The Chinese women's gymnastics team is taking some heat about the purported age of several team members. I did catch the women's team finals, and I thought several of the girls looked around three years old.
Yes, Olympic rule-makers? Isn't it called "WOMEN'S gymnastics?" Per Olympic rules, young women must be sixteen years of age to participate. I don't know what the age of consent is in other nations, but if they want to call it WOMEN'S gymnastics, don't you think that participants should be able to vote, marry without parental consent, serve their country in the military, and/or sign a legal release form for Girls Gone Wild? (Which should really be called Women Gone Wild, if Joe Francis wants us to believe the participants are either willing or 'of age.')
Every year I pretend like I could care less about the Olympics, but then I'll watch some silly event and end up biting my nails, yelling, jumping on the couch and occasionally covering my eyes, saying, "Oh God, I just can't watch. Tell me when he nails it." I went with friends to the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, and we watched the US Men's Volleyball team get spanked by Brazil. This is only memorable to me because I got a giant black stain on the back of my white t-shirt from the damp stadium seating and had to change into an Olympic t-shirt, the only time I have ever attended an event festooned in clothing that celebrated that same event. The next day we watched men's water polo, which was much more interesting, but for other reasons...later, I drank Leinie's Berry Weis for the first time and rode on the shoulders of some Australian guy, waving the Australian flag and singing along to the live band busting out hits like "Brick House." Afterwards, as we rode the MARTA back to where we were staying, my friend Becky shouted, "Alright, whose breath smells like kitty litter?!?!"
It's the tender moments you remember, really.
Years earlier, when I was maybe eleven, I loudly declared during a family get-together as we watched the Olympics that someday, I would be a world-class swimmer. I would! I really would! Just watch me!
That worked out well for me, didn't it?
(PS: I was going to post a photo of our motley crew from 1996, but I realized I was wearing a fanny pack in NEARLY EVERY SHOT. So, sorry. No photos of me in a fanny pack will be allowed online.)
My deep gratitude to the excellent staff at Harry W. Schwartz bookstores, who hosted an amazing event for me last night. I had such a blast; thank you to everyone who came out! Plus, I got to meet some long-lost family...(hi Margaret and Morgan! You are both absolutely charming!!!)
I'm posting at The Debs tomorrow on my daily routine (how exciting should THAT be?), and if you're in Appleton, Wisconsin this Sunday the 17th, stop and see me at the Barnes and Noble from 1-3 pm. (4705 West Grande Market Drive)