Friday, August 17, 2012

The perks of being an armchair athlete...

With the Olympics over, I've been feeling -all week- like it is 4 am and I've just come from a rave.

You know, 'twas an epic night. I'm savouring that euphoric feeling...and yet...and yet it is tinged with an all-too familiar here-comes-the-crush sensation. By crush, I mean that sinking feeling that sets in the minute it hits you that the mundane will be waiting for you the minute you wake up...
I love the Olympics. It is the one time I get to indulge my inner armchair athlete to the max. 

Swimming, track events, basketball and women's beach volleyball have always been my fave events and a must-watch, but I always find myself watching events I would never bother to watch on a normal day like judo, gymnastics (which I can only describe as eye-popping insane), synchronised swimming, diving and fencing (this year, I pretended to be Arya Stark taking her 'dance' lessons). Hell, I even surprised myself by watching the entire Japan Vs. USA women's soccer final and I'm not even a soccer fan.

But it doesn't just stop there...

-I'll happily ogle, then get into a passionate ogle fest daily analysis with like minded individuals the next day...
-Solemnly swear (I usually mean it at the time) that I will never ever skip any of my walking/jogging sessions...
-Be reminded of the fact that I'm not the only person on earth who unleashes their inner fan girl/boy and that they know how to have an Olympic-themed ball. 

The ultimate perk?

The human stories. I get to (re)discover and be wowed by the infinite depth of the human spirit. That is what gets eternally etched on my mind. And the entire Olympic experience-even when mixed in with the not so cool- is profound and magical...There were the moving wins and heart breaking losses; history was written and re-written, legends were born...and of course, to top it all off oh-so beautifully were the quirks and light moments. I toyed with the idea of doing a recap, in photos and videos, but then I found out that Eddy Kimani had already done a super cool recap of the 2012 Olympics.  Do click and enjoy, people.

But before I sign out, I leave you with a few of my honorable mentions in the  'light  moments' category that were not featured on Eddy's list: 

-The US Olympics swimming team decided to get creative and made  this fun "Call me maybe" video .
-Watching the camaraderie between members of some teams was special. For a second, it almost seemed like they were not in a competition. And in some cases, in a competition where they were pitted against each other.
- I discovered (to my delight) that  Hip hop and equestrian games can mix oh-so beautifully (on hearing the track, I snorted my coffee)... 

-I went all 'I can't believe he just said that out loud' when Nicholas Bantum of the French B-ball team remarked, "I wanted to make sure he had good reason to flop."  AFTER punching Spain's Juan Carlos Navarro in the groin. Apparently, Bantum was seriously pissed and tired of the Spanish team's 'diving' tactics.

Aaaaand, I just have to give it up to the creators of all those crazy Olympic-themed memes that had me busting a gut in the office.

I actually found myself pondering on how to pull off the McKayla Maroney peeved look (thanks to this meme) and still look as badass as she did...

-Then they anted it up with the  mofarahrunningawayfromthings meme...

FYI, TDKR is a seriously awesome, gloriously dark movie...Say, Mo would have been an unforgettable extra, no?

"Mo, I feel you. They seriously creep me out too."

A brief side note (rant): To those who threw a hissy fit (our local Tv stations had me pressing the mute button during prime time news) 'cause of Kenya's performance, I'll say this: Athletes do know when they have come up short and they do beat up themselves over their performances. Alot. Their reaction alone can easily tell you that.

Don't be that guy who makes it his mission to rip into them just 'cause you can. Especially not when you're seated pretty on the sidelines; merely watching the action. It's not cool (plus, there's something so disturbingly easy and spiteful about it it seriously bugs me out).

We all win and lose some. You can't be on top all the time. The cool thing...the important thing is to work at it. Do show up, give it your absolute best and when it is over, go back to the drawing board...tomorrow, win or lose, is another day.    

I watched several Olympians from various countries who had either not made it to Beijing (either due to illness, injury, or failed to make the cut during national trials) or simply lost at Beijing, find redemption in London.

With that in mind, let's remember, there's always Rio.

Mob wendos,



  1. Inner armchair athlete? I like that. Ha! There's something about watching them do things we cant even begin to consider that lifts the spirit. And the ogling is fun too no?

    PS. I'd never have tagged you for a junkie...