Friday, February 12, 2010

Help! I think I'm supposed to like the Olympics - but I don't.

I like to think that I'm similar to most red-blooded American males who like their beer cold, their steaks rare, and their cars fast.  Above these things though, I love sports.  So why would I rather watch the Yogi-Yahooeys take the gold in the Laff-A-Lympics than the real Olympics?   Heavens to mergatroid already, what's wrong with me?

Maybe I'm overestimating the interest in the Winter Games this year, but it seems like people are into it in 2010.  There are a wide variety events to watch, and the venues and facilities are generally beautiful, but I just can't get into this stuff.  Even now with the last couple Olympic games being broadcast in full HD I can't get fired up.

I think my problem is rooted in the fact that I can't get excited over Olympic athletes in general - they're boring.  Sorry Michael Phelps, Shaun White, Lindsey Vonn - you are. Usain Bolt seems exciting, 'cause he's fast, but then I realize if he was, he'd be doing something more exciting in the sprinting offseason (is there such a thing?) - like catching passes from Drew Brees or stealing bases off Yadier Molina.  The other problem?  Your sports are boring.  Running 100 meters down a straight level track?  Boring.  Running 100 yards down the gridiron, dodging 11 angry defenders. Exciting.  Throwing a javelin 250 feet?  Meh.  Gunning down a guy headed for home from deep centerfield.  Thrilling.

Plus, I'm always skeptical that we're actually seeing the worlds best "athlete" in some of these niche sports.  Some of these Olympic events are so freaking niche that it seems only a handful of people actually compete worldwide.  I'd never know if I might have a supreme talent for ski jumping or skeleton because hell if I've ever had the resources or wherewithall to try it.  I could be the one of the world's best curlers in hiding, but you'd never know.  Because I don't care. And events like figure skating and diving, where the winner is determined solely on the scores given by judges irritate me as well, since there are inherent biases (and corruption) built into each judges mind. 

I know some people claim I should just enjoy the pure love for the sport some of these Olympic athletes show, because they aren't in it for the money.  But to me it always comes down to the fact that the most of the worlds best athletes find some way to play American or International professional sports for TONS of MONEY.  Admittedly, my hypocrisy shines through on this though, when I know that I'd rather watch a D-3 college basketball game, than the Olympics, knowing full well that 99.99% of those kids will never see dime one playing professionally.

And yes, I realize there are some sports in the Olympic games that I clearly don't find boring (basketball and hockey).  But the problem is I already watch those in the context of professional sports, so I'm not really inclined to sit through more games with international players I don't know.  Really after the original Dream Team, I lost interest even there.

So - to review I don't like the Olympics because:
1) the sports are boring
2) the athletes are boring
3) the niche sports are just that
4) the sports I like already play professional seasons

This is a plea.  Straighten me out on this dislike of the Olympics.  If there is a reason I should like them tell me.  Apparently I'm not smart enough on my own to figure what that reason is.

Oh, and for the record the Scoobie-Doobies can suck it.  What a bunch of losers.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting take. I guess I'm one of those people that really likes the Olympics and I'm not sure why. It's not because I value the effort of athletes that aren't being paid for their hard work. I realize that Michael Phelps will never have to work a day in his life now.(unless he buys a ton of weed). I guess I just like the wackiness of sports I only get to see once every 4 years. I think I'm also watching the womens events hoping for some sort of wardrobe malfunction at high speed...

    On a side note, I can't believe they played that luge crash video on the nightly news. Fucking brutal.