Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Contest/Give Away Day 2: The Olympics

I love the Olympics. Especially the winter Olympics. My family is ... tolerant.... of my addiction. It's just two weeks, my husband tells my kids. There are other TVs in the house, I tell them all. Yes - I have confiscated the best TV - the big one near the fire and the comfy couches. I cheer. I sometimes yell. I wear red white and blue and cry at the stories they tell of the athletes. I sometimes cry at the commercials.

I love the Olympics. Maybe part of it is the memories from childhood of sitting with my dad all winter watching Wide World of Sports, fascinated with the ski jumper who fell off the ski ramp every single week on the opening scene, a tribute to the Agony of Defeat –

and the slalom skiers who raced on trails with the sounds of their skis cutting through the ice faster than I'd ever gone in a car.

Back in the days when skiing was on TV, even when it wasn't the Olympics. Before snowboarding and moguls and short track skating. Yes, I'm that old.

Now, the only time I get to see those great winter sports is during the Olympics. Once every four years. You bet I'm taking over the TV for two weeks.

More than the sports, though, the Olympics is full of stories. Full of athletes with huge dreams and high hopes. People that have pushed their bodies farther and harder than I will ever even come close to.

And it's really hard to not make writing comparisons.

1. Olympians and writers both start with a dream that seems often impossible.

2. Olympians and writers both face heartache.

3. It takes dedication and determination, especially when the road is hard.


4. Sometimes you feel on top of the world, like everything is falling into place exactly where it should be.

5. Sometimes you feel like you're barely hanging on.


6. Sometimes you have to take risks. The bigger the risk, the bigger the fall... or maybe the bigger the success.

I bet you think the second part of the contest today is making comparisons, but it's not.

The fact is, I always wanted to be in the Olympics. Not in that, Oh I love this sport and I think I'll work my butt off kind of way, but in the sitting on the couch watching thinking, that would be so cool kind of way.

And way back when, I wanted to luge.  You know - the thing where you fling yourself down a tube of ice on a tiny sled and hope to go as fast as possible and arrive at the bottom alive:


Even before the accident this past week, though, I'd decided maybe that wasn't in the best interest of living. You know - not that I had any hope of ever doing it, but in my head I dreamed.
But now I've found another dream to dream.

Snowboarding Cross.  Like a mix between skateboarding, skiing, and Mario Cart Wii. Only faster. And higher.

Like skiing and flying combined. They make it look so easy, this gliding and soaring thing they do.

So for another point in the book giveaway, or just for fun, what would you do if you got to go to the Olympics?


  1. Snowboard cross...and I'm not brown nosing. The speed, the variety, the absolute cat-and-mouse play of the race make it a truly competitive sport. And it's one of the very few head-to-head competitions in the Olympic games. You don't have to worry about the judge from Idontcareistan awarding a low grade...it's just about who crosses the finish line first. And while it's a competition, the participants seem to be some of the happiest and most free-spirited Olympians on snow. Yah, that's what I want to be.

  2. Alex - I totally agree on every point!! Had to laugh at the idontcarestan! :)

    I saw an interview with Lindsey Jacobellis about her last minute fall last Olympics and she just shrugged and said, "I wasn't trying to showboat. We just grab our boards sometimes because it's fun. It's what we do. And I fell." I loved her attitude!

  3. Winter-Figure skating and Summer I'd be a gymnast. I was really good at gymnastics, but then I got uhh..top heavy. :0)

  4. Hockey! I'm really looking forward to the hockey. It would be very fun to represent the USA on the ice.

  5. Figure skating hands-down. This is in an alternate reality where I am actually coordinated and muscular. I forgot it was that time again. I actually got to be in SLC during the winter olympics, but as I was a poor student only watched the ice sculpting which was free.

  6. Wow, fabulous photos! Um, I'd pick couples figure skating. Always wanted someone to lift me up over his head and spin me around :)

  7. Hmm... which one? Because I'd love to do gymnastics. :0) For winter... probably ice skating.

  8. I'd compete in some crazy snowboard thing- in pretend world. Not in real life. My legs and skull mean too much to me, so I'm saving those vital body parts for getting damaged from being flung off a horse.


    I'm not a big sports fan but I love the olympics. We got to watch the first gold medal ever won by a Canadian in Canada, and it was awesome. I love all the little countries with one or two athletes. I cheer even harder for them!

  9. Kristi - LOL! summer I wanted to do skulling. As you can tell, I was a road-less-traveled kind of gal. :)

    Paul - I should have known!!

    Jessie - I could kick myself for not getting to SLC that year. I was in San Fran that's probably as close as I'll ever get.

    Corey - are you crazy??

    Kristin - I think there's something freeing about soaring and gliding across the ice that isn't totally unlike snowboard cross. I always thought that would be cool, too.

    Heidi - well, duh! Of course this is in an alternate universe!! In what real universe would I even consider getting up on a snowboard, let alone hurdling myself down a hill on one??? But in the alternate universe...yeah. I rock the sport. :)

  10. Well heck then, I'm gonna win Olympic Heli-snowboard- jumping!

  11. i would be the person who hands out the medals. Im not that coordinated untless there is a writing olympics and Id be all on it.

  12. Swimming! In winter I would do figure skating or hockey. :-)

  13. it's a competition, the participants seem to be some of the happiest and most free-spirited Olympians on snow. Yah, that's what I want to be.

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