LONDON — Around the 2012 Olympics and its host city with journalists from The Associated Press bringing the flavor and details of the games to you:


Happy 35th Birthday, Misty May-Treanor. Don't celebrate too much, you've got an Olympic beach volleyball match against the Czech Republic at 11 p.m.

The international governing body tells us that there are six athletes in the beach volleyball competition who will celebrate birthdays during the tournament. Fellow American Jennifer Kessy turns 31 on Tuesday, when she'll play the Netherlands.

Also celebrating birthdays in the sand: Janis Smedins of Latvia (25), Paolo Nicolai of Italy (24), Stefanie Schwaiger of Austria (26) and Louise Bawden of Australia (31).

— Jimmy Golen — Twitter:


A large portion of Monday's daily Olympic organizing committee briefing was spent discussing one subject: tickets.

London organizers have gone to international federations to reclaim unused tickets, which have become a bit of an embarrassment because of swaths of empty seats at several venues through the first few days.

The reclaimed tickets will be sold daily on Ticketmaster — but to Britain residents only.

"We've said from the beginning anything available will go to the British public, and that's what we'll continue to do," said London organizing committee Jackie Brock-Doyle. "Clearly the demand is there, and we don't need to worry about them not being sold. We sold 3,000 tickets overnight."

Organizers also had to open a dedicated will-call window in the athletes village because of long lines that apparently caused some parents to miss their children's swimming events on Sunday.

Organizers say that with more than 10,000 athletes to serve and the "enormous demand" for tickets, they are making adjustments as issues arise.

— Jenna Fryer — Twitter


The London Organizing Committee saw no humor in a lost set of keys that required a change of locks at Wembley Stadium.

The set of keys were misplaced before the games began, and Scotland Yard has acknowledged it is to blame.

Asked during Monday's daily briefing what had happened, LOCOG spokeswoman Jackie Brock-Doyle gave few details.

"We changed the locks," was all she offered during he formal portion of the briefing.

Asked for more information, Brock-Doyle was curt. "They got lost. I don't know. The police lost them," she snapped, then rolled her eyes. "The locks were changed. I don't know what more you'd like me to say."

— Jenna Fryer — Twitter


Volunteers at the O2 Arena are practicing for the medal ceremony for tonight's men's gymnastics team final, and their pick for the gold was — no surprise — Britain. The U.S. men were "silver medalists," with Russia getting the "bronze." Who will really go home with the hardware? Tune in in a few hours.

— Nancy Armour — Twitter:


The early returns are in. Britain's biggest winner from the London Games may not be an athlete, but the city's mop-haired, brilliantly bumbling mayor, Boris Johnson.

Long seen in some Conservative Party quarters as a badly concealed oddball, Johnson's political star is soaring amid the Olympic limelight. His loose-cannon loquaciousness is popping up everywhere as he offers self-deprecating jokes alongside bikini-clad volleyballers and at Queen Elizabeth's side as she tours Olympic venues.

His unique mix of qualities — simultaneously posh and unpolished, capable of mind-boggling erudition one moment and the most crowd-pleasing barb the next — seems to be touching a popular nerve.

The right-wing Mail on Sunday is lauding Johnson as the ultimate political exemplar of "a nation unafraid to take risks or laugh at itself." The left-wing Independent sees "the beginnings of a Churchillian stature" in Johnson and credits him with "the size of personality that is waiting for a crisis that will summon him to greatness."

And the Independent even carried a poll Monday among Conservative members identifying Boris as the party's most attractive successor to the incumbent prime minister, David Cameron.

— Shawn Pogatchnik — Twitter


After 200 years, it seemed just about time for a fresh hat for Admiral Nelson, the hero honored in Trafalgar Square.

Nelson's column, one of London's most famous landmarks, received new headgear on Monday, with a snappy bicorn made by the same company that designed hats for the admiral lo those many years ago. Lock & Co, the oldest hatter in London, decorated the hat in a Union flag and adorned it with an Olympic torch.

Nelson led Britain to victory over the combined fleets of France and Spain in the Battle of Trafalgar, but was mortally wounded in the confrontation that secured Britain's naval supremacy in 1805.

One wonders what Nelson would think of this one. Certainly more colorful this time around.

— Danica Kirka —


Tunisia may have missed out on its first medal at the London Olympics because of bad math. Weightlifter Khalil El-Maoui was in second place of the men's 56-kilogram competition after the snatch but never showed up on the platform for the second lift, the clean and jerk.

Afterward, he blamed his coach for submitting an entry weight that was 10 kilograms too high.

"It was a mistake," El-Maoui says. "I should have started lifting at 148 kilograms but my coach entered 158 kilograms by mistake."

— Karl Ritter — Twitter:


The London organizing committee spoke Sunday with International Federations about empty seats at venues, and they've reclaimed tickets that do not plan to be used.

Jackie Brock Doyle says about 3,000 tickets were given back to London organizers on Sunday night for Monday's events and promptly sold out. About 600 of those were for Monday's gymnastics session.

Brock Doyle says organizers will continue to reclaim tickets from federations each day to resell to the public.

"Everybody is giving up what they can," she says. "we are trying everything we can to make sure those accredited seats are filled."

— Jenna Fryer — Twitter


New Zealand's hopes of qualifying for the final of the women's quadruple sculls at the Olympic rowing regatta were dashed when the oar of one of its crew broke with around 400 meters remaining in the repechage race.

The Kiwis were third at the time — with four boats going through — when Fiona Bourke was left stranded on Dorney Lake. They finished last, 30 seconds behind winner Australia.

Bourke looked distraught as her boat crawled past the finishing line.

New Zealand was bronze medalist at last year's world championship.

— Steve Douglas — Twitter


"We have no army in Iceland, so it's with handball we fight for the recognition." — Gudmundur Gudmundsson, the coach of Iceland's handball team, after Iceland beat Argentina 31-25 in the Olympic opener on Sunday.

— Barbara Surk — Twitter


Andy Roddick's tennis match against Slovakia's Martin Klizan was postponed due to rain on Sunday. It may just be prolonging the inevitable.

Roddick and Klizan are scheduled to play on Monday, with the winner getting a date against Novak Djokovic in the next round. Djokovic overcame a 3½-hour rain delay on Sunday to defeat Fabio Fognini of Italy.

It was the Serbian's first match since falling to Roger Federer in the Wimbledon semifinals.

The Olympics are played at Wimbledon as well, which keeps the players away from the hustle and bustle of the athletes' village in London.

"It's really an honor and a privilege to be part of the Olympic Games," Djokovic says, "although we would wish to be part of the Olympic Village and feel that atmosphere beside the best athletes in the world."

— Steven Wine — Twitter


Frankie Fredericks has served as chairman of the athlete's commission leading up to the London games. The man who ended Michael Johnson's 21-race winning streak in the 200 meters with a win at the Bislett Games in Norway in 1996 is preparing to give way to German fencer Claudia Bokel.

"It's been a very emotional journey for me," Fredericks says. "I've seen this baby grow over the last seven years and to see what we have today is special."

— Jon Krawczynski — Twitter


Kerri Walsh Jennings and Misty May-Treanor are having to work the night shift in pursuit of a third gold medal. The reigning Olympic champions in beach volleyball hit the sand at Horse Guards Parade at 11 p.m. Monday night to face the Czech team of Kristyna Kolocova and Marketa Slukova.

It's the second straight match to open the Olympics that Walsh and Treanor have played at 11 p.m. It's forced an adjustment in the body clock for Walsh Jennings, who is used to getting up at the crack of dawn with her two children.

"I was worried," Walsh Jennings said after winning her opener against Australia. "At home, it hits 11 and I'm a zombie. But we could play at 4 in the morning, we don't care."

— Janie McCauley — Twitter


There were few signs of commuting trouble early Monday in Olympic-saturated London, with rail lines operating properly and some highways having lighter traffic than expected. There were some tie-ups, but those are expected on a Monday rush hour. People attending Olympic events mingled easily with commuters on the Overground line to Stratford, though seats filled up more quickly than usual.

— Gregory Katz — Twitter


It was more Usain Bolt then Haile Gebrselassie.

Predicted commuting chaos as London attempted to juggle a regular business day and the strain of hosting the Olympics didn't materialize early Monday morning — at least not along the capital's cycle lanes.

A regular ride from north London to the Houses of Parliament — a small spike from the Olympic beach volleyball courts — took a zippy 20 minutes, almost 5 minutes less than during a usual Monday morning.

While a major route that links London to the country's M1 highway had typically thick traffic, many other roads appeared far quieter, with schools closed for summer holidays and many businesses advising staff to work from home.

Along a cycle path in Hyde Park, bicycle commuters negotiated new obstacles — barriers and bright pink banners put in place for Olympic visitors, but raced along several roads in central London which have been temporarily cleared of car traffic.

— David Stringer - Twitter

EDITOR'S NOTE — "Eyes on London" shows you the Olympics through the eyes of Associated Press journalists across the 2012 Olympic city and around the world. Follow them on Twitter where available with the handles listed after each item, and get even more AP updates from the games here: