Sunday, August 10, 2008

May I Say this About Roller Skating and the Olympics...

As I behold the tremendously exciting bike races (over the finish line like Derby thoroughbreds), as was just evidenced with a Brit woman speeding victoriously into Gold, and when I think of what authentic athletic excitement a group of roller skaters could supply traversing the same breathtaking course across this most beautiful country (China), I think of how the IOC has relentlessly (likely bowing to payoffs from the ice lobby) kept the sport of my boyhood out of the games year after year, century after century. Most of all, I think of the Judas Iscariot of the IOC, former president Juan Antonio Samaranch, himself an avid roller hockey competitor in his youth who could have easily moved speed skating on roller skates into the games, but in the end turned on his own sport.

To all the roller skaters out there who have for years deserved better, I share your outrage. The Olympics to which you aspire? As political and phony as the entertainment world it so shamelessly serves and is driven by. Which is why I rarely watch these slick spectacles of sponsorship mania, rhetorical allusions to "international good will," drug-enhanced cheats and naked patriotic narcissism.

Am I, by chance, bitter? Yes -- and proud of it.

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