End the Winter Olympics

| Staff Columnist

The Winter Olympics are boring. Like, really boring. We’re talking paint drying levels of excitement for most of it, folks. The main problem with the Winter Olympic Games is the sports themselves. So few of them involve any direct, head-to-head competition. That is what makes a sport exciting. When I am watching athletes show off their prowess, I want to see struggle. I want to see two people meeting, each trying to stop the other from accomplishing his goal. I want to see domination, not over some immovable, unemotional mountain, but over a man. I want to see someone face an enemy who can raise her performance, forcing the former to raise hers too, giving me a never-ending cycle of increasing determination and grit until one player can no longer match the other. That is what makes sports exciting.

Let’s take the luge, for example. Or skeleton, I suppose. The only difference is body position, right? Anyway, this is literally one of the most boring things possible to watch on television. The first time I see someone sled down a track, it might be marginally exciting. The odds would be better if I could see the whole track or if I were given any clue about what the big picture might look like. The odds would also be better if it looked like the athletes were doing anything that looked remotely athletic. It looks like they are just sitting there sliding downhill. It shocks me that someone somewhere thought this would be fun to watch.

Should the Winter Olympics be broadcast on TV?

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But it gets worse. After the first person goes, we are treated to the exact same thing umpteen times, with exactly two changes. The sledders’ uniforms change colors and designs, and the amount of time it takes them to complete the race differs by an amount of time that I cannot even experience because the constant cuts give me no frame of reference. The same can be said about any skiing event, the various figure-skating and ice-dancing events (though to a slightly lower degree), and every event that does not feature head-to-head competition.

I can just not watch the Olympics if I don’t want to, though, right? After all, if I ignore it, it’s like it’s not even there and my life goes on as normal, right? Wrong. I consider myself an avid TV watcher. Or, rather, I used to—because ever since the Olympics started, other TV has all but stopped. No network wants to risk their shows’ audiences defecting to the Olympics, so the airing of new episodes has all but ceased entirely. In their place are reruns or worse. The Winter Olympics are ruining TV for me, and I want them gone.

Randy is a sophomore in Arts & Sciences. He can be reached via e-mail [email protected]

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