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Olympic Thoughts

Here at the cottage, we have but two goals. Write stuff. Watch the Olympics.

This is our story.

Writing/Olympics Retreat: DAY TWO

We have a strong contender for the most ridiculous quote of the Olympics. From one of the NBC commentators at the Showjumping ring: “We have to remember that horses are only human. Or ... er, equine.”


We name this day the day of injury. A Canadian runner injured himself in the 400 m trials. A Chinese hurdler was out before the first heat. A Canadian woman was in a crash in the triathlon and broke her arm.

Wary of this trend, I shall take extra care this evening. I eat pie with caution. I use an extra pillow, lest I strain my neck against the couch’s arm rest.

2:01 AM

The Polish volleyball teams continue to fail us. For the second night we have stayed awake cheering valiantly for a team in red and white -- first the Polish women’s team against the US, and now the Polish men’s team against Russia -- and again they are losing. Barely, but consistently, they are losing.

If only they were a little better, we could cheer enough to keep ourselves conscious. If only they were a little worse, we could go to bed, resigned to their slaughter.

I don’t even like volleyball.

2:10 AM

Track and field race repeats. A classic bait and switch: a promise of gymnastics finals with all the outrageous flipping and tumbling that entails, only to return to the damn track. And now more volleyball.

Give me gymnastics or give me sleep!

3:something AM

The Polish team actually won. We stir ourselves from our stupor to raise a halfhearted cheer.

Then: damn. Only gymnastic highlights. It is sadly anticlimactic.

Writing/Olympics Retreat: DAY THREE

6:49 PM

1,179 words and counting. Having passed the required 1,000 word mark for today, this means that I’m once again allowed to watch Olympics this evening.

In other news, we have found a wireless network that sometimes works when I stand behind the cottage on a lawn chair, so maybe I can perhaps sometime post this and get my email and tell a certain three male writers of my acquaintance that I am kicking their collective asses and am not, in fact, a douchebag.

11:02 PM

Men’s triathlon! So far, no broken arms. Also, no one breaking away from the main pack. Someone needs to get a move on, lest I yell at CBC to return to the diving.

I am in the final leg of my own triathlon: 20 minutes of eating nachos and guacamole, followed by washing dishes, followed by an evening-long haul of watching Olympic coverage. I’ve been training for months, and have shown marked improvement in my ability to ingest large amounts of guacamole.

11:21 PM

Important lessons learned so far:

1. I really miss swimming -- real swimming. I miss the feel of that sort of strength in my shoulders, that effortless glide through the water.
2. I’d like a silver bathing suit, because, really. Silver.
3. I’d also like a pair of gold running shoes. Perhaps I’d hate running a little less if my shoes were gold.

Ruth agrees on the shoes. Really, who wouldn’t? (Crazy people, that’s who.)

Also: those two guys in the lead in the triathlon? Yeah, so going to get caught. I give them five minutes.

11:45 PM

Simon Whitfield! Move your ass, man! Being fourth is the worst. Come on, come on. ... Oh my god! He’s actually doing it. Goooo, Simon! Get past them! Goooo!!!

(There is cheering here, and clapping of hands, and some yelling. Simon Whitfield wins a silver medal. Soon, we will win ourselves some snacks.)

1:38 AM

Volleyball. Everywhere I turn, there is volleyball. We debate the benefits of beach volleyball versus normal volleyball, agreeing that we would play neither.

Our sports are clear: long-distance pie eating. Hesitant novel writing. The neighbourhood search for a wireless signal.


( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 19th, 2008 04:53 pm (UTC)
Equine. Wow. Sums up lame commentary perfectly.

On the equine note: Yay Ian Millar! Huzzah!
Aug. 19th, 2008 04:55 pm (UTC)
Aww you missed the horse jumping yesterday.

I've left CBC running in the background most mornings, but yesterday was the first time all the kids were glued to the tv the moment the horses came on.

They'd never seen horse jumping and thought it was amazing. After it was over they set up the straws (nifty building set) into jumps and had the dinosaurs (apparently my horses are too small for jumping) have their own jumping competition.

Outside they pretended to be hurdlers and sprinters.


It's a great built in theme because we've also discussed things such as different countries, where they are located around the world/on the map and why people look different/the same from different countries and why some people wear different clothes.

Yay Multiculturalism!
Yay Olympics !

Yay for your writing too!
Aug. 19th, 2008 05:23 pm (UTC)
I wsa out in time to see the jump-off. So very cool to have Canada win a silver!!
Aug. 19th, 2008 06:44 pm (UTC)
Next Olympics, I am coming to visit you. So much awesome and NBC's website fails to help me find it!
Aug. 25th, 2008 09:57 pm (UTC)
You'd be welcome! It's a grueling schedule, watching all Olympics, all the time (on three, sometimes four, stations), but I'm sure you'd be up to the task. *g*
Aug. 19th, 2008 10:53 pm (UTC)
Triathlocommute. That is my sport today. :p
Aug. 19th, 2008 11:57 pm (UTC)
Beach volleyball is way more interesting to follow than indoor volleyball. My attention span doesn't deal well with 9(?) people per side.

And thanks for the idea, I am SO cheering for the red-and-white teams from now on. (Order of priority is Canada-USA-China, which is the reverse order of dominance. Sigh.)
Aug. 23rd, 2008 04:18 pm (UTC)
Hee, this is exactly how I watch the Olympics. I'm sad right now because I have no internet or television. (I've missed five whole days of coverage!!)

When there isn't anyone in silver or black (and no one else seems to wear those colours) I try to cheer for small countries whose geographical location I am not entirely sure about.
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )