Saturday, August 23, 2008

Bah. Humbug. Part 3

So I put on the television today and there's women's volleyball. My throat tightens. For one moment I think I'm back in gym class, and I'm half-blind because I left my glasses in my locker, and it's almost my turn to serve, and then I'll have maybe seven minutes to shower, dress, and arrive, dripping, in Spanish. (Yes, Spanish. I went to school so long ago than we all studied languages and nobody suggested it was unpatriotic.) Look, I'm still shaking.

Fortunately, there were other diversions. Like the rowing, or kayaking, or whatever it's called. Clearly a European thing, with medals for Spain, Hungary, etc., although two Chinese women won gold in one of the races. I was even more impressed by the officials, who had to bicycle along the side of the lake keeping an eye on the competitors without crashing into one another or falling in the water. This is an event by itself. After the Spaniards won their race they jumped in the lake to celebrate, and at least two boats marked RESCUE were on them within seconds. If only FEMA were this efficient.

Then the gymnastics free-style floor-exercise-with-music thing. Part ballet, part Cirque du Soleil, part baton twirling, with just a touch of Vegas showgirl about the costumes and makeup. Even the ones who dropped their tools were dazzling, although I believe all competitors in any event whatsoever anywhere should lose points if they employ "Nessun dorma." We're all just very tired of it. I especially enjoyed the lingering closeup of the Russian woman who finished out of the medals, watching her countrywoman take a bow. What's the Russian for "gut her like a sturgeon"?

"Swimming is not a sport," said the greatly-missed George Carlin. "Swimming is a way to keep from drowning." What, then, is diving? A show-offy way to get in the pool and just as promptly climb out again? An excuse to take showers in front of four billion people? Something that Africans refuse to waste their time on? For me, fifteen minutes of this stuff goes a long way, all the way to London. I'm checking out, goom-bye. So when are the marathons? Do we get to see those turbo-charged Jamaican sprinters again? Will the Chinese surpass the opening ceremony with tomorrow's closing? I hear the populations of two provinces will converge on the stadium in a re-enactment of Mao's Long March, then form a pyramid larger than the one in Giza, Egypt. In green catsuits. Singing. Could be worth a blank videotape.

NBC interrupted the fun and games to advise that Barack Obama has decided to go with Hair Plug Guy instead of Chunky Latino or Bland Hoosier or Hillary. Bah. Humbug.



Post a Comment

<< Home