Sunday, August 7, 2016

Citius. Altius. Fortius.

When health officials are warning athletes not to go into the water with open sores, not to swallow the water, and to shower immediately after exiting the water, you know those athletes probably shouldn’t be competing in that water!

That very same news report quoted experts as saying the water quality at some of the Olympic venues in Rio was consistent with “raw sewage”.

That’s among the warnings I saw reported by the media leading up to the Rio Olympics. Then, there’s Zika, the social strife, and the ongoing political crisis in Brazil.

How could the IOC allow the Games to happen under these conditions?


How could the IOC allow such rampant doping in previous Games?

Again, I shake my head in sympathy with disgraced Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson. He paid with his Olympic gold medal for being caught, likely at a time when so many others went undetected.

Citius. Altius. Fortius.

For so many reasons, I had decided I wouldn’t watch the Rio Olympics but, here it is, Day 2 - and I’m hooked! I especially enjoy watching the sports you don’t see televised very often; those include judo, badminton, wrestling and water polo.

On the other hand, watching the Olympics, I’m still irritated by the “sports” that are, incomprehensibly, included in the Olympic Games, like synchronized diving, synchronized badminton, synchronized uneven bars and synchronized timepieces.

Why? (Courtesy: Wikimedia)
Why is there beach volleyball, when there is no beach Frisbee, beach soccer, beach bobsled or beach campfires?

I refuse to see these as legitimate Olympic sports, but if I reach way down deep, I might be willing to recognize them as completely arbitrary Olympic sports.

There are other Olympic sports I’m genuinely thrilled to have discovered and which I can’t get enough of, including ski cross, snowboard cross and thanks to Rio, women’s rugby sevens.

Lots of sports should be included in the Olympics, many of which currently fall under the heading, “extreme”.

Faster. Higher. Stronger

While we’re on the subject, I also have a problem with multi-millionaires competing alongside amateurs. I don’t want to see NHL’ers, NBA’ers, PGA’ers, or WTA’ers at the Olympics. 

Go roll around in all the money you make for doing the same thing Olympic caliber athletes do solely for the love of sport. Let the Olympic caliber athletes compete against other Olympic caliber athletes, not unionized big business advocates whose motivation centres around their bank accounts.

A couple of months ago, the AIBA, the amateur boxing federation, voted to allow professionals in the ring with Olympic amateurs. The reaction was overwhelmingly negative. Not just mine.

Moneyius. Speakius. Loudius.

Whoa! Gotta go! The rugby sevens quarter-finals are about to start…

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