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Feeling the Olympic Blues

USA! USA! USA! USA! This chant has run through my mind at all of the previous Olympics I’ve watched, both Winter and Summer games alike. A chant that could resemble the famous Rocky! Rocky! Rocky! chants from history’s greatest boxing movies.

Growing up, I would anxiously look forward to getting home so I could flip on the day’s Olympic coverage. The good ol’ US of A needed me to be there to cheer and yell at that small box TV. It wasn’t a need based on any superstitions that I held at the time—like I had for my favorite football and basketball teams—I was just genuinely interested in watching the USA team destroy the rest of the countries at the Olympics.

For the Winter Games I would be sure to gather around the library’s daily newspaper with 10 to 15 other students all interested in seeing how the USA was doing in the metal count. A pang of disappointment would always strike me in the gut if Team USA was not in the lead.

At some point in the last four years I lost that interest in seeing the USA win the most metals. I don’t know if it is because I have outgrown such things or if I’m sickened by the realization that the Olympics is largely a commercial venture set up to make people, or some corporation, wealthy. The controversies that seem to be more and more prevalent with modern day’s use of social media have left me disappointed. In a competition that should be all about the accomplishments of the athletes, it seems more and more it is about commercials, McDonald’s, Nike, NBC, etc.

The more I think about the problems that I seem to be having with the Olympics this year, the more I think that it all resonates back to what Dwayne Wade said when discussing his expected return to the Olympics. Here’s a guy who makes approximately $17.9 million per year not including his endorsement deals. That’s approximately $1.5 million per month, $344,230 per week, $49,041 per day, $2,043 per hour, $34 per minute. Ad he had the gall to complain because he would not be compensated for participating in the Olympics. Great comments coming from a guy who makes approximately $49,041 per day when the USA’s unemployment rate has been over 8% for what seems like forever. Can you say out of touch with reality?

Addie, unlike me, is completely caught up in the same excitement that I had while growing up. She hasn’t been tainted by Dwayne Wade’s comments. It’s exciting to see her quickly flip on the Olympics as soon as she gets home from school so she can see how the USA is doing. It’s exciting to hear her shout over to me with excitement that USA’s Women’s Volleyball team is going to win a match.

Hopefully a Dwayne Wade doesn’t come along when she has her own children and ruin the Olympic spirit for her.

Photo Credit: Flickr

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