Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Pole Position? Olympics 2008

Every year my Grandmother and I would watch the Olympics when they were on. Swimming, Gymnastics, Track and Field during the summer then Skating, Skiing, and in later snowboarding.

But now its the later years that somewhat drive me a little crazy.

First there is the "Dream Team" We make a basketball team that is so good, the best money can pay for, that beats every other team because we can pull NBA players to play basketball.

Then suddenly we start adding sports to Olympic games. I like Snowboarding, Diving from higher and higher platforms, tae kwon do and Karate both being added.

Fencing, AWESOME its a physically demanding sport, even freaking ping pong that I saw in Thailand looked crazy.

Then I saw Curling, Water Polo, Rhythmic Gymnastics,Archery,Badminton,and Synchronized Diving.

Even The Luuje, as in Jumping in a sled and riding down a hill of ice.

When Did this become something that was as difficult or rated on the scale of sport as a 100 meter dash, leaping off a balance beam, or swimming to beat others to the other end of the pool?

Then again, as a retired competitor of fencing, karate, and firefighting myself I can appreciate that the most medals won this year were not in fact won by anyone in sychronized diving, not in water polo and not even in badminton which I myself enjoyed in high school gym class.

They were 8 medals won in swimming. Something I was never good at, something Micheal Phelps spent hours in a pool practicing, training, and sacrificing for.

So maybe the fact that there are all these other "sports" out there for people to participate in isn't so important as long as there are committed athletes willing to take risks and train hard to try to compete in the classic events that made the Olympics worth watching again.

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