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The Olympic Columns
The thrill of victory, the agony of defeat, the result of steroids
Winter Olympics 2010 (Vancouver)
Welcome to the iOlympics
If there’s one thing you discover after watching 8,247 hours of the Olympics on TV, it’s that even a funny commercial becomes tiresome after seeing it three commercial breaks in a row. Well, that and it all starts to feel awfully, well, familiar. What we need is new event blood. Like maybe a couple more biathlon events. Or to drag the Olympics out of ancient history and into the 21st Century with the post-modern pentathlon.
Summer Olympics 2004 (Athens)
The New and Improved Olympics!
Traditionally the Olympics have been about royalty sports, like equestrians (“The sport of kings”), badminton (“The sport of princes”), and synchronized swimming (“The sport of queens”). This year there’s only one new event — catfighting. I mean, women’s wrestling. If they really want people to watch they need to make some bigger changes.
Winter Olympics 2002 (Salt Lake City)
Let The New Games Begin
People get tired of watching the same old thing. That’s why each time the Olympics rolls around they add a few new events to keep things fresh. This year they've added the women’s bobsleigh, the skeleton, and the biathlon pursuit. A group is lobbying to add bridge to the 2006 Winter Games in Turin. If they really want to spice them up they should have the athletes shoot at the Olympic mascots, institute Olympic shoplifting, and have the Downhill Souvenir Smash. Now those would bring us some fun Olympic Moments.
Summer Olympics 2000 (Sydney)
The Olympics – The Greatest Freak Show on Earth
It’s amazing that freaks were banned from sideshows in the U.S. during the ‘70s yet watching them is not only legal but the favorite post-Survivor pastime. Normal people can’t leap 8.55 meters in a single bound. Normal people don’t swim across a pool faster than I can drive. And normal people don’t go home crying before they compete like Marie-Jose Perec of France did because they have paranoid delusions about people following them. At least not the people I know.
Winter Olympics 1998 (Nagano)
Upgrading the Olympics

This year there are two brand new events: snowboarding and women’s ice hockey. There are several other events which, while not being seen for the first time, are probably unfamiliar, including the 200m Luggage Carry which is held at the Nagano Airport and the 5 km Slip ‘n Slide which takes place between the parking lots and the event viewing areas.  As a public service, here’s a guide to the newer additions to the Games.
Summer 1996 Olympics (Atlanta)
Hurdle This
Olympic fever is in the air. TV stations are running countdowns on the nightly news, Time magazine devoted an entire special issue to it, and The Olympic Torch Relay crawled through your town thanks to its sponsor, Coca Cola, the official caramel colored paint remover of the Olympics. Betty Crocker came out with her SuperMoist Team USA™ Cake Mix, Kellogg’s put out a mutant cereal, All American Rice Crispies, and the official mascot, Izzy, is everywhere, even no one knows what he is. Or why.

  Skywriting at Night - a novel by Mad Dog

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