Have you been watching the Olympics? It's been a constant backdrop here and I've been knitting very productively through most of it. There is something about watching all of the athletes competing for their countries that is inspiring. It's especially so in the team sports and there is nothing better than hearing our anthem and seeing our flag waving as they stand atop the podium.
Anyway, I have a few thoughts on this year's games.
- Tara Lipinski & Johnny Weir - I would never have chosen then to do commentary but they are brilliant. It's not just that I don't mind their commentary - I welcome it. They are definitely adding to my enjoyment of the skating. When they explain stuff it just makes sense and they do so in a way that's accessible and colorful. And then there are their coordinated outfits which are colorful too. I'd love to see more of them next time.
- Ice Skating - it's such a treat to watch the skaters in their sparkly, feathery, and sometimes quite weird costumes skating. They are so graceful and they make it look so easy. I can almost forget for a minute what I look like on the ice which is the opposite of graceful.
- Good Sportsmanship - as the parent of a child who plays competitive sports this is a big deal to me. It stinks when players on other teams are nasty or, even worse, their coaches are. We've seen great examples during these games of athletes being gracious in their defeat. Look at Shaun White who shocked us all when he didn't medal but he behaved in a way that still made us proud.
- The Pageantry of the Opening Ceremonies - every 2 years the games are held someplace new and the host city/country gets to show off a bit and tell us a little about themselves. It's always interesting but this year it didn't quite do it for me. It was grand but it was also a bit off. You know what I mean - Right?
- The Parade of Countries - this is always my favorite part of the opening ceremonies. It's fun to see the athletes in their matching outfits. They always seem so energized and happy to be there. This year you could see so many of them with their smart phones out taking pictures of the crowd and taking selfies. It all seems so innocent.
- Sochi, Russia - Like most of the world, I knew nothing about this place before the Olympics. Sadly what I'm taking away from these games is that it was a really poor choice for the Winter games. The summer games might have been great there but holding the Winter games in a place where jackets aren't necessary and the ice and snow don't come naturally seems foolhardy and wasteful.
- The Extremeness of the sports - I really don't know how else to put it. When you see the acrobatics of the skiers and snowboarders doing those flips and twists as they race downhill it is amazing.
- The US Team Sweaters - Ugh, just ugh. They just seem so corny, like the most obvious interpretation of the American spirit. Don't tell me that we couldn't do any better than that.
- The Colorful, Patterned, Walls and Backgrounds at the Venues - I really like them. There is a patchwork quality to them that makes me smile.
- USA Hockey - Go team. Our men's and women's teams are killing it over there. I can't wait to watch them in the medal games. It's strange because I'm not big on watching sports on TV usually but the Olympics are different.