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At the ancient Greek site Delphi, you'll find a stone altar, three feet tall, bearing a carving of the iconic Olympic rings.

Seeing this carving, it's easy to imagine it being chiseled into the stone by the very first Olympic champions — runners, wrestlers, and chariot racers — almost 3,000 years ago.

After all, the stone looks like you could trace it back to that time when the "games" were vicious battles played by athletes who offered sacrifices to the gods and feasted at ancient Olympic festivals.


And you wouldn't be the first to think that this stone was ancient.

[rebelmouse-image 19469899 dam="1" original_size="1280x720" caption="Olympic ruins in Delphi. Image via yvanox/Pixabay." expand=1]Olympic ruins in Delphi. Image via yvanox/Pixabay.

American authors Lynn and Gray Poole visited Delphi in the late 1950s, and they thought the stone was an ancient relic, too. They even said so in their book, "History of the Ancient Olympic Games."

And before long, their story carried over to other publications, and it became accepted as fact that this stone in Delphi was the first, 3,000-year-old engraving of the iconic Olympic rings.

It's a great story, but here's the thing – it's not true.

The Olympic symbol we all recognize today was actually invented relatively recently by Pierre de Coubertin in 1913. Coubertin was president of the International Olympic Committee, co-founder of the modern Olympic Games, and a French aristocrat who loved boxing, fencing, and rowing.

Just the year before, the Summer Olympic Games had been held in Stockholm, and for the first time ever, athletes competed from all five inhabited parts of the world.

This inspired Coubertin to hand-draw the rings symbol as interlocked circles in five different colors (blue, yellow, black, green, and red). He created the design for the celebration of the International Olympic Committee's 20th anniversary in 1914.

[rebelmouse-image 19469901 dam="1" original_size="2327x3284" caption="Baron Pierre de Coubertin. Image via George Grantham Bain Collection/Library of Congress/Wikimedia Commons." expand=1]Baron Pierre de Coubertin. Image via George Grantham Bain Collection/Library of Congress/Wikimedia Commons.

"These five rings represent the five parts of the world now won over to Olympism and ready to accept its fertile rivalries," Coubertin wrote in the August 1913 Olympic Review. "Moreover, the six colours thus combined reproduce those of all the nations without exception."

In other words, no single ring represented a specific country, but the symbol as a whole on a white background included colors from all of the world's nations.

Coubertin had quite the reason to celebrate with the rings. By then, the IOC had successfully organized five Games — the first events of our modern Olympics.

Reviving the Games had also been Coubertin's idea. He idolized the ancient Greeks as athletes and as warriors, so it makes sense that the Olympics reflect their traditions at every step.

Coubertin's passion also explains why he would want to highlight those first five events. Some people supported him when he first introduced the idea of the modern Olympics, but nobody expected such explosive success.

[rebelmouse-image 19469902 dam="1" original_size="1153x674" caption="Opening ceremony of the 1912 Olympic Games. Image via "The Olympic Games of Stockholm 1912 Official Report"/Wikimedia Commons." expand=1]Opening ceremony of the 1912 Olympic Games. Image via "The Olympic Games of Stockholm 1912 Official Report"/Wikimedia Commons.

That's why, as historian David Young says, it’s likely that Coubertin chose five rings to represent the first five Games.

And after the 1916 Summer Games in Berlin, Coubertin had hoped to add a sixth ring to the symbol, and many more after that, to honor each host country. He apparently envisioned eventually having a flag full of vibrant rings, reflecting a global array of nations.

But World War I thwarted Coubertin's plans to add more rings. In fact, it shut down the next Olympic Games altogether.

The rings' peaceful sentiment from pre-World War I Europe was gone. It was a whole new world — and one at war. Because of the fighting, the 1916 Games were canceled, and Coubertin's rings would have to wait to be presented to the world.

The war ended in 1918. But even for people in victorious countries like France and the United States, times were still tough. Survivors of the war were cynical, aimless, and traumatized. Gertrude Stein even named them The Lost Generation for that reason.

In that post-war climate, it must have been quite a task to reconvene the Games — no cynic would be interested in unity after different countries had just tried to annihilate each other. Even the IOC's basic task of identifying the participating countries was complicated, to say the least. The war had led to the establishment of new nations, like Czechoslovakia. And some of the previously participating nations, like Germany and and Austria, were banned after losing the war.

But finally, at the 1920 Olympics in Belgium, the Olympic rings made their debut, appearing on a white flag.

[rebelmouse-image 19469903 dam="1" original_size="1024x683" caption="The Olympic flag flies in British Columbia in 2012. Image via Scazon/Flickr." expand=1]The Olympic flag flies in British Columbia in 2012. Image via Scazon/Flickr.

To address the hopelessness in the air, Coubertin adjusted his plans. Instead of a ring for each host country, he decided to keep the five rings, with each representing the "five continents" that come together for the Olympic Games.

His definition of "continent" is now a little outdated — he was referring to Africa, Asia, America, Australia, and Europe. But that message of unity resonated at the time, and it has continued to resonate throughout the years.

In fact, Coubertin's logo became so prevalent that it showed up on a certain stone in Delphi, Greece.

Yep, that famous stone carving was actually created in 1936 — not in ancient Greek times. It was made as a movie prop for a torchbearers' ceremony and left behind after the year's Summer Olympic Games in Berlin.

Still, while that movie prop might have skewed the real story of the rings, it helped popularize the Olympic rings as a symbol of worldwide unity.

[rebelmouse-image 19469904 dam="1" original_size="970x666" caption="Image via Atos International/Wikimedia Commons." expand=1]Image via Atos International/Wikimedia Commons.

And fortunately, the true meaning behind the rings has remained. Today, the official Olympic charter reads, "The Olympic symbol expresses the activity of the Olympic Movement and represents the union of the five continents and the meeting of athletes from throughout the world at the Olympic Games."

Team USA's relationship with the Olympic rings symbol has spoken to worldwide unity from the very beginning.At those 1920 Olympics when the rings debuted, the United States flag bearer was Ireland-born track and field athlete Pat McDonald — the U.S.'s first foreign-born representative.

Celebrating global unity might have seemed like an impossible task after an event as dire as a world war, but Coubertin's work inspired people to do just that.

With one man's passion as the seed, a logo bloomed into more than just a logo. Now, the Olympic rings adorn a flag to signal a time for peace, for sportsmanship, and for breaking barriers between us by recognizing what unites us.

At the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Games, the rings will appear on Team USA's new heated parkas as we once again witness nations gathering from around the world.

It's no wonder that this symbol continues to bring us together. The Olympic rings have always carried hope for a more harmonious world, and they'll continue to do so in our future.

Images provided by Pacifico

Making waves in the best way

True

At last, summer is here. And for many people, that means it's time for heading to the beach and maybe even catching some waves. Surfing is a quintessential summertime activity for those who live in coastal communities—it’s not only really fun and challenging, it’s also a great way to celebrate Mother Nature’s beauty. Even after a wipeout, the cool water mixed with warm sunshine offers a certain kind of euphoria. Or, you know, just hanging back on the sand is plenty fun too. Simply being outdoors near the ocean is its own reward.

pacifico quiksilver beach cleanupLet’s protect the places where outdoor adventure happensAll photos provided by Pacifico

However, it's well known that our beautiful beaches are suffering the consequences of overcrowding, pollution and littering. What was once a way of playing in nature is now slowly destroying it. And of course, this affects beachgoers everywhere. The sad truth is—without taking action to preserve all the natural joys the earth provides, we will eventually lose them.

But there is hope. Two popular brands that both have roots in surf culture have teamed up to help make trips to the beach a more sustainable pastime. The best part? You don’t have to know how to hang ten in order to participate.

Pacifico®, a pilsner-style lager originally brought to the U.S. by surfers, and Quiksilver, an iconic apparel company loved by both surfers and beach goers alike, have created a brand-new range of clothing and accessories with sustainability in mind.

Take a look below. These threads are great for all kinds of fun in the sun, without compromising the environment.

pacifico quicksilver beach cleanupsReady to make some waves

The collection launches on July 5 and includes tees and woven shirts, boardshorts, hats, flip-flops and a special beach towel and tote bag. The unique collaboration features the vibrant, colorful designs that are the hallmark of Quiksilver combined with Pacifico elements, created to make a positive impact.

Each item has been thoughtfully curated to minimize an environmental footprint and protect the outdoors. The hats, for example, are made from NetPlus® by Bureo®, a raw material created from South American recycled fishing nets. Additionally, the board shorts are made from recycled plastic bottles, and tees are made with 100% organic cotton. Pretty rad stuff, to put it in surfer lingo.

The prices on these pieces are equally rad, ranging from $28 flip-flops to $60 boardshorts.

In keeping with the sustainable ethos and protecting the places we play, Pacifico and Quiksilver will celebrate the products’ launch by hosting two beach cleanups. The first is on July 5 at Sunset Point in Malibu, California, from 4-5:30pm, and the second is on July 9th at Deerfield Beach in Florida from 8:30 – 10:30am.

pacifico quicksilver clothing lineCleaning up and looking good while doing it

Theses beach cleanups are open to anyone over the age of 21 who’s ready to have some fun while taking care of nature’s playground.

Those who can’t make it to the beach (bummer, dude) don’t have to miss out on all the fun. The new collection will be available on July 5th at www.quiksilver.com/mens-collab-pacifico. And even if you don’t surf, never plan to surf, have no desire to even be near a surfboard, rest assured, the apparel is still cool. Plus sustainable choices are always good fashion.

Our planet provides us with an endless supply of beauty and adventure. But without more mindful actions from humanity, its natural wonders will eventually diminish. Fortunately Pacifico and Quiksilver are making it easier than ever for people to enjoy the great outdoors without jeopardizing it. That’s a wave worth riding.

This article originally appeared on 09.06.17


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The study, conducted by sociologists at Ohio State, was recently published in the journal Social Forces.

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Poor Brody was only able to get four signatures in his yearbook, two from what appeared to be teachers and one from himself that said, “Hope you make some more friends."

Brody’s mom, Cassandra Ridder has been devastated by the bullying her son has faced over the past two years. "There [are] kids that have pushed him and called him names," she told The Washington Post. It has to be terrible to have your child be bullied and there is nothing you can do.

She posted about the incident on Facebook.

“My poor son. Doesn’t seem like it’s getting any better. 2 teachers and a total of 2 students wrote in his yearbook,” she posted on Facebook. “Despite Brody asking all kinds of kids to sign it. So Brody took it upon himself to write to himself. My heart is shattered. Teach your kids kindness.”

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