Four Things I Learned From the Olympics
1) I still harbor a grudge for the Cold War. I want Russians to fail and I want Americans to be the ones to beat them.
2) I take personally the anti-American and even anti-Bush attitudes of Europeans, even if I don't care for Bush all that much myself. I rejoice in American victories over the snooty Europeans and I hate hate hate when Europeans beat Americans. I imagine that Italian speed skater who beat Davis and Hedrick in the 1500 m thinking, in a ridiculous pizzeria Italian accent, "Those-a fat-a lazy Americans think-a they can-a compete against-a a son of da Roman Empire? Fat-a chance." Pisses me off.
3) I don't have much of a problem with Asians or even Canadians beating Americans. I think it's because Americans are clearly superior to Asians and Canadians in every way that matters (math and science aptitude don't matter, in case you were wondering).
4) I love sports because you don't have to have good reasons, or any reasons at all, really, to dislike certain teams or athletes. Watching sports is like a little vacation from politeness and civility. I can rejoice without guilt when Slutskaya falls on her butt. Who cares that she has a sick mother and adorable chubby cheeks? She's Russian. It's ridiculous, I know. I was barely conscious at the end of the Cold War. But that's the beauty of sports: it doesn't matter. I can boo Dirk Nowitsky just because he's German (in fact, I did once). When the competition is over, of course, I go back to accepting people for who they are and not holding irrelevant characteristics against them. Except for the Dutch. There's something about those pot smoking, shroom eating, secularists that gets to me.