“…yes and there he is – Jimmy Page…”
So, I’m vegetating in front of my TV taking in the closing ceremony of the Olympic games, which to be honest, were pretty frickin’ awesome, when they start doing this ‘handover to London’ bit. It started out amusing enough as the ever flamboyant Boris Johnson (Lord Mayor of London) bounded on to the stage (the commentator used the word ‘flamboyant’ about 10 times) to receive the Olympic flag and wave it about while mouthing stuff inaudibly to the crowd and shaking his fist (I’m not an expert lip-reader but I’m sure he said something like ‘Give us back Hong Kong you motherf*ckers!’) then surprised me with a Ninja-like appearance of none other than a certain James Patrick Page.
This odd looking red double-decker bus drives onto the stage. ‘Cheesy’ I thought. Then a bunch of acrobats and faux-wheelchair-bound folks milled around for a while (frankly the choreography against the backdrop of Zhang Yimou’s vast extravaganza, did look just a little bit school-play-amateurish) followed by the top of the bus unfolding and then this chick appears (Leona Lewis – whoever she is – maybe Carl Lewis’ sister?) on a platform that rises into the air and I’m sitting there thinking she’s gonna do some shit vocal-histrionic-laden Whitney Houston number when the commentator slowly says, his voice rising in excitement ‘and yes – there he is… Jimmy Page!”.
At this point, I sat bolt upright, dropped my baby and my beer onto the floor and sat there aghast, lower jaw flapping around loosely, as he launched into a ripping version of ‘Whole Lotta Love’ for the entire world to see while the chick (now standing and showing some nicely tanned thighs) did her best Robert Plant impersonations. Pagey did great – an awesome rendition of the classic solo, some great lip pouting, a bit of the ol’ stagger and of course sweating like a dog.
The firework show was shit after that. I retrieved my beer.