Sunday, July 29, 2012

The Boring Olympics: Soap Opera or Sport?

I remember being excited about the Olympics, but these days, I have no interest. The Olympic spectacle seems more about grandiosity, pageantry, and securing lucrative endorsement contracts for its prized athletes than the competition.

Let's face it, the Olympics are about big business, commercialism, and frivolous entertainment. I even read that the hand dryers in the restrooms at the Olympic venues have had their manufacturer logos covered up by Olympic sponsor logos. Those Olympic officials don't miss any opportunity to make a buck. 

More significantly, coverage of the athletic competitions themselves is dominated by those syrupy "Up Close and Personal" features, segments showcasing this or that particular athlete who has overcome some form of adversity. They run on and on, taking time away from the actual events. They make the Olympics look more like "Days Of Our Lives" than a sports event. (Apparently, these segments are intended to appeal to the female viewership.)

On the other hand, the Olympics have made some progress on the political front. There's less political strife: the Capitalist versus the Communist systems (Melbourne 1956), discrimination of African-Americans (Mexico City 1968), boycotts (Moscow 1980, Los Angeles 1984), fascism (Berlin 1936), and terrorism (Munich 1972). 

So, instead of sitting in front of the TV watching the Olympics, I plan to do something beneficial: devote more time to physical activity.

No comments: