Saturday, August 21, 2004

Watching the Olympics

I have always been an avid Olympics fan. I remember watching as an 8 year old, believing that some day I would be there doing the hop, skip and jump (now the triple jump). I have been in front of my television more in the last week than any time in, oh the last four years since the Sydney Olympics. Since it is an effort to get myself to the gym 3 times a week I think it is unlikely I will be showing up on the US track team (is their a senior category at the gay games? If I start now will I be in shape now for lesbian pairs synchronized diving by the time I am 70? Can I learn how to swim that fast? And if not, do they allow divers to wear personal flotation devices?) Any way, in lieu of participation, here are observations, mind wanderings and cranky middle-aged commentary:

Beach volleyball. Is this really an Olympic sport? Is it good to encourage children to aspire to being covered in sweat and sand while courting skin cancer? It feels so self absorbed compared to team volleyball. With the sports bikinis, beach rock music, designer sunglasses, it feels like I'm watching beach blanket v-ball.

Speaking of odd sports -- synchronized diving. Since they have done away with analogies on the SAT, here is one that will not cause scandal to young minds. Gay men are to synchronized diving as lesbians are to white water kayaking.

Did you see the women shot putters? Eight pounds of steel hurled 69 meters. Oh to be young and reallly, really butch.

I was gratified to watch the US men's basketball team lose to Puerto Rico. I missed the second half of the Lithuania game but was ecstatic to hear they had defeated the US. At the same time I find it quite pleasing that the US women's softball and basketball teams are nursing such long win streaks (softball -about 72, basketball about 36). Skill and team work seem to be more important values to the wome then the men. Is that an understatement.

My favorite sport is track and field. I love to watch the long jump and the triple jump, the decathlon and the pole vault. I was somewhat disheartened by the Balco doping scandal and saddened that Marian Jones has had to spend so much energy avoiding a suspension rather than focusing on qualifying in the 100 & 200 meter races.

Remember, if you see something offensive, like crotch shots of the women's beach volleyball players, email nbc at

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