In Defense Of: The Winter Olympics

| Cadenza TV Editor

Sweden’s Helena Jonsson heads downhill during the Women’s 7.5-kilometer Sprint Biathlon in Winter Olympics action at Olympic Park in Whistler, Canada, on Saturday, Feb. 13, 2010. (Wally Skalij | Los Angeles Times | MCT)

Sweden’s Helena Jonsson heads downhill during the Women’s 7.5-kilometer Sprint Biathlon in Winter Olympics action at Olympic Park in Whistler, Canada, on Saturday, Feb. 13, 2010. (Wally Skalij | Los Angeles Times | MCT)

The news recently broke that NBC will likely lose money on the Winter Olympics. I don’t understand. Yes, it kind of makes sense that the country is in a bad place economically. But that cannot be the only reason why. I need to ask: Why the hate?

I read an article for class earlier today that posed the following question: What kind of person would leave the television on with no one watching? Answer: For the next two weeks, me. The Winter Olympics provide so much entertainment. So what if it’s not the Michael Phelps—I mean, the Beijing Olympics—anymore? Winter Olympic sports are just as cool as any 200-meter dash or 100 butterfly relay. I am not a person who watches any sports, but one of my suitemates does. Earlier in the semester, the TV was always on, either showcasing the Australian Open or the X-Games. Normally, I wouldn’t care about any of these events, but the exposure made me care. By the end of these two weeks, I had my favorites (I’m talking about you, Andy Murray and Bobby Brown) and I was devastated when the Games ended. The only thing that got me through was that the Olympics were so soon.

Is it weird that the idea of a sport that combines cross-country skiing and rifles makes me ridiculously happy? The biathlon seems like such an odd combination; how can you not like it? And curling—the entire sport consists of pushing stones towards concentric circles. I want to do that! Then, there are the sports that Americans take seriously. Alpine skiing is great to watch. It’s amazing what those skiers can do. They go so fast and have such control of their movement. Why can’t I do that? For those who complain that they are going to miss gymnastics this time around, why can’t they recognize how fun figure skating is? Ice dancing is way more interesting than the floor routines in the Summer Olympics, anyway.

I am personally invested in men’s speed skating, because I once met Apolo Anton Ohno at an ice cream place in Los Angeles. He was really cool. But even if I did not decide to get an ice cream sandwich that night, I would still care. Why? Because the Winter Olympics are awesome. I do not get many opportunities to show pride in my country. But how great does it feel when you hear “The Star-Spangled Banner” during a medal ceremony? Pretty awesome. I love the Winter Olympics. Even if I am not going to develop an emotional attachment to someone like Paul Hamm this time around, I will still care. And I will leave my TV on for the next two weeks, to show how much I do care.

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    I thought the Vancouver games went of really well. Besides the luge guy who died.