Monday, 6 August 2012

Olympics 2012

Here we are in the middle of this years rendition of "Who has the most medals?"
In this corner we have China - a relative newcomer to the world stage of Olympic gold.
Over there we have the US - been around for a long time on the Olympic gold stage.

It is all about the gold, who got gold? Who is the official sponsor of that person, where was
he born, what cereal does he eat, what shoes does he wear, what is his favourite fast food....

What happened to the thought that these athletes were just people who worked hard at
whatever it was they did? Now they have been turned into a thing used to sell something.
McDonald's, the official fast food sponsor for the games, again. What the hell is McDonald's
doing at the Olympics? The huckster of mediocrity at the place where people have worked
their whole lives to be the best. Anything for a dollar, McDonald's has spent a small fortune
so that when someone in London wants some fries, they have to have McFries. A small fortune
spent so that all over the world, people are shown the McFries are associated with the best that
humanity has to offer.

 The pressure to win, to get that gold medal must be crippling to these athletes. Look at what
happened to the triathlon competitor from Canada. She worked for years to get to the
Olympics, to show her dedication and drive. After two of the three events she was forced to
withdraw - "my legs have nothing left". She was in tears, apologizing to Canada for letting us
down. Who has made her feel that she has let Canada down? She is a shining example of what
it means to be the best. She fought and pushed and made the hardest step of standing in front
of everyone to be judged.  And she feels she let us down because she wasn't good enough to
get the gold.

This drive to be the gold is killing people. It no longer looks like people doing their best, it
really looks like who can get away with what.

I am proud of those folks who are out there, who have worked hard at what they do. They
deserve better that the tarnished image of what getting the gold has become.

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