When the Olympics began, I had every event taped which pretty much cut down on watching anything else. When I culled the huge number of hours I’d saved, I looked at the description of each. If the information described a sport I didn’t have much interest in, I erased it without even viewing. I mean, so many events, so little time!
Then I discovered most of the information about what was on at a specific time was wrong. I’d erased events I wanted to see because, instead of women’s soccer they were labeled badminton. Please, all you fans of badminton, I apologize for insulting your favorite sport. We used to play it all the time in our backyard but we looked nothing like those who play it on an Olympic level. However, it is not an exciting sport to watch. The only exciting part was that eight players were kicked out for cheating and did it so badly that the spectators booed them. But, due to the incorrect information, I had hours of that and little of the first soccer games.
This mislabeling turn me to a more philosophical frame of mind: the way we expect certain behavior or talents or attitudes by the way we label people. We often don’t give them a chance because of how we’ve labeled them. One of the most exciting part of the Olympics to me was watching women from countries that had never sent a woman to the Olympic compete. None of them moved up so some might say this proved nothing other than they couldn’t compete. To me, the important and exciting part was that those countries allowed them to be there. The same is true of women’s boxing. I truly have difficulty with women hitting other women, especially now that we know so much about brain damage, but if men are allowed to inflict injury on each other, don’t the athletes deserve that choice?
What’s your opinion about labeling? And what’s your favorite sport? Did you get to watch as much of it as you wanted?
If you aren’t a sports fan, please forgive my blogs about the Olympics. For those of us who love nearly anything that has running or swimming or throwing, this is like a feast with every form of chocolate spread out in front of us for two weeks.
So, because I consider myself an expert having watched at least 1000 hours of coverage, here are a few observations.
First, I LOVE the British commentators. Anything they say sounds profound or terribly witty. Two examples:
During the second half of a close soccer game, the announcer said, “The Americas would rather fancy another goal or two.”
During another soccer game when a lot of tripping and shoving had started: “It’s getting a little chippy out there.”
Next observation and a question. When the amazing American women gymnasts were performing during the team final, one of the announcers (an American not a Brit) said, “When you’re in the presence of greatness, recognize it.” I reacted negatively. Although I do admire anyone who works hard to achieve, I’m not sure only being able to fly off a vault constitutes “greatness”.
I’d really like your opinions before it starts getting a little chippy here.
I love the Olympics. All together in one place for two marvelous weeks are my favorite sports–basketball, gymnastics, swimming, diving, track—as well as some I’ve never heard of and never foresaw that I’d watch. For example, I’ve watched the finals of women’s ten-meter air rifle. The first gold medal of the games went to China. I also watched table tennis because the US had a sixteen-year-old playing.
The problem? Because there’s so much on, I have far too many decisions to make. On Saturday morning, the first full day of coverage, the US women played basketball. Fifteen minutes later, the coverage of the US women’s soccer began. I watched soccer because I can do other stuff when soccer’s on. Sorry to offend any soccer fans, but they will show the soccer goals over and over whereas basketball goes really fast.
My husband says I would win the gold medal for TiVo-ing if there were one. I’m saving every minute of every event scheduled. Last week, to warm-up for the Olympics I erased 100 previously saved programs. The disk is now 75% empty and only 34 programs are still saved. They had to be great ones to survive the cut.
Every morning and evening, I study the upcoming events and decide which ones to record and which not to. George is unhappy with me because I didn’t save the beach volleyball with Brazil playing. I figure if he wants to watch gorgeous women in bikinis rolling in the sand, he can save that himself.
Do you watch the Olympics? If so, what are your favorite events? Do you record everything?