Friday, February 10, 2006

Olympic Bug

I have not forgotten, in fact I currently have two other posts halfway written (even on the 'pute and not only in my head) about my last post, and current dilemma. But....


I am more than a freak when it comes to the Olympics. I love them. I love just about everything about them (except maybe boring biathlon) and try to watch and soak up every moment I can. I love when they are hosted in European countries, time zones permit daytime coverage for current/live action, then slow-poke NBC shows it again in the evening and if you can't sleep in the middle of the night, you can often find it being shown somewhere on some channel in some language. And if ever (we can hope) a Canadian wins that gold and the anthem in played, you'll find me sobbing alongside my box of tissues (and over 7 over at every replay).

My Olympic fettish started when I was 9 years old. The 1976 Montreal Olympics. I was there. In fact, I was there in person when Nadia Comaneci received her very first perfect 10. I was there! There was a small commotion in the crowd, I said to my Mom, "That girl only got a 1.0" and the man in front of us turn around to correct me "Actually, she got a 10, but the scoreboards can't show it." I will never forget that. We also spectated at diving, soccer, athletics and men's gymnastic finals. OMG I remember the thrill of actually seeing a real Olympic medal awarded, even from our beyond nosebleed high level seats.

Then I was able to attend some events in Lake Placid for the 1980 winter Olympics. I was with my father at the outdoor speed skating oval watching a training session. A coach from one of the European countries leaned over to me, pointed some guy out and said "You watch that guy." So I did. I have always since been thrilled to brag that I saw Eric Heiden in one of his pre-medal haul Games training sessions.

At one point in my life about 25 years ago I was even on track to go to the Olympics, as an athlete. I went to the 1984 trials. Got as close as an alternate to the alternate list of alternates, but loved every moment of having that dream to reach for. I went home and watched my close friends and teammates win gold medals, break world records, and never once felt sorry for myself.

I have even since traveled to Lausanne, Switzerland in September 2000 and spent hours (OK, days) in the Olympic Museum.

2 years ago, our schedule was rather conducive to watching the 2004 Games from Athens, with two 2 year old boys with 2 hour naps every afternoon. No more. It will be a bit of a challenge having the TV on and not listening to someone beg for Dora or Toy Story or Magic School Bus or Bob the Builder etc. I have been preparing for this. I have been chatting up the Olympic spirit in hopes of bring my boys on board. We have been talking about the sports we will watch, from hockey, to figure skating, skiing and as twin A calls is 'tobogganing' (?). We will have to wait and see how this all pans out. This morning on the news they were showing the Olympic torch being carried in the streets of Italy somewhere.

"Mommy! Mommy! Fire!! That man is running away from the fire and he is scared! Oh no Mommy, he will be so sad! Help him Mommy! Turn it off, there is FIRE and he is scared!"

Sigh. I may be watching a lot of replays in the evenings.


Blogger DaniGirl said...

How is this possible?? How is it possible that I think I know you so well, and you continue to surprise me?? It's one of the things I love best about you, I think!!

You know what, your Olympic love is addictive, because I am much more of an Olympic-junkie now that I have ever been. I will forever have the most wonderful memories of watching the 2002 Salt Lake City games, because I was due and then past-due with Tristan, and sitting and watching the Olympic coverage on the sofa was about all I could achieve. My cousin and Beloved were afraid I would spontaneously go into labour as we watched the gold-medal hockey game. (Alas, no luck - it was four days later, in fact!)

Great post!

1:07 PM EST  
Blogger DaniGirl said...

One more thought - you've got me going now!! Every time I see Salé and Pelletier, I think of assembling the wooden cradle I used for both boys (and vice versa - the cradle makes me think of Olympic skating) because I spent hours assembling it while watching the news conference about their medal. Funny how we link memories together, isn't it?

1:09 PM EST  
Blogger BeachMama said...

I didn't know you went to trials for the Olympics!!! And that you know/knew Victor Davis! He was a hero of mine in High School.

My neighbours best friend was in the '76 Olympics as a gymnast. I ask her how it was to be there with Nadia and she gets a sparkle in her eye when she tells you stories of being there. She loved every second and would do it again in a heart beat. Both of her kids are working towards being in the Olympics one day!

A friend of ours from High School (Renn Crishlow) went to two Olympics, I want to say '92 & '96 or if that is the right years for summer sports. He did the K1 and K2. He loved it too and it was a shame that he did not bring home a medal as he was ranked #1 in the world. He had asthma and just pushed too hard off at the beginning.

Ack! I have hijacked your blog. Also know Max something, something '88 swimming, he loved it too and tries to go to as many summer Olympics as he can.

Anna - better stop there ;)

3:05 PM EST  
Blogger twinmomplusone said...

Ohh, I too am addicted to the Olympics, actually my whole family is. Seems like we always link an event in our lives according to what Olympic year it was or World Cup year too!! My dad still talks about the Grenoble Olympics in 1968, close to his hometown, my mom of the Barcelona one, her hometown, of course we lived through the Montreal one and again last year Athens ;)

I LOVE the Olympic spirit, how for 2 weeks the youth from all over the world meets. The opening ceremonies always bring me chills, kinda of a naive hope for world peace. My only claim to fame as far as knowing/seeing an Olympic star was going to the same gym as Elizabeth manley and taking care of Charlene Wong, another figure skater.

Way to go Nancy, Olympic tryouts, impressed. Still remember that accident which claimed Victor Davis. A very sad day.

We already have the Olympic schedule on our fridge and will be cheering right along with you!!

3:44 PM EST  
Anonymous Snack Mommy said...

Woo Hoo, Olympic junkie over here too!! Although I imagine, I will do most of my viewing the same way in which I watched the 2002 games.....middle of the night with a babe in my arms.....not too bad now that I think about it.

As Dani pointed out, you always have these surprising little facts about your life, that you slip out in bits and pieces. Rather like Twinmomplusone. All the more reason to keep you both close in my life so I can learn more facts about you amazing women.

5:33 PM EST  
Blogger Barbara said...

Nancy - I can't believe i'm commenting on the blog of an alternate to the alternate list of alternates for the US Olympics!

Can't wait to tell my son when he wakes up in the morning!

10:43 PM EST  
Blogger Marla said...

I am thinking of you tonight - my mother is probably crying on her sofa tonight as she watches the skating. If you ever meet her, after she tells you that I was adopted, that I used to be known as the "Chlorox Kid" and that I only liked my vegetables raw, she'll tell you that I could have gone on to the Oympics if only I hadn't quit skating."

Then I'll have to explain there wasn't a chance of that happening, because even though I had ten badges in skating, after bashing my nose on the boards during a Flying Camel gone wrong - the sight of blood bouncing on the ice guaranteed that even if I had talent, drive and determination, I didn't care to continue after that.

I am so interested to hear more about your Olympic potential some day! Add it to the post queque, madame!

9:39 PM EST  
Blogger Silver Creek Mom said...

OK...sigh, haven;t seen one moment of the Olympics yet. I haven't been able to catch it. I hope to before they are over. Although I'm not as thrilled about them as you are, I do like to catch a few minutes here and there.

WO you saw Nadia WIN GOLD! I remember watching that on T.V.

And you could HAVE been...How cool is that! I wish I had some sort of secert like that to spring to the worls but alas I have NOT!

Very exciting!

8:53 AM EST  
Blogger Suzanne said...

Wow, Nancy, I am so impressed that you were so close to Olympic greatness! I am trying to interest my kids in the games, but other than skiing they couldn't care less. Sigh. I do like the Winter Olympics, much better than the summer version.

8:38 PM EST  

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