I was *this* close to being a Winter Olympian. Except it was summer. And I mix things up sometimes. Okay, well, a lot.
Have you been watching the Winter Olympics?
Well, some of it. Okay, like 20 minutes. (Okay, the highlight reels.)
Is it just me, or are the Winter Olympics kind of like the ugly stepsister of the “Real Olympics”? Very few people actually get all hyped up about the Winter Olympics like they do for the Summer Olympics. Not saying it’s fair, folks, I’m just making an observation. Is it because more than half of the world remains unexposed to these wintery sports? Probably. In fact, I couldn’t play hockey if I wanted to. First off, no ice rink. Second, who’d play with me? Third, I’m not positive there are even rules to hockey. I pretty sure you just skate around as fast as you can, the ref blows a whistle from time to time, and then you shove an opponent into the wall for gettin’ up in your business.
I love hockey.
But there are other winter sports I have no access to. Speed Skating. Ice dancing. Luge. Bobsledding. Oh, and that sport where you get on skis, go straight down a roller coaster ramp, and then launch youreslf 300 feet in the air so that you can do flips. I’ve never even SEEN a ramp like that. Ever. And on that same token, how does one discover that they are perfect for that sport? You can’t just jump up there and go for it, can you? Same with luge. Where do you practice freaking luge? Have you ever been out riding around in the lower 48 states and seen a luge course? Do you discover one day during a huge snow storm that you’re pretty darned awesome at riding your Walmart Snow Bullet in the park and decide it’s time to look for a place to hone your skills? And who, pray tell, decided it was a good idea to strap themselves onto a miniature death trap, no padding, and launch themselves down an ice covered ditch at 90 miles per hour? That’s insane… and I’m pretty sure it’s illegal, too.
For that matter, who thought of MOST of these Winter Olympic sports? Most all of them simply involve avoiding death. Did you see the women downhill skiers? It’s a wonder they didn’t break legs and arms and heads with all that falling down they did. It was heartbreaking to watch. But, I am glad Christie Brinkley won. (yes, I now know that she isn’t Christie Brinkley. She just played Christie Brinkley on the cover of Sports Illustrated.) She looked really cute with her husband and Americans rock.
So anyway, these sports. I am thinking it’s kind of not fair. For example, Shawn White. Great athlete, no question. But half pipe. In the Olympics. Why is that an Olympic Sport any more than riding a skateboard in a half pipe? Are skateboarders doomed to the X Games? Why can’t skateboarders like Tony Hawk be in the Summer Olympics? What’s the difference? Is it because there are only about 7 different sports in the Winter Games and they’ll take anything remotely wintery? Why, yes, yes it is.
Take curling, for example.
Ice + Stones+ Sweeping = Sport. If you haven’t seen it, let me sum it up for you. Someone wearing spandex pushes a big round rock in a straight line. More people in Spandex take brooms and clean the ice in front of the stone at the speed of light. The Stone stops at the end on some kind of dart board. The end. Can you imagine how clean the kitchen floors of those athletes must be? Of course, the cleanliness is probably limited to a straight line from the fridge to the table, but still. I bet you could eat off that line. Maybe they do eat off that line. Maybe that’s how they practice.
Now, if you’ve been on the net at all since the start of the Games, you’ve no doubt seen pictures of the pregnant Canadian Curler.
Pregnant+Ice+Stones+Sweeping= SPORT. Still a sport.
Herein lies where I missed my calling.
When I was 8 months pregnant, I decided we NEEDED a patio on the back of our house. A really big one. With stone walls. So I made Jon build it. And he did, with the help of a few friends. He jackhammered out the old sidewalk, he used a skidsteer to level the area, he put in the rebar, he smoothed the concrete, he sealed it. Really nice work.
And I would have helped, but hello? I was pregnant. And it was July and really hot. So, when it came time for the stone walls to be built around it, I was the moral support. And the sweeper. As Jon would move the stones from one place to another (some were well over 50 pounds each and I would discover they MUST be moved for one reason or another) and then fill them in with tiny little stones & mortar, I would sweep out the loose stones. But then I got tired of sweeping, and it was way nicer to sit in the lawn chair and eat popsicles. So see?
Pregnant+Ice+Stones+Sweeping= SPORT. Pretty much the exact same thing. I missed my calling. Unless the popsicles make it a summer sport, in which case I guess I’m screwed when it comes to the Winter Olympics.
Oh yeah, and I am too fat to don a hockey outfit. Those things are just not flattering. Talk about adding 10 pounds.
So, later folks. I’m off to Walmart to upgrade to a better sled and see if Tony Hawk wants to come with me.
Look out 2014.