By Gordon Robinson
Our current Olympic obsession appears driven by relatively unimportant objectives. Persistent medal counting has obscured the true value of the Olympics, which I see as being the last hope for world peace.
To achieve world peace, fighting must stop and talking start. Today, there's only one opportunity for humans of every creed, religion and nationality to meet and greet peacefully; lions to lie down with lambs; Bolts to fraternise safely with Gays. James Carville might say, "It's the Olympics, stupid!"
However, the way Olympians have been using this opportunity suggests that the path to world peace begins only with world 'piece'. In other words, in these Olympics, like many before, the real Games won't be televised.
After years of intense training, more than 10,000 young, healthy boys and girls are thrown together in a bubble that excludes reporters and parents. Hormones sufficient to produce any genetic researcher's wet dream swirl around incessantly. Athletes still consume up to 9,000 calories daily while no longer in full training. Where's this excess energy to go?
You guessed it. Media cameras are excluded from the Athletes' Village because, were they allowed, we'd be flooded with amateur Internet porno flicks.
"Tonight you're mine completely.
You give your love so sweetly.
Tonight the light of love is in your eyes
but will you love me tomorrow?"
Remember Sydney Games organisers ordering 70,000 condoms before the Games but having to supplement them with 20,000 more? These days, standing orders of 100,000 condoms per Olympics are made.
Legendary US women's footballer Brandi Chastain (famous for removing her shirt after scoring the 1999 Women's World Cup's winning penalty; currently embroiled in a war of words with US Olympic goalie Hope Solo) spoke of her 1996 Olympic dining-hall experience: "When I walked in for the first time in Atlanta, there were loud cheers. So we look over and see two French handballers dressed only in socks, shoes, jockstraps, neckties and hats on top of a dining table, feeding one another lunch. We're like, 'Holy cow, what is this place?'"
On the way to practice fields, according to four-time Olympian, javelin thrower Breaux Greer, "The girls are in skimpy panties and bras, the dudes in underwear, so you see what everybody is working with from the jump ... ." His Sydney roommate, shot put silver/bronze medallist John Godina, expressed awe at Greer's prowess, calling the dorm room a revolving door of women.
Greer boasted that he was "visited" by three women daily. One "tried to dominate me"; and another was "very talented". "I was a happy man going into competition," Greer reminisced.
"Is this a lasting treasure
or just a moment's pleasure?
Can I believe the magic of your sighs?
Will you still love me tomorrow?"
So, the next time TV analysts find themselves scrambling for ways to fill time, try this discussion. Hopefully, none will repeat the inane question, "What's the point of participating if there's no chance to win?" Sexual opportunities are only by-products, not reasons why persons train for years to qualify among the world's best. Only one can be world number one. Should nobody else compete?
More than Usain Bolt
So, the London Olympics isn't about Usain Bolt. It's more about Samantha Albert and her horse Carraig Dubh, or 'Danny', who represented Jamaica with pride and credit. Or Alia Atkinson's quest, against the odds, to fulfil her potential. The Olympic Games are ALL about participation.
Media houses obtaining 'exclusive' Olympic broadcast rights have 'won' the responsibility to produce a professional product. Commentators garbling the audio by speaking over the official opening ceremony announcer and CVM pre-empting the broadcast at a crucial time for a lottery draw were irretrievably unprofessional.
Expert analysts should understand the events being covered and anchors should avoid usurping analysts' roles. Rohan Daley, a young broadcaster whom I hold in high regard, has disappointed in coverage of the London Olympics and needs to get out of his analysts' way. His anxiety to both anchor and analyse invites disaster. For example, his insistence that Samantha's participation was pointless. Rohan, was there a point to the Reggae Boyz's 1998 trip to France?
During the wait for Alia's historic swim-off, Rohan destroyed Alan Roy Marsh's excellent event set-up by stating categorically Alia was already in the final. This not only overreaches as anchor but, worse, devalues Alia's effort, win or lose.
Will You Love Me Tomorrow, originally recorded by The Shirelles, written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King, was the US charts' first No. 1 song by an all-girl group. It ranked 126th among Rolling Stone magazine's 500 greatest songs of all time.
Peace and love.
Gordon Robinson is an attorney-at-law. Email feedback to email@example.com.