Will Robin Hate the 2012 Olympics?


I hate the Olympics.

This often shocks people to discover, probably because my hatred of the Olympics really doesn’t mesh with some other prominent parts of my personality, like my overactive patriotism and excessive enjoyment of spectating sport.

I have my reasons, if you care:

  • Too many bullshit “sports” are involved like, really, CANOE SLALOM? Come on.
  • The hyper-dramatic, emotionally manipulative coverage of athletes’ adversity, such that I feel like I should cry when whatever poor bastard comes in FOURTH PLACE OUT OF THE ENTIRE WORLD because did you see about how he beat cancer and is doing this in honor of his dead sister and the silver place finisher is his childhood best friend and now they are hugging and crying?
  • Horrific pageantry that results in things like this:
  • They completely take over television and the universe’s attention for FAR TOO LONG.

That said, I have in the past let myself catch a touch of the Olympic fever.  The 2010 Hockey Gold Medal Game was AMAZING FUN even though a) we lost and b) it was hockey.

And this still makes me get choked up:

WAIT, HOLD UP, I just shed an actual tear. Oh, Kerri Strug, you are a real American hero.

ANYWAY, there are a variety of factors conspiring to make me possibly not hate the Olympics this year:

  • I am homesick and my need to bask in the glory of America is greater than ever.
  • I will also be delighted by South African Olympic victories, so I have more to root for.
  • London as a host helps because a) the UK isn’t a human rights violation factory like some other recent Olympic hosts AHEM AHEM b) the UK is incredibly easy/delightful to make fun of.  DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE JOKES FOR EVERYBODY!
  • I am also only one time zone off from the host city, so the “good” events will be on at reasonable times.
  • This is probably my best chance to achieve my 30×30 goal of getting a bar in a foreign country to chant “USA! USA!”
  • I am lonely and bored.

People, I just don’t know.  This could go either way. Are the male swimmers still wearing wetsuits? That’ll probably be the deciding factor.

[In case my view on that subject is not obvious to you: WETSUITS ARE BULLSHIT. SHOW US THE GOODS, OLYMPIC SWIMMERS.]




  1. Cheer for the US women’s soccer team. They are awesome and seem fun to hang out with. They made this video which was kind of crazy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SV9kNdezp3k. Also cheering for women’s soccer is a societal good that you can do – in the US the women’s league just went bankrupt and the IOC is basically keeping these women from having to work at Home Depot.

    • PS DVR has really changed my life re: the olympics. It allows me to fast forward past the Bob Costas emotional BS about the athletes directly to the oogling of olympic swimmers (PS bodysuits are gone! Bring on Ryan Lochte’s muscles!)

  2. I kind of love the Olympics? I mean, I don’t tune in to every event or even keep track of those things, but I do enjoy them, even the weirdo sports (actually, especially those). I don’t normally watch televised sports- even the Steelers, I usually do my laundry and grocery shopping during the games. The Olympics are the exception, though I also felt guilt about the location of the last summer games.

    Mostly, it comes down to the stories that come out of it, like this one: http://www.theawl.com/2012/07/1948-london-olympics

  3. lol, I think every reason you listed for hating the Olympics are actually reasons that I love them so deeply when I care so little about sports generally. All those random sports where you can just feel everyone being so surprised that anyone’s paying attention to them! Stakes are higher because it’s only once every 4 years! Indulging in nationalism without having to fight any wars!

    Although I do frequently wish I could mute Bob Costas.

  4. I enjoyed this post a lot. Here is why: I too hate the Olympics. Luis was horrified by this admission, especially because this is the first Olympics he can root for the USA in good faith (as you can imagine, his native teams usually don’t perform so well).

    On the other hand, when I lived in Mexico, I became unhealthily obsessed with all markers of American-ness, however foreign to me when I actually lived in the US. Case in point: I cried when the Giants upset the Patriots during Super Bowl XLII — a LOT. I am pretty sure that’s the first time I ever watched an entire Super Bowl. True story.

    So I relate to your desire to bask. I will also be relenting and watching some Olympic programming this year in the interest of making fun of the host country. It seems only right. Finally: Danny Boyle?

    All this is to say that I hope you follow up this post with detailed commentary, since we now know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that you will be watching it.

  5. You’ll be very pleased to know that the wetsuits are out, but only in swimming – prepare yourself for the athletics http://www.examiner.com/article/london-olympics-2012-swimming-speed-suits-out-track-speed-suits-in

  6. Pingback: Winning and Losing for Small Business | The small business marketing strategy and psychology blog of Michael Christon

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