his recent weight loss.
2 - Poor coaching. The poor showing in both synchro and solo events point to the fact that there is a deficiency in the coaching regime.
3 - Tom's underestimation of the Chinese divers - suggesting that they were 'robots' and would 'break under pressure' - resulting in him not training sufficiently rigorously.
4 - The failure of  David Sparkes and Alexei Evangulov to bring Tom into line early enough when he was obviously spending too much time on non-diving commitments, which were being organised by Jamie Cunningham of Professional Sports Group.
5 - The initial contractual commitment to Professional Sports Group made by Tom's parents.



Jamie Cunningham has a lot to answer for in taking Tom's eye 'off the ball' in the run up to the Olympic Games.
Tom may have ended up with plenty of gold in the bank - thanks to Jamie - but he failed to get gold round his neck.



Tom Daley Celebrates his Third Place in the 10 Meter Diving



Tom Daley and the GB Diving Team Celebrate(?) in the Pool


This is the oddest aspect of the Final of the Olympic 10 meter Diving Contest.
The whole diving team, and the coaches, invaded the pool to perform an over the top celebration - presumably of Tom coming third (when he should have won gold).
It was noticeable that the Americans and Chinese, who had won Gold and Silver, did not make a splash, but behaved in a polite and respectful manner, as one would expect of professional athletes.
Tom, afterwards, said it was an "awesome moment" (awesome is 'prep-speak' for excellent or very good), and that his colleagues had planned the stunt in advance.
He said that everybody was just so overjoyed at his achievement - as we "don't normally get a medal" in the diving.
It also meant that the team had secured funding for the next Olympics.
Significantly Tom said, 'the bronze felt like a gold' - and that comment probably slipped out, as it seems that was the motivation behind the post-contest hype.
If British diving - and more importantly 'Brand Daley' are to prosper then, by using 'smoke and mirrors' the bronze must seem to be gold - and one suspects the distant hand of Jamie Cunningham's behind the supposedly spontaneous celebration in the pool.
However, the bronze was in no way a media coup for Tom, or Professional Sports Group, as Tom's poor result failed to reach the front pages of the following morning's papers.
Looked at objectively, the results of the GB Diving team were very poor, and one would hope that those responsible for the organisation and training of British divers would consider their positions very carefully, and hopefully take the honourable course of action.
Perhaps we should take a lesson from the real Olympic Games.
For the ancient Greeks there was no particular honour in taking part - the only honour was in winning, which for them meant coming first !


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OLYMPIC LEGACY


I think if I hear the word legacy again I might go crazy !

The last time there was an Olympic Games in London in 1948 there was no talk of legacy.
That was the 'austerity games'. The Second World War had just ended and there was no money for anything - and yet Britain put on a good show.
Male athletes at the games were given a packed lunch of sandwiches and an apple, (and a pair of y-fronts (?) - not much compared to the hundreds of thousands that athletes make today (Tom - I hope that your reading this).
And remember - the people at that time had lost family members, homes, careers and almost everything - but didn't 'bleat on' about it - but instead got on with a great games !
But there was a legacy - even if no one spoke of it.

I went to school in the '50s and '60s. After junior school I went to a boy's school.

In both schools sport was pivotal. There were regular PE (Physical Education) lessons, and regular Games lessons - football or rugby in winter and field events in summer, and once every week there was swimming (right up to the age of 16 years - see right).
There were regular football and rugby matches between local schools, and an annual school swimming gala at the end of each summer term.
And once a year there was a borough sports (see left) in which all the schools in the borough competed against one another.


At my boy's school the boys idolised the PE/Games masters (Mr Evans and Mr Russell), and they in turn bought out the best in sporting an athletic abilities in their charges.
Now I train for three hours a day, (gym and pool) for seven days a week (Compare Tom Daley - six hours a week, for six days a week) - but that is not part of a 'legacy' - that's just normal - but not for people now.
My generation became, on average, obese an unhealthy (but not as obese and unhealthy of the upcoming generation).
What went wrong ?
Well, the intervening years complacency and affluence, and the rise of sedentary entertainment and occupations ruined the later generations.
And a bit of 'legacy' will not cure this problem.
Olympians are few and far between - but good health and fitness should be the birthright of all - but will only be achieved by a total overhaul of the values of our society.
At present we are too full of self-congratulation over the recent Games.
We will see if that 'good feeling' can be transformed into a youthful, happy and healthy society.


_________________________________________




SPLASH
It’s loud. We’re live. We’re ready to dive’.

Tom knows it's 'going down the tubes'
That was the opening salvo from Gabby Logan (cocktail dress) and Vernon Kaye ('long' shorts) to ITV’s new Saturday night stab at riding the wave of the Olympic feel good factor – Splash!

In the run up to last year’s Olympics, Tom Daley was the toast of the nation.
The cute, media-friendly diver was going to be our big medal hope: young, tanned and toned, he was bound to win gold.
Except that actually he’s not all that great a diver.
Now he is one of the best in the world, but he’s not the best.
Which is a shame, because his attempts for the gold medal got hyped out of all proportion.


Tom Daley
Addidas Advertising
Jamie Cunningham
Poor coaching by Andy Banks, and Tom's management (particularly the money grabbing, Dubai based, Jamie Cunningham) who insisted on him making endless advertising commercials (Addidas) and photo-shoots, as well as Tom's book launch, meant that he only achieved a bronze medal.

But back to 'Splash !' - The crowd was insipid for everything other than the first three minutes of the show when Tom Daley appeared in his Addidas trunks (at which point they screamed so much that you couldn't hear the actual presenters trying to read their auto-cue).
The TV audience, however, seemed unimpressed.
Twitter was aghast, with people literally not being sure whether they were part of a massive inside joke or not.
'Air-head' ? - Tom Daley Reading the Reviews
Does he ever get dressed ?
Without overstatement, it was the worst thing on television, and the crassest and most feeble attempt to capitalise on the jingoistic spirit of the Olympics.
And Tom Daley was apparently oblivious to the terribleness of it all.
Which leaves us with a question..... Is Tom Daley an 'air-head' ?
Now he has A levels, so presumably he can't be that stupid, but whenever he gives an interview his comments and answers are so vacuous that one if forced to wonder if he has any opinions about anything (apart from 'mentally ill' individuals who dare to criticise him).
And then, of course, there is his mindless biography ('My Story')!

'Splash !' sees Olympic diver Tom Daley 'train' 15 'celebrities' to dive in front of judges - but viewers said it has plunged television to “a new low”.
No bombing allowed... but that is exactly what is happening to Tom Daley’s television show.
What this is, in fact, is an attempt to exploit the public’s love affair with the shiny-toothed young twinky hero in tiny Speedos, Tom Daley, who is both 'coach' and cheer leader for the series.
It’s one of those simple formulas really... People love Tom (well, teenage girls and gay guys), and Tom dives.
Plus people love celebrities, especially when they’re being put through the wringer.
Which equals, famous people ‘going on a journey’ (of between three and 10 metres) while Tom smiles a lot and says 'well done'.

Andy Banks
Jo Brand - Diving Expert ?
Oh, and two of  the judges are nasty.
Playing the baddies are Tom’s trainer Andy Banks (why no gold for Tom ?) and fellow diver Leon Taylor.

(Now if I was Andy Banks, I would keep a very low profile, and not appear on TV, considering the appalling showing made by British Diving in the recent Olympics)

And to balance out their no doubt impending maliciousness and vitriol, Jo Brand was on hand to offer her own expertise (?).
In saying that, to be fair, they weren't actually that harsh.
But secondly, because as they continually pointed out, as one celebrity after another toppled into the drink, it really is a very difficult thing to do.
It is also, sadly, dull. It just that it totally lacks any drama.

Leon Taylor and baby Tom
Leon Taylor
Now it is a fact that diving is not an exciting sport - even when people of Olympic standard dive.
A lot of waiting around, climbing steps, and then (and don't blink, or you'll miss it) a couple of seconds for the dive.
So, not surprisingly, nobody was really interested in diving until cute, little 'twinky' Tom, in his minuscule Speedos, started diving.
Now to make 'Splash !' more 'interesting' the journey that each 'celebrity' makes from poolside to board is presented as a protracted parade of loud music, posing and high fives.
They’re padding it out.
In reality it is a diving competition featuring individuals who can't dive - which is a bit like having swimming races for people who can't swim.
Attempts to heighten the tension involved showing us some training injuries.
As sad music played, we witnessed in pre-recorded films presenter Jenni Falconer in tears with a nasty shoulder and Benidorm’s Jake Caruso outside A&E with a plaster on his nose, having banged his hooter on the bottom of the pool.

Jade Ewen
Jake Caruso
Doing his best worried face, Jake told us 'I don’t know if I’m going to do it'.
However, seeing as he was already sitting by the pool in a dressing gown (that hid a pair of red trunks nearly as small as Tom Daley's GB trunks !) as we watched the film, the odds were everything was going to be all right.
Elsewhere, Sugarbabe Jade Ewen managed to avoid being splashed all over the morning showbiz columns by dragging her skimpy, golden bikini top back into position just before she emerged from the pool after her dive.

Helen Lederer
Comedy actress Helen Lederer (hasn't she got fat !) braved it out, but was clearly having the worst time of her life - like most of the TV audience.
Not to mention having to suffer the ignominy of being captured on film during practice being slid into the water on a mat by Tom - rather like a Mafia hit man getting rid of a body in a river.
It was only comedian Omid Djalili who briefly gave the whole thing a bit of a fillip.

Omid Djalili
Dressed like a Victorian strong man, his sheer exuberance coupled with his gutsy approach to the task in hand managed to brighten things up.
However, even a man of Omid’s generous proportions could make barely a ripple on the surface of this damp squib of a show.
Another point that none of the ITV producers seem to have considered is the fact that a swimming pool is a very dull place - (the author of this blog knows, as he spends a couple of hours in a [very upmarket] pool, training, every day).
Even tarted up, for the competition, a pool is not a romantic or tantalising place, and as has been suggested before, diving is not the most compelling of sports.
In addition, swimming pools have a habit of bringing back childhood memories of unpleasant school swimming lessons, or junior swimming club sessions.
Unlike Tom, many people have an aversion to swimming pools, unless it's part of a five star hotel - preferably somewhere very hot.
A show which is supposed to be a 'diving contest', that consists of people who, either can't swim, are frightened of water, or are frightened of heights, are too fat or too old, and who (and this is important) can't dive, is unlikely to be worth watching.

Of course, like so many TV programs, 'Splash !' required sponsorship - in this case Domino’s Pizza 
The fully integrated sponsorship package was negotiated by ITV Commercial and Arena Media on behalf of Domino’s Pizza.


Tom Daley and Domino’s Pizza
Tom Daley and  Nestle
The package has included broadcast, on-line and mobile, and commences 5 January 2013.
An ITV Commercial spokesperson said: "We are very excited for our new entertainment show Splash! to hit screens and entertain families all over Britain. (entertain ?)


Tom Daley - Posing
Tom Daley - 'Six-pack'
We are delighted to welcome Domino’s Pizza on board as the sponsor of the programme, as we believe it will be an ideal platform for the brand to engage with their target audience.
Simon Wallis, sales and marketing director at Domino’s also added: “Our decision to sponsor this brand new show fits perfectly in line with our target audience, promoting Domino’s at the ideal time and in the right place.
The 'target audience' is obviously big fat slobs, glued to their L Z Boys (that's a chair for those not in the know) in front to the TV.
So once again Tom gets associated to purveyors of fattening, unhealthy food - Tom Daley is already associated with Nestle.
So much for the Olympic legacy !
And in case anyone's missed the point - you don't get a 'six-pack' (abdominals) like Tom Daley by eating Pizzas and chocolates.

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China takes silver - at the Olympics

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Tom Daley takes bronze - at the Olympics - Celebrating defeat ?

After the programme Tom said that he may be going to drop a university career for the bright lights of Luton swimming pool’s studios.
Ignoring the massively negative public reaction, and living in cloud-cuckoo-land, Daley said :
'Hopefully it will run for ten years like 'Dancing on Ice' and I can take Vernon’s spot. (I wonder how Vernon feels about that).
But I’d love to do anything like Dermot O’Leary or Ant & Dec, (as far as Ant and Dec are concerned this would involved Tom being cloned - and do we really want two Tom Daleys).
I’d like to present Saturday night TV, that is what I’d ultimately like to do once I’ve finished diving.
I’d like to host 'Splash !'.
That would be my dream job because it is a diving show, a reality show and on Saturday night prime-time'.

Unfortunately for Tom, however, he will have to do much better.
A poor effort at the Olympics (only third), has now been followed by a poor effort on TV.
The only thing that Tom really seems to work at, and succeed at,  is presenting himself as a 'soft porn' twink.
Even his advertising forays have proved less than successful, with his Addidas range now available in 'budget stores' at half the original price, and his biography selling at an equally low price.

Waterstone Book Launch
'Jonathan Ross Show'
On the 'Jonathan Ross Show' Tom made a huge faux-pas when he appeared in a collar and tie and tiny Speedos.
Supposedly intended as a 'joke', I think if most guys appeared in public dressed so totally inappropriately, (not in a swimming pool, at the beach, or at a body-building competition), they would be summarily ejected, or a police constable would be called.
And this is not the first time that Tom has pranced around in just his minuscule Speedos for no good reason.
He performed the same trick at his 'book launch', and for a number of previous TV interviews.
However, it seems likely that someone has had a quiet word in Tom's ear.
Tom in shorts
For 'Splash !', when Tom was wearing trunks, he wore his blue Addidas trunks, which actually seem to be the correct size - and not his Addidas Team GB trunks, (a couple of sizes too small) which barely cover him, or his equally revealing blue Speedos.
What was really strange, though, was Tom, 'preppy' style, appearing in 'long'  grey shorts and a white and green training top, at a swimming pool, when he would actually be justified in wearing trunks.

Tom practices for his male strip show
This was doubtless a huge disappointment to his teen female fans, and his gay male fans, but then possibly someone has decided that Tom is not going to be taken seriously if he continues to present himself and be seen as a 'soft porn' exhibitionist.
Perhaps if 'Splash !' folds, as it probably will, Tom might take up a career as a male stripper, after all he already seems to be practising - (see the pathetic video clip - left)
And as an aside, what has Tom done to his hair ?
He's beginning to look like an un-dyed Jedward !





C O M M E N T

Tom Daley 'checks out' Anthony Ogogo
Anthony Ogogo - Gold Speedos
'Numerous variations of this screen-grab from 'Splash !' were pinged around the virtual world.
It's our Tom with Olympic boxer Anthony Ogogo.
"Are you thinking what we are thinking?" 
While some might think it amusing - it's also rather sad.
Tom sexuality is up for debate - and we  know nothing for sure, except he's clearly 'screaming'.
I wonder if he even knows himself?
And perhaps one should worry about Tom, now he's become a Saturday 'teatime' TV 'superstar' and is regularly 'exposing himself' - meaning just by being himself - he'll just be the subject of ever more scrutiny and speculation - check Twitter for endless comments just on how he walks and talks.
Such is the power of social media this chatter will inevitably transfer into the papers.
This is the modern world; a virtual world where being 'in the closet' is now virtually impossible. 
And PR feeds and 'paparazzi shots' to the press about his possible "girlfriends" will ultimately only make it worse. 
It's already seeping in, slow as sludge - for now.
And who do you think writes the 'celeb mags' and tabloid gossip pages? 
It's gay guys, who think that being 'gay' is almost boringly normal - and that now it's being 'in the closet' that's a little 'queer' - or should we say odd.  
And meanwhile the poor boy could be dying inside, silently 'screaming'.'

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David Sparkes 
ITV's woeful new peaktime Saturday night reality show Splash! has re-ignited anxieties in British Swimming about Tom Daley's commercial commitments away from diving.
Olympic bronze medallist Daley was heavily criticised before London 2012 for not concentrating enough on his sport.
Now British Swimming chief executive David Sparkes has raised concerns over 18-year-old Daley's role as a mentor for the celebrity divers in Splash!

Sparkes said: 'Tom is an incredibly talented young man, but he's yet to achieve his full potential and it's only going to get harder to achieve that Olympic gold medal as he gets older.
'You can rest assured the next Chinese diving superstar will not have such distractions from training.
Jamie Cunningham
'He should look at the example of skaters Torvill and Dean who waited until the end of their competitive careers before doing such programmes. I'm concerned Tom is putting the cart before the horse and I've expressed those concerns to his agent.' (Tom's agent is Jamie Cunningham - see above)


Agent Jamie Cunningham said: 'Whatever people think about the show, Tom has come across incredibly well. We would only agree to such an undertaking at a quiet time of the year.


British Diving performance director Alexei Evangulov had warned last February that Daley faced missing out on an Olympic gold medal unless he reduced his media and sponsorship work.
He said: 'If I had power over this, I would restrict it. If you look at the Chinese, they work three times harder. That's the only secret. Just work hard.'

Andy Banks, the long-term coach of Olympic bronze medallist Tom Daley, fears the teenage diver could walk away from the sport if he continues to receive “grief” from critics of his media commitments.



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