Jewish Journal


August 14, 2008

The sport of sleep deprivation



What the 2008 Olympics taught me: Sometimes it is OK to hit mute, fast forward is your friend and it is OK if you can’t watch everything.

When you are staying up until midnight or later to watch Team USA dive, swim, tumble, spike and cycle, you need to be as flexible as the IOC when it comes to the ages of the Chinese gymnasts.

Wait, did I say that?

I meant you need to be as flexible as the IOC when the Iranian swimmer claimed he was “too sick” to compete in a heat that just happened to have an Israeli entrant.

Darn! Let me try again.

You need to be as flexible as Jason Lezak when he kicked trash-talking French booty a few nights ago in the 4x100-meter freestyle relay.

My husband and I didn’t plan to get sucked into the Olympics, it just worked out that way.

The only sport I looked up a schedule for was women’s gymnastics. But those darn people at NBC splice the broadcast so much that you end up watching three to four other sports. We found ourselves watching synchronized diving. Yes, I’m so ashamed.

We invited some friends over to watch the Opening Ceremonies. We added a drinking game component to the festivities (don’t worry, we used sparkling grape juice). Country you’ve never heard of? Take a shot. Announcers make stupid comment? Take a shot. Anyone mentions human rights violations or pollution? Take a shot.

I know that people like to think the Olympics are a way to bring the world together. Truth is, I can’t think of anything more divisive than the Olympics. You want to bring people together? Having the duke it out in a variety of sports only brings viewers together. It benefits the corporations more than the countries.

Here’s to you IOC:
•You put the games on in a country that forces the U.S. viewers to either stay up really late or wake up really early. Very crafty.
•You make the U.N. look fair and balanced.
•You allow a country called “Palestine” to participate but make Taiwan enter as Chinese Taipei.

Let’s hope that by the time Chicago gets the games in 2016 – as it will because the Windy City rocks – you will have these details worked out.

In the mean time, I will go back to watching Michael Phelps kick butt – right before I turn into a pumpkin.

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