Spicing Up The Games

We only get steady coverage of Olympic sports once every four years.  Because of this, I have little ability to understand or appreciate some of the events that I’m unfamiliar with, like say Handball or Badminton.  As the summer games enter their second week, Gymnastics and Swimming give way to some of the second-tier events that are supposed to tide us over until the Sprinting begins.

This means that we’re getting to the point in the Olympic Games where the events are becoming more difficult to watch.  This isn’t because the coverage is bad, or because the athletes aren’t very good, it’s just that there are some events that are so disconnected from any reality that it can be difficult to understand what is happening on the screen… and why?

Take the Triple Jump for instance.  Was there a time in history when sequential jumping was an everyday necessity? Stringing three successive, yet different, jumps together is actually something more common in a Super Mario game isn’t it?  And how did we determine that three jumps was better than two and that four were too many?  Why not just let the person continue jump after jump until they can’t jump anymore?  I say that the person who gets the furthest around the track gets the gold.

I understand that there was a time when throwing a javelin was essential to human survival, but hasn’t hitting something with said  javelin always been the historical point of javelin throwing? How come there aren’t any targets?  It also doesn’t help the uneducated viewer that the officials don’t leave the previous javelin stuck into the ground to that you can see who’s has gone the furthest.  How about spicing the javelin event up by having it become about accuracy instead of distance.  I’m not saying that we put people innocent people in danger, but can’t we at least skewer some innocent watermelons?

To make these middle-weeks of the games more interesting than ever, here are 13 more ideas that I respectfully submit to the International Olympic Committee:

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It Isn’t Always Beautiful

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Tonight the London Olympics officially open… and someone has already been disqualified from competition.

Triple Jumper Voula Papachristou was politely asked to return to her native Greece after making disparaging comments about Africans.

She tweeted that, “With all of the Africans in Greece at least the West Nile Mosquitos will eat homemade food.”

Every 4 years we are treated to the beauty and pageantry of the Opening Ceremonies, a celebration of nations and world heritage. The beauty and promise of the world’s youth are spotlighted against the backdrop of hope.

The display of unity and solidarity among peaceful, yet different, nations is always one of the most stirring aspects of the games.

This doesn’t mean that things can’t get heated a few days into the competition though.

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Making It Personal

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Sometimes you look at a document and recognize that even though the words are English, the language doesn’t make any sense.

If you’ve ever graded freshman composition essays or been served legal papers you know exactly what I’m talking about.

I’ve been served with official documents twice in my life and both times I’ve found myself especially grateful for lawyers and equally frustrated by them- Frustrated by the legal team pursuing my wallet and grateful for the lawyer who was looking out for me.

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