Now that I am a Dad, I like to encourage my kids to watch with me. They are intrigued, but not nearly as much as they are watching the X-games. Somehow flying hundred of feet in the air on a motorcycle with no hands is much more cool to watch than the Olympic balance beam. So with Lisa working this weekend I have been watching a good deal of the Olympics on my own. Like a lot of sports fans, this is my first exposure to current gymnastics, swimming, beach volleyball and badminton competition in four years.
So you can imagine my surprise when the Chinese women's gymnastics team took to the floor. I thought it was cute that the Chinese had their own set of dwarf children cheerleaders. I kept waiting for the REAL athletes to come out until I realized that the 5 year old kids WERE the Olympic team. According to official Olympic rules all of these girls will be 16 years old this year. Well, NONE of these girls looks 16 years old and the fact that the team was breast feeding during the rotations made me suspicious. There is no WAY that these girls are 16 years old! Would you trust any of them to drive a car? Still, whether they are 6 or 16 they all perform like little bottle rockets and I am amazed at what these athletes can do. I hope we wipe the floor with them anyway.
I was walking by the TV set tonight and saw what I thought was a mistake on tv. Two people diving at the same time. I guess it's called synchronized diving and yes, it's an Olympic event. It's one of the most absurd things I have seen in a long time and I am stunned that NBC would cover it over the boxing matches that were running at the same time. If they were going to give a synchronized medal for anything, they should give it to the 15,000 Chinese performers who entertained the World during the opening ceremonies. Now that was synchronization! AWESOME.
So I don't understand the whole synchronized ANYTHING event. To me it cheapens the medals that other people train for in real athletic contests like ping pong. If they are going to give medals for synchronized diving and swimming they should give medals for roshambo (rock, paper, scissors) and thumb wrestling. I'm actually pretty good at roshambo. On the count of TWO I like to flash "paper" to my opponent and then hit them with a rock on THREE. It totally throws off their timing. It takes a trained athlete like myself to perfect the sport of roshambo and the concentration level is just too far to reach for most people. I'm definitely Olympic material, look for me in a white leisure suite at the 2012 Olympics in England. I'll be the one eating cupcakes during the assembly of Nations.
So enjoy the Olympics this year friends and family. And if your two year old happens to wander out of the house, look for them in China. They are probably training for their gymnastics team.