Monday, August 18, 2008

The Good Girl Watches: 2008 Olympics

Can we say, obsessed much? I am not going to even pretend that I have not anticipated this all summer. If you know me at all, you will have heard me say "Is no one else as excited as I am?!" or "so when are we having the Olympics party?!" Quite frankly, my suspense has bothered everyone. Maybe it's my unconcious dream of being an Olympic athlete. Or maybe, I am just so full of patriotism that I can't help but watch the tired athlete at the end of his/her race stand there and admire a flag that represents so much to them. It is hard to believe that my heart can be so full FOR them, when only they know what they have put into it.

I think that more than anything, I enjoy the background stories of the athletes. Was their family supportive? Were they naturally gifted, or did they have to overcome certain obstacles? Either way, it is always moving. Just for a second, you are able to step into their world and realize that this is something that they have worked for their entire life. A four-year competition that means more to them than any medal could signify. For most of us, we wish we were capable of loving something that much. The outpouring of love and support that these people receive is so touching, that it seems like it is one person reaching a goal for many. You have Michael Phelps, who not only achieved the unthinkable, but he did it for his family and his country. After every race, there his sweet family stood with tears in their eyes, proving that this was far more than the performance, this was a triumph.

I recently heard that the Olympics are important, in that, they are one of the last cultural representations of global communication that bind us in a positive way. As I thought about this, I realize how true it is. Every four years, we are able to come together under the blanket of competition and be together. In that moment, we are relevant, we are competitors, and we are friends. The touch at the end of the buzzer, the strength through the race, the perserverance in the face of defeat, are nothing short of inspiring. I know that I've enjoyed watching it, and can only hope that my training will pay off and I'll finally get that gold for the gymnastics all-around that I've been chasing...

...just kidding.

2008 Olympics Highlights:

Phelps Phever

Men's 400 IM Relay

Nastia Liukin's Gold Medal Performance for the Women's Gymnastics All-Around

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