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Ohh the Olympics
updated: Aug 11, 2012, 12:00 PM
By Ms. Abomb
Hi, I'm Angie, and I'm addicted to the Olympics. It's time I explain my weird behavior over the last
couple of weeks. My addiction is the reason I've been randomly tearing up at work - I'm thinking about
the women's gymnastics team winning Gold (or Jordyn Weiber not making it to the all-around finals).
It's the reason I stay up way too late and fall asleep in front of the TV - I cannot bear to miss the final
qualifying heat for the 100M hurdles! It's the reason I'm running back and forth to the coffee shop
across the street from my office with my laptop in tow in order to use the free wireless and watch bits
and pieces of the Women's Soccer Gold Medal match (yes, I was the weird person cheering by myself
with the headphones on). I should also mention that I was streaming that match from the BBC online
since I don't have access to it through the NBC website because my cable subscription isn't good
enough. Let me apologize now to anyone who was subject to one of my extensive rants on this subject.
Why do I love the Olympics so much? Where do I start?! First of all, it's an event that only occurs every
four years. It's special. It's also an opportunity to witness greatness - the greatest greatness in sport.
It's a chance to see the ultimate level of commitment and perseverance. How many of us can say that we
committed to something so incredibly challenging every day of our lives for 4 years (or most of our
lives, which is the case for many of the athletes)? In my mind, the athletes are truly gods and goddesses.
After all, the original Olympians were the gods and goddesses of Greek mythology - Zeus, Athena,
Poseidon, etc. The early Olympic Games were dedicated to these gods. How much greater can you get?
Personally, I love the stories. I love to get to know the athletes and learn about the journey that brought
them to the Olympics. And for me, the Olympics do not begin with the Opening Ceremony - they begin
with the Olympic trials. It is there that I meet Team USA and become invested in their stories. For
example, the story of Lolo Jones beating the odds to come back to another Olympics in order to redeem
herself from the ultimate disappointment of hitting a hurdle in Beijing. Then she had spinal surgery! No
one thought she would even qualify, but she did. Then she made it to the finals! The fact that she
finished fourth is irrelevant to me (although I know it feels like losing to her), because just the fact that
she didn't give up on her dream and ignored the naysayers makes her an Olympic goddess. Hers is not
the greatest nor the most tragic story at this Olympics, but just one example of the journey we as
viewers can take with these athletes.
As my therapist (who is a fellow Olympics fanatic) pointed out to me, the Olympics allow me to
experience an intense range of emotions that are occurring outside of me. I get to feel exuberant joy
when someone achieves the dream they have been working toward. I feel intense sadness and loss when
someone loses a match or falters on a routine. These emotions are not always easily accessible or safe
to express in daily life. And of course there is the entertainment aspect - the excitement and suspense!
It's the finest in reality television.
Monday is going to be a rough day for me. If I appear despondent, you'll now understand why. But I
have already started planning for the next Summer games in Rio - my goal is to actually attend the next
Olympics and experience it in person. It's a long shot to think that I can really make it there, but a girl
can dream. If the athletes can overcome everything that they will to make it there, then maybe I can
make it there too.
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