Monday, August 11, 2008

Let The Games In My Pants Begin – TRICKERY UPDATE!

After watching the Olympics’ opening ceremonies on Friday night, Brooke and I decided two things: 1. that maybe, just maybe, the Beijing Olympics really are worth our time; and 2. that the Chinese are dangerously organized, and could rule the world with martial arts, mesmerizing rhythmic drumming, and trickery* if they wanted to.

And yes, it may sound smug of me to say that the Olympics, the oldest and most cherished global sporting tradition, borne of the ancient Greeks and Romans nitpicking about who would be ancestor to the modern world, isn’t worth my time. But I don’t mean it like that. I love the Olympics. I love the national camaraderie, the chill moments, the pursuit of perfection, and the heartwarming stories – like the 9-year old Chinese boy who not only survived the earthquake but saved two of his classmates by digging them out of the rubble, and when asked why he risked his life to save his classmates, said, “I was the hall monitor, it was my job to look after my school mates.” INSERT SNIFFLING HERE.

The problem I’ve always had with the Olympic Games is how big they are. For a control freak like me, I hate feeling like I’m missing out on something – that someone is winning a gold medal over here, while the inspirational Eric Moussambani is competing over there. It’s the same reason why I don’t read about global economics or the Electoral College: I’m never going to know everything about it, so better not to broach the topic at all.

So in a two-week event that encompasses sports as varied as archery, badminton, baseball, basketball, boxing, canoe/kayaking, cycling, diving, equestrian, fencing, field hockey, gymnastics, handball (WHAT?), judo, modern pentathlon, rowing, sailing, shooting, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, tae kwondo, track & field, triathlon, volleyball, water polo, weightlifting, and wrestling, you’re bound to miss something. Which is a shame, because even though the American media would have you think differently (Why don’t you just give Michael Phelps a handjob and get it over with, NBC?) all the gold medals are equally important regardless of what event they are won in. Just because everyone goes gaga over the 100m dash doesn’t mean that the guy who secured gold in trampoline should go home with his head hung low because no one want-

Wait, did I say trampoline? You bet I did! Apparently it’s been part of the games since the year 2000 and, in my opinion, has remained a grossly underappreciated event. Which is why, aside form a new, limited edition sidebar box detailing my Olympic Moment of the Day, the only sport I will be covering here is trampoline. (That’s probably a lie.) And I promise to do it with style, grace, and thoroughness, or, in the event that those three things are unavailable to me, humor and guesswork. Trampoline doesn’t start until day 8, so that gives me plenty of time to prepare.

In fact, Brooke and I have already started. We began trying out some moves on the bed yesterday, but after one of us (her) hit our head on the ceiling fan, we thought it would be best to have sex instead. Don’t worry, I brought home the gold. U-S-A! U-S-A!


* If you were as blown away as we were by the pyrotechnics display, someone had better call the cops because you’ve been had. It turns out that some of the beautiful and seemingly dangerous explosions that took place during the opening ceremonies were in fact computer generated for TV. Because that’s what the Olympics are all about – deception and tomfoolery. Who does China think they are, American sprinters circa 1998? HAHAHA, steroid humor.



It seems that fireworks aren’t the only victims of China’s rampant duplicity. Reports came out today that the adorable little pig-tailed girl who sang China’s national song “Ode to the Motherland” during the opening ceremony was nothing but a red herring! And that’s not even a communism joke! The Chicago Tribune explains:

“Lin Miaoke may have appeared to be the star of the Olympics opening ceremony after she sang "Ode to the Motherland;" however, one member of China's Politburo revealed Miaoke had lip-synched the song, after the original singer, Yang Peiyi, was told she was not good-looking enough.”

It’s the old switcheroo! Once again, Beijing has managed to capture the true essence of the Olympic games: breaking the hearts of unattractive little girls. Chen Qigang, the ceremony’s music designer, was quoted as saying, “Our rehearsals had already been vetted several times – they were all very strict. When we had the dress rehearsals, there were spectators from various divisions, including above all a member of the politburo who gave us his verdict: we had to make the swap.”

I’m not sure exactly what that means, but I’m confident that Angelina Jolie will get to the bottom of it. Also, Puppy just laid his chin down on my foot and it’s the cutest thing ever. Way cuter than Yang Peiyi.


Blogger Arielle said...

In China's defense, I heard the fireworks and whatnot really did happen, but they made computer graphics to look like it for TV because they were afraid the cameras weren't going to catch it properly. Whatever.

P.S. I also sometimes feel like I'm missing out on stuff because there's so much to watch. And I had dreams of being an olympic trampoliner. Trampolinist? Too bad really all I can do is jump up and down.

August 11, 2008 at 7:24:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Camels & Chocolate said...

I agree. The Olympics is so daunting and stressful and why am I so obsessed by the women's gymnastics team who averages out to be like 12 years old???

August 11, 2008 at 9:02:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Hector said...

I have to respectfully disagree about one gold medal being equal to any other gold medal. I was at the Salt Lake Olympics (not that my presence has anything to with anything, I just wanted to mention it) and the fact that people going 90 MPH on skis and winning by 7 hundredths of a second while literally risking their lives as their thighs scream in burning agony get the same gold medal as a bunch of fucking snowboarders who go down a halfpipe for twenty seconds and do some tricks which are judged to be either "totally righteous" or "bogus" is a joke. Swimming 100 meters in 46 seconds is a superhuman feat, being really good with an airgun from ten meters is not.

August 11, 2008 at 9:54:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Snowboarding tricks aren't that much different than figure skating, arguably the most popular winter olympic event.

And until you can shoot an airgun with more precision, or snowboard better than the athletes, you are in no position to be judging which gold medals are more valuable.

You can only judge what entertains you more.

August 11, 2008 at 10:37:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

how did we not touch At All on the fact that BMX biking is in the Olympics this year? you can't overlook that kind of crazy shit.
it's like the year they added Roque, because it was apparently a sport in the US city the Olympics were held in and Not ONE other country competed in. Who approves this stuff?!

August 11, 2008 at 10:56:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tug-of-war was an Olympic sport in the early 20th century. I'm pleased to report that England are the current champions, despite being disqualified four years earlier for "persistently sitting down".

You know what, history magazines are more fun than they're given credit for.

August 12, 2008 at 4:40:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Kate said...

Handball. So funny that you mention it. My boyfriend is Romanian and I was asking him about sports he played when he was younger. He's like soccer and handball. I was like "is that like raquetball with your hands?" (A swing and a miss). Turns out is sort of a combo soccer/basketball thing with rules that I really can't discern. So pretty much what you thought it was too.

August 12, 2008 at 10:43:00 AM EDT  
Blogger Falwless said...

Okay, listen. I've been reading this little gem of a diary of yours for so long now and never commented, because a) there's no chance we'll ever have sex so why bother? and b) you scare me with your superstar status and your hilarious acerbic wit.

But I just gotta say, for whatever reason, the thing that made me laugh most here was the 2. that the Chinese are dangerously organized, and could rule the world with martial arts, mesmerizing rhythmic drumming, and trickery* if they wanted to.

I lost it at "dangerously organized," fyi. I don't know why but that hit my funny bone square-on and won't quit. Seriously, those Chinese people scare the living jeebus out of me. I'm still not convinced they're not all some sort of alien robot-people sent down to populate manufacturing plants and occasionally dance in queer perfected synchronicity.

Anyway, nicely done, Dan. I adore you and this sweet, sweet innernets diary which you keep.

August 12, 2008 at 11:02:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not only is Tramopline an Olympic sport but it's also responsible for the popularity of shows like, America's Funniest Home Videos/People/Animals/Whatver. Nearly half of all submissions had SOMETHING to do with a trampoline.

(The pros call it "The Tramp." Now you're down with the lingo. You're welcome.)

August 12, 2008 at 12:52:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yeah trampoline!

August 12, 2008 at 2:21:00 PM EDT  
Blogger surviving myself said...

But really, who the hell cares that some of the fireworks were fake and that little girl didn't sing?

As long as we get to watch Misty May, then everything is okay.

August 12, 2008 at 3:50:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Chardsy said...

If NBC needs someone to volunteer to give Phelps that HJ I will gladly sacrifice myself for the greater good of the nation.

I am so selfless.

August 12, 2008 at 6:02:00 PM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love the Olympics through your eyes. Such wit, insight and bullshit.


August 13, 2008 at 9:55:00 AM EDT  
Blogger SkylarKD said...

It's all over the international media that the poor little 7 year old girl wasn't pretty enough to be shown at the opening ceremonies.

Sheesh, I hope someone's paying for her therapy.

I love the quote from the Olympic media rep though: "The reason for this is that we must put our country's interest first," he added. "We had to make that choice. It was fair both for Lin Miaoke and Yang Peiyi ... We combined the perfect voice and the perfect performance."

Ahhhh... well if it's in the country's interest... :P

August 13, 2008 at 7:33:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Beach Bum said...

Ah, handball -- was my favorite sport growing up. I don't believe no one knows of it here in the US (and I think you guys no longer have an olympic team either, due to lack of funding). But it was sooo much fun! You have this smaller version of a soccer ball, except it bounces so you can dribble around (hence the hands part), but the purpose is to score a goal with it (the goalie area cannot be entered, so you had to do it from about 10 ft away).

Said that, I think in Brazil after graduating high school no one plays handball either.

August 17, 2008 at 1:16:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous said...


No need watch all the coverage; I am doing it for you.

I am on a mission to watch every single minute of Olympic coverage in order, thanks to my DVR and a heavy fast-forward finger. You might be interested in my live-blog of the Olympics, here:

August 17, 2008 at 10:45:00 PM EDT  
Blogger Anjum (barsaat) said...

ditto to falwless' comment! This sentence alone made this post rock:

2. that the Chinese are dangerously organized, and could rule the world with martial arts, mesmerizing rhythmic drumming, and trickery* if they wanted to.

August 18, 2008 at 10:12:00 AM EDT  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

my lowest moment during the olympics was when i stumbled into the coverage of race walking and continued to watch because i wanted to see who would win. race walking. thank god this only happens every four years.

September 2, 2008 at 4:52:00 AM EDT  

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