“Boo!” to That Puffed Up “Count” and His Crazy Olympics

misty.pngTo all of you who watched archery, beach volleyball, bicycle moto-cross, synchronized swimming, water polo and the other fringe sports during these crazy Olympics, I have a question: Why?

What do you know or care about these sports? Granted, Misty May-Treanor (photo at right) looks great in a bikini, but do you really know the finer points of “setting and spiking the ball”? Do you care?

20bolt-floorphoto550.jpgAnd what about Jacques Rogge (below, right), the puffed up Belgian “count” who so unfairly criticized Jamaican track star Usain Bolt’s exuberance (at left)?

RoggeWhat the heck is a count, anyway? Especially a Belgian count? I was under the impression that Americans laughed that nonsense out of existence in 1776, back when the country renounced “all foreign princes and potentates” (as you are required to do in the U.S. citizenship ceremony).

Sorry “Count” Rogge. I am not impressed. You’re a self-important snob. Resign and spare us the trouble of laughing you out of office!

The absurdity of the Olympics is so obvious that I can’t believe anyone takes those medals seriously. How can a medal in the 400-meters be equal to a medal in dressage? Just about everybody runs, but how many people participate in dressage? How many people can afford to participate in dressage?

Then there are those sports – such as gymnastics or diving – where the judging is so subjective that watching them just makes me mad. I am sure the judges have their reasons but it seems strange that the Chinese are so good and the rest of the world so bad. I can’t see much difference in the performances unless somebody takes a tumble or does a belly-flop, and even then the scores often don’t make sense.

I concede that gymnastics and diving are popular worldwide, and a lot of kids actually participate in these sports, but until some objective means of scoring is found, they don’t belong in international competition.
Then there’s the International Olympic Committee’s “investigation” into the ages of some Chinese gymnasts. Talk about a cover-up! But I don’t really care about that. The Chinese can include babes in arms in their gymnastic team as far as I am concerned. The whole thing is ridiculous, anyway!

I would like to raise the spirit of one of those ancient Greeks who thought up the Olympics and ask what he thinks about today’s masquerade. I bet he would shake his laurel-wreathed head in bewilderment.

But they didn’t have companies like Coca-Cola back in those days, so there wasn’t the motivation for a worldwide marketing event disguised as athletic competition.

gwgraeme

I am a Jamaican-born writer who has lived and worked in Canada and the United States. I live in Lakeland, Florida with my wife, Sandra, our three cats and two dogs. I like to play golf and enjoy our garden, even though it's a lot of work. Since retiring from newspaper reporting I've written a few books. I also write a monthly column for Jamaicans.com

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