Wednesday, August 08, 2012


Been watching the Olympics, mostly in prime time. I can stream the rest on my computer and have caught some oddball stuff they won't put on TV, but since I enjoy gymnastics and beach volleyball, what the heck.

And NBC, bless their little hearts, ran the women's Marathon on Saturday in its entirely. They couldn't cut away to cover something else? Because except for the first five minutes and the finish, two and some hours later, not much changed. Shifting to any of the other sports for highlights would have been much more interesting during those stretches where the front runners on the London streets maintained their positions for miles.

(No. I didn't watch it all. TV was on in the b.g. as I did this and that, and far as I could tell, they didn't cut away to anything else. Maybe they did and I missed it.)

Never mind. We won't go down the NBC only showing us stuff where the Americans had a shot at gold. They always do that. And then they inanely ask the winners, "So, how it did it feel to win? What were you thinking, Usain, during your nine second race?"

Thinking? Um, run faster than everybody else and cross the line first?

Can we get a break here?

But the gymnasts? Ah. 

You know about Gabby Douglas, who won a couple golds. She fell off the beam, but not during her signature trick, which is a back flip with a full twist. Do you know how wide the balance beam is? 

Less than the width of my palm.

I couldn't walk from one end to the other without falling off. Throwing somersaults, or leaping three feet up to come back down and alight with not even a major bobble? That's passing astounding.

The Russian girl, Mustafina, who won bronze on floor ex? A thing of beauty and mind-numbing skill, even though the American Aly Raisman took the gold there. Ponor, the Romanian? Just as gorgeous a routine. These little girls flew like eagles.

Then there is Zonderland, the Dutch guy on the high bar. Never seen anything like what this guy does whipping around that steel bar. After he finished, the gymnast who had to follow him shook his head and grinned, and you could read his mind: Holy crap! How am I going to beat that?

Answer: You can't. Even if you are perfect, which you won't be–these judges don't give out perfect scores. Zonderland did the most fantastic bar routine anybody has ever seen, anywhere, any time, stuck the landing, and they deducted almost a full point.

Watch the video if you can get it. It is amazing. 

This is the guy you want doubling Batman ...


Ed said...

A gripe - I didn't hear Costas infer about steroid use on any other big winners....just the little 16 year old chinese swimmer. She had a 50 meter section that was faster than Lochte. Couldn't be she just worked her butt off and being tiny to boot could fly on top of the water and at an age that can have big changes in performances could do it.... Anyway I just thought it was crap that Costas picks her out of the crowd of all big winners. I read a bunch of the Chinese swimmers were training in Australia with the Ausie swimmers coach (China paid three times what the Ausies pay him) They had a good time doing it - less stress. Seemed to help some of them.

Yes, that was an amazing high bar performance I saw last night - 3 release moves in a row! Don't think I ever saw that before.

I heard the Russian gymnasts have a lot of ballet background - their floor exercises were beautiful.

Looking forward to seeing Felix - USA - blow away the competition in the 200 tonight.

steve-vh said...

Flying Dutchman baby! Friesian I believe too (and yes I am).

steve-vh said...

they blocked the clip now. Here it is reloaded, quick while it's still up.

Justin said...

Amazing how, after team events an all-arounds, the US gymnasts lost their drive. Mikayla (sp?) botching her vault was shocking -- especially when nobody was sticking them.
My favorite event was women's beach volleyball. Misty and Carrie were just tremendous!