(Image taken from the Wikipedia website)
For the last two weeks I have been glued to the TV every night as I have watched the world's athletes compete in sports that I didn't know existed prior to February 12th (opening night of the 2010 Olympics). Peter was happy to see Sunday night roll around because he was tired of staying up later than usual so his pathetic wife can “find out what this ‘hurricane move’ is that they keep talking about”. :-)
I’ve never been the outdoorsy type. My idea of fun in the snow is more along the lines of a snowman building competition that’s over in fifteen minutes or less. However, I have been sucked in by the skiing events in this winter Olympics. Nordic Combined? Oh my word…my legs hurt just watching them ski! The Biathlon? I can’t imagine hitting those targets if I had been sitting there for five minutes trying to aim, much less having just skied a lap of cross-country and with my competition breathing down my neck as they shoot and move on.
And then there are all the Freestyle Skiing events – Aerials (craziness!), Moguls, and Ski Cross. As I sat on my couch sipping hot tea and eating a diet friendly snack, I congratulated myself on my total lack of athletic ability. While they were out there freezing and crashing and making orthopedic surgeons around the world rub their hands in glee at the thought of all those future knee replacements, I was taking a healthy stroll on my treadmill in my warm house and if the pace or incline was too much, I could adjust it with the push of a button. Oh yes, my index finger is in great shape these days!
Although there have been a lot of great Olympic moments, I’ve picked three highlights to share with you (in case you missed it). If you click on the links, it will take you to the video about the particular event.
Number one was Sean White’s Half-Pipe run – again, something I knew nothing about, but was totally impressed! Number two was the bronze medal win for Canadian figure skater Joannie Rochette who lost her mom unexpectedly to a heart attack on Sunday. I was really happy that she competed and won a medal. And last but not least are the two Americans who won gold and silver in the Nordic Combined event. After a long drought in Nordic Combined for the U.S. team, this year has been a great triumph for them and that’s always fun to see. I like it when people who usually don’t win (or who come out of nowhere to win) take home a medal.
I also have to give some big honorable mentions to the four-man bobsled team from the USA who won gold in the event for the first time in 62 years! I was so excited for those guys and ended up yelling in my basement when they won...funny how quickly you can get sucked in. ;-) There are two other guys that need to be mentioned - both because I appreciate their talents, and also because of their great attitudes and grace under fire. The first is eight-time Olympic medalist Apolo Ohno - not only can he skate, but he can apparently jump over the spills that happen around him! :-) He's also good at giving his opinion but respecting the call, even when he disagrees with it. Great example in this day when we see far too many athletes cussing out refs and throwing temper tantrums on the sports field. And the second guy that needs to be mentioned is the gold medal winner from the Men's Figure Skating competition, Evan Lysacek. When comments were made and the press tried to get him to respond and cause issues, he answered calmly and with great respect for his competition. He also jumps and lands those jumps so smoothly that it looks easy - he's really fun to watch.
And so ends another winter Olympics. Though Peter complained a bit about the late nights, he was usually right there watching it with me. :-) I told him that he has two years of early-to-bed nights until the summer Olympics comes, and then we'll be watching all the diving and swimming and track and field stuff. :-) So what about you? Did you watch the Olympics? What was your favorite event or moment of the games?