The Winter Olympics have proven to be great family viewing. I think everyone except my three-year-old really enjoys them , and he even puts up with them for the most part. We've actually all been sitting on the couch watching the prime time coverage - a rare family TV viewing experience.
The Winter Olympics have always been entertaining, but adding HD to the mix, with the white snow and colorful uniforms and equipment really adds another level. Then you've got these new sports like ski-cross - did you see that one? Four guys (do women do it too?) racing on a track over jumps, while wearing skis. They have a snowboard version of this, which seems considerably less dangerous, as having eight skis flying through the air in close quarters, well it seems like a recipe for disaster. I did see one bad crash, but amazingly, for the most part, it turns out it's probably less dangerous than the straight-forward downhill.
Speaking of which, how about Bode Miller? Great Olympics for the philosopher skier. His quotes are fascinating. I read an article today, which pretty much accused him of sabotaging his previous Olympics because he wouldn't have been able to handle the fame. The impression I got was that he was already very famous in Europe, and that may have been a pain, but that was nothing compared to the pain he was anticipating as the posterboy U.S. Olympic success. He said he pretty much would have felt like a hypocrite because there is so much politiking and money-grubbing that goes along with the Olympics that he just couldn't deal with it. Or at least that's what I think he said.
Miller did go on to compliment that the Olympics as the pinnacle of his sport as well, so he said it was a double-edged sword and this year's he's been able to ignore the negatives better. Plus, I think he blew up his image so badly last time with talk of drunk skiing and the like, he really has little chance of being used by the USOC for their ulterior purposes - You've got to remember, this guy was, by all accounts raised in a hippie environment. Anyhow I'm glad to see his saved face this time around, if only to hear him philosophize about how making the perfect run at the perfect moment is so much more important than the gold medal.
U.S. Hockey Team
And how about that men's ice hockey team? Great win over Canada last night. It's been a great tourney for the U.S. guys so far, although a medal is far from guaranteed, but even more exciting, it's been a train wreck for the Canadians. Granted, the Canadians, on their home ice, playing their national sport, could still put together a medal run, but they're clearly behind the eight-ball. Losing to the U.S. was bad, but being pushed into OT by the Swiss hurt them even worse I think. Heads will roll if they don't make it out of the quarterfinal match vs. Russia. Why do I find this amusing? Canadians are nice people aren't they? Are they too smug about their hockey perhaps? I guess it's just great tragic theatre playing out and I love a good show.