Beijing

Can you believe I haven’t blogged about the Olympics yet? What’s the matter with me? The matter is that we don’t have TV. Remember me pointing that out a few weeks ago, smugly and condescendingly? Well, I started feeling really awful that it’s the Olympics and my kids are finally old enough to care and we’re depriving them of this multicultural, yet patriotic, event. So I put Mister up to the task of getting the Olympics on at least one TV. He happens to be quite brilliant at all things electronic and TVish, and he managed to get us NBC and a few of the sister channels.

Mister and the kiddles have been avidly watching Michael Phelps who bores me for some reason. I’m really glad he’s a fast swimmer and all that, but I just don’t find his story very rousing. He eats 12,000 calories a day and that does inspire me. Because I would love to eat 12,000 calories a day. That, to me, would be motivation enough to become a great athlete.

I prefer all the oddball sports. I’ve always enjoyed fencing and York and India had fencing lessons for several months last year. They both loved it and York never once lost a match. Mister pooh-poohs it all and keeps being a complete drip about how important it is for the kids to play “socially acceptable” sports. Because if you win a gold medal, but it’s not televised, then you’re still a loser. Wacky thinking, no?

I love rhythmic gymnastics (tumbling with ribbons and balls? Sounds like something my seven-year-old daughter would invent) and synchrnonized swimming; Archery and sailing. And what’s this trampoline business? It was supposed to be on TV tonight but it got preempted due to Nastia Lukin sulking about only getting a silver medal. Competive trampoline jumping sounds fantastic.

NBC announced they would be showing coverage of all the unknown sports via internet. But due to the fact that NBC sold its soul to the Devil (you might know the Devil by his other name, Bill Gates), I cannot watch the Olympics on my Mac. I have oodles of RAM and a screaming hot connection, but poor me, my computer is three years old. No Intel processor so I’m out of luck. Mister occasionally connects his brand new Intel Mac to the TV and we can watch crusty old broadcasts of equestrian steeplechases, but it’s just not the same. There is no commentary (I never thought I would miss that silly drivel by Bob Costas, but I do), no fancy graphics. Just a bunch of people doing odd stuff and I’m left to sort it all out.

We tuned into the air gun event a few days ago. What a complete mystery! First of all, what is an air gun? I didn’t see piles of colored balls everywhere so I’m guessing they’re not the same thing as the airsoft guns that are so beloved by the teenage misfits in my neighborhood. The airgun “athletes” were wearing things like jeans and t-shirts. Not even patriotic “Team USA” t-shirts. Just clothes like they were going to run down to the 7-11 after they were done. As for the rules and competition, I could make no sense of anything. I was so uninspired by it all that I am not even interested in Googling it.

I happen to be a big fan of China and many things Chinese. (I even met Mister at the Chinese restaurant where I worked in college.) I tried to rent The Last Emperor to show my kids (don’t worry, not the entire three hours. Just a few bits and pieces.), but strangely enough no video store carries it. (Mister tried to tell me as I left the house on my quest for the DVD that I wouldn’t be able to find it. I wanted to prove that he was dead wrong. I mean it won the academy award for Best Picture in 1987! Mister got the last laugh and an “I told you so”.) So we settled for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. I just love that movie. For the kids’ sake we watched the dubbed version which was not bad at all.

I don’t know that my kids are going to be Olympic crazy like I was back in ’84. By the time I was 13 I pretty much had dedicated my life to TV. But at least I’ve given them the opportunity. I’m pretty sure I’m not raising any future Olympians. So this looks like it’s as close as they’ll get.

| Filed under Entertainment

6 thoughts on “Beijing

  1. I’m glad your able to get some Olympics viewing time in. I love the summer games. I wasn’t a fan of the Crouching Tiger movie though. I know it was a big hit, but I just didn’t get it. My niece is going to China for four months (leaving in two days) to teach English. She’s into that movie and China too. I’m excited for her–it will be an incredible experience.

  2. I’ve entirely skipped the ‘lympics this time around and I am surprised that I haven’t missed it one bit. It turns out that I might sit down and watch some swimming or gymnastics or softball, but I don’t really need to.

    I’m surprised how much Michael Phelps can slip through our TV-free, mostly radio-free, and only Sunday NYTimes existence. And he does what for the world? Swims fast?

    Color me curmudgeon.

  3. my favorite part of that post was that the air gun athletes looked like they were running down to the “sev” to pick up a six pack–who dropped the ball on that one??

    we’ve been hit and miss this time ’round–i’m more fascinated by phelps’s 12,000 calorie intake, too. (obviously.)

  4. I watched a bit of swimming. Mostly fastforwarded to the last stretch of each race just to see if there was any drama. I watched a few rounds of synchronized diving and was amazed at how well they do that. But mostly I just watch for the gymnastics. And sadly my DVR failed to tape a bunch. Grrrr…

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