August 17, 2004

Random Olympic Thoughts

-For those who think the Equestrian events are dull (and when talking about Dressage, they’re right) you should check out the second portion of three-day eventing. It’s the Cross Country ride, which is an obstacle course for horses. Far more enjoyable than Dressage, but having all the horses go at once like a NASCAR race might be even more exciting.

-One of the Frinklin household’s favorite Olympic play at home games is Gay/Not Gay. Quite simple really, just take the more stereotypical sports like men’s gymnastics or women’s softball and guess away! Remember to pay special attention to how your subject celebrates success and/or commiserates failure.

-I’ve been watching these games, and I’m struck at how advanced conditioning has become. I look at athletes such as the male gymnasts or the women’s beach volleyball players, and then look at the Mrs. Frinklin and myself and wonder if we are even in the same species anymore. When I say this I’m thinking of American gymnast Jason Gatson and his He-Man arms or volleyballer Kerri Walsh’s inhumanly flat stomach.

-I find myself rooting more and more for former Communist block countries. It used to be that I rooted against them, because they were Communist, and with every victory for Communism a thousand kittens die. It’s hard to root against them now, especially when you see things like Svetlana Khorkina and her coach basically keeping the Russian gymnastics program going. Is it just me and the Mrs, or does Svetlana look like the saddest woman alive?

-If anyone doubted the number of empty seats we've been seeing on the telecasts, just know this: according to the LA Times this morning, only 3 million of a possible 5.5 million event tickets were sold. And what is this about Greece being on holiday the entire month of August? If no one has to work, why the hell aren't they at the games?

Posted by Frinklin at August 17, 2004 03:26 PM

We had hours - and I mean H-O-U-R-S - of the Cross-Country yesterday. Yes, it's better than Dressage and gymnastics, but still after the third hour (I only watched about 20 minutes) it gets a little tedious.

I don't believe that they've sold 3m of the 5.5m tickets. If they did, then attendance will be way up in week 2 because much of what I've seen has been about 25-50% full. Did you see any vast crowd at the cross-country? NO. Rowing - no. There were 500 people watching Venus Williams yesterday. She probably gets a bigger crowd for that when she throws a dinner party.

Posted by: John at August 18, 2004 12:06 AM
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