1992: The year that flipped the switch

Twenty-five years ago today, the opening ceremony of the Summer Olympics in Barcelona was punctuated by the lighting of the Olympic torch—by bow and flaming arrow.

I did not watch it live, unfortunately. (I suppose it would have been relatively live. There was probably a short tape delay for those of us in the U.S.) However, I made up for it by watching just about everything else NBC covered in Barcelona that summer. Diving, swimming, gymnastics, boxing, track—I bet I even watched canoeing and sailing. If it was on, I watched it. (Oddly, for men’s basketball, I remember watching only the gold medal game.) I was glued to the TV for two weeks, soaking in as much of the Olympics as I could.

It was an amazing two weeks for me and I was crushed when it ended, unable to bear the thought of waiting four years for the next summer games.

Despite the fact I did not watch the opening ceremony or memorable torch lighting (I did see coverage of it later so I knew what happened), I’m commemorating the anniversary because the Summer Olympics in Barcelona were the first of many personally transformative events and experiences that took place in 1992.

For me, 1992 was the year that flipped the switch. The events that took place and the experiences I had that year made an indelible mark. It was the year I started down the path of becoming me. I turned 10 in 1992, so perhaps the year coincided with the initial stages of puberty, magnifying the importance and impact of everything that happened. That could be part of it. However, no matter how or why, the events of 1992 made me the person I am today. My taste in music, my sense of humor, my fashion sense (or perhaps nonsense), my work ethic, my insane frugality, my love of writing, my passion for sports—I can trace all of them to something that happened in 1992.

Though I don’t want to write a ton of posts covering everything that made an impact on me in 1992—because, honestly, I have not been the best at keeping series going lately—I do want to write a couple posts and touch on the major stuff. So consider this fair warning that I will be making some trips down memory lane in the coming weeks and months.

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