I haven't been watching nearly as much of the Olympics this year as I usually like to. For example, I missed USA's come-from-behind gold medal win in the 4 x 100 swimming relay, which apparently was the greatest thing ever. Dang it.
Here's just a few stray thoughts on the few events I've witnessed:
--Shooting competitions are taking place every day of this week, nine days of events all told, but the TV coverage was limited entirely to this past weekend. I managed to catch some coverage Sunday, but some friends of mine here did not. And Texans love their shooting. This seems like poor scheduling to me; I have to imagine the entire middle section of the U.S. would love to see more of this stuff.
--Very nifty story regarding the shooting today: India took their first ever individual gold in the 10m air rifle competition. Sweet! And then various Indian agencies rewarded the winner, Abhinav Bindra, with nearly $400,000. Super sweet! If you want to be an Olympic ringer for hire, my suggestion is apply to India.
--NBC and Michael Phelps himself are trying really, really hard to convince me that Phelps, the soon-to-be gold medal-winningest Olympian ever, is not a complete tool, but I'm not buying it. That dude bugs me.
--Why does men's beach volleyball even exist? If there is no possibility of seeing Misty May's ass, what is the point? (Trying to keep my Google hits up there. I've fallen all the way to 7th place in overall searches for that phrase. Which is a disgrace: I used to be #1.)
--Favorite minor event I've caught so far: badminton. Those guys are frickin' savage! I would not want to be in the way of that shuttlecock. (Hee hee! I said "shuttle.")
--I've watched synchronized diving two nights in a row. The general consensus around Austin (and perhaps around the world) seems to be that this event is a total waste of time, but I love it. It is entirely random, I don't deny, but there's something about the athletic discipline combined with the fantastic photography -- that camera that drops straight down with the divers, all the way underwater, is brilliant -- that fascinates me.
--I'm watching the women's synchronized diving competition right now, and I'm sorry, but one of the Chinese competitors totally has a penis. Seriously. I call foul.
--Haven't seen any basketball or tennis yet. I barely care about the NBA, and seeing the "Redeem Team" romp all over their competition in the Olympics doesn't hold any additional interest for me. But if Federer plays Nadal in the men's tennis finals, in a rematch of the Wimbledon finals, I'll skip work if I have to to watch it. (Or I could TiVo it, but it sounds more dramatic that way.) Those guys are awesome.
More coverage later. Go Team USA!