Monday, August 8, 2016

Olympics Binge

As much as my intellectual side can be cynical about the Olympics--the cost, the doping, the commercialism, the challenges for the local economies--I get caught up in them every time.  Friday night, Mama brought home Brazilian food--lots of grilled meats, some cold avocado and also potato salads, a hot ham and cheese potato dish, a nice "beef pancake," a delicious flan, and some interesting guarana sodas--and we ate before watching the Opening Ceremonies.  We loved the dancing and the music.  I liked the weaving with the gigantic strands; the kids liked the dancing on the giant display floor and in the favelas.  The opening shots of people playing sports from overhead was neat, too.  We  didn't make it long into the Parade of Nations and, when we tried to watch the next morning, we realized our DVR hadn't gotten the torch lighting because the show went too long.

Since then, we've watched many sports, particularly ones we don't know well.

  • We like rugby and marveled at how they pick each other up.  We saw several women's sevens games.  I remembered a lot of history of the school of Rugby, Thomas Arnold, Muscular Christianity, Samuel Smiles, and later WWI from my research into the paintings of boys fighting from William Mulready in the 1830s.  Mama and the kids were kinda surprised.
  • Fencing was fun.  We saw epee and foil, which I did a little of in college--enough to try to explain parry, riposte, and right of way.  But these fencers move so fast that we could hardly see the touches in slow motion!
  • Sis really liked dressage and enjoyed identifying the types of horses for us. 
  • both trap shooting and air rifle 
  • archery
  • white-water canoeing
  • both mens and women's gymnastics
  • swimming
  • synchronized diving--mercy, those Chinese women divers!
  • some handball and water polo and field hockey
  • and we won't be watching any golf or basketball
And there's so much more to look forward to.

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