Like a few other peeps around the world, I have been spending my evenings watching the Olympic coverage. I am not a tried and true sports fanatic. I watch some things during the year - the Superbowl, the world series, an occasional Steelers game to remind myself of my origins. But there's something about the Olympics that I love.
I will admit that some of that has to do with getting an opportunity to watch people do amazing things. And, often those unbelievable things are also incredibly dangerous. And fast. And slippery. Every now and again, those things end up in fantastic speeding crashes. The kinds of crashes were all of us simultaneously scream "OHHHH!" right when it happens. The kinds of crashes that you can tell are going to leave a mark even before you see them in slo-mo and watch their heads scraping and bouncing along the ice, or snow, or whatever. Anyone out of the room at the time knows to come running back in in time for the instant replay. Oddly, we continue to forget that we can actually rewind it ourselves thanks to the technology called - well, I don't know what's it's called. Maybe that's why I can't remember to rewind.
And before you get your panties in a twist and bring up the fact that on day one of those spectacular crashes ended not so swell for the young Georgian - and how I am not being very sympathetic. Tough story for the young buck. I really do feel sorry for his family and his country. But dangerous sports have the tendency to be - well, dangerous. And we watch them with captivation because they are perilous - - and we wonder - how do they screw up the courage to hurl themselves down a track or a slope or a rink knowing that the outcome could be so awful. And we wait. Not to see death, but to see if they will make it. But we still wait for them not to. It's what we do.
Yesterday night we watched a couple o' things that did indeed include some crashing. Men's 2 man bobsled, women's giant super G slalom downhill (or some combination that means gates, speed, ice and bent ski poles) and the fast track skating. Beyond the fabulous athleticism speckled with ass-over-tea-kettle out of control falling, bob sleds upsi-daisy with helmets grinding down the course, and skaters spilling unceremoniously into great bumpers I had a couple of other astute observations. Of course I did.
- I think Apollo Ono is a nice looking young guy. I am confused however, as to why there is a crotch camera on him while he sits prior to entering the ice for races. Those guys have Herculean thighs and colossal asses. Do we really need a close-up of either of these complete with the worn off spandex in the thigh area? I. don't. think. so. I don't care how many medals he's won if that means I get to spend the time before the race contemplating the size of Ono's full package as it relates to the size of his titanic upper legs.
- Steve Holcomb - the driver of the US bobsled team - obviously was not consulted about the team uniform. There was something disturbing about seeing a 5'10" 213 pound guy in a front zip full spandex number with capri length pants. It was spellbinding. Spellbinding in the way that you wonder how sausage is jammed in to it's casing and what happens when the ends over flow. The capri pants were a curious choice. Teenie little ankles and feet only further accentuating the bulbous planetoid above it. The best thing was getting to watch him run and then pop agilely in to the cockpit. An athlete tucked inside that 213 pounds. Very sumo like.
- The Canadian spandex "costume" fail. It dawned on me that the uniform designer has some unresolved issues with the original version of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Sure, they're in red. Sure they're taller than your average Ooompa Loompa. And yet, check out the similarities. They're just ooompa loompas in higher tech fabric. How embarrassing for them.