I Can’t Help It, I Have to Talk About It

The It, is the Olympics. I am an Olympic addict; I can admit that. Somehow when Olympic time rolls around, I am suddenly fascinated by Greco Roman Wrestling or some other obscure sport that I would NEVER care about otherwise. I am not a sporty person, in all actuality, but I do enjoy watching some sports. I think it’s a case of I know what is supposed to happen, I just could never make my body do it.

However, I was good at gymnastics. I think I took it for about 8 years or so, until I became an awkward teen and didn’t want to dress in a leotard anymore. That’s really what made me stop; sad but true. Now, my nieces are half amazed/half embarrassed most likely when I do cartwheels or round-off back hand springs in the yard with them. After all I am incredibly OLD at 33, you know.

My love of gymnastics is what brings me to this post. I am sad/disappointed/angry at how 1) we all KNOW the Chinese women’s team have underage gymnasts 2) the judging has seemed so very skewed this go round and lastly 3) the fact the everyone seems to have just thrown their hands in the air and said “well, we can’t do anything about it.

As far as the Chinese Women’s team having underage gymnasts, I think the IOC will look completely impotent if they do not investigate this matter. Their answer has been, “Well, that’s what their passport reads…”. What kind of investigation is that? How ’bout asking around a little? If these girls are underage, it’s unfair to all the other teams going by the rules, and it makes the Olympics, a time for countries to come together for games (hello, people, they’re games) look  bad to say the least. If the girls aren’t underage, then they deserve to have the truth out there so their names are clear. But let’s be honest, I am pretty sure that at least two of them are 14. I’m sure they were told it’s for the betterment of their country, kinda’ like the little singer who wasn’t cute enough to be on TV said she was just happy to have her voice out there. It just shows you how a communist country has its tentacles in every aspect of their citizens lives.

2). Let’s talk judging for a moment. I am not a sore loser or sour grapes. I do understand the judging process and I can’t believe someone who fell during competition can beat someone who didn’t, when their difficulty values were close to one another. In both the women’s and men’s competitions, it seemed like the Americans were getting totally slammed while the Chinese were taking tenths hits on their scores. There’s no doubt, Yang Wei is at this point the best gymnast in the world and deserved the all around gold, but go back on watch the Americans and the Chinese again. The announcers (who are former gymnasts) on NBC were at a loss and second guessing themselves when like Cheng Fei fell. They weren’t sure she’d be penalized for it by the end, after seeing how the judging had gone previously. Now I don’t know if the judges just really hated the Americans, like Shawn Johnson. Personally, I don’t think they liked her because she didn’t weigh 73-77 pounds, like most of the Chinese gymnasts. Maybe they just really like the Chinese; or maybe they felt a need for some reason to judge the Chinese on a easier scale. Hmmm, now why would that be?

Lastly, before I get off my soap box, I just have to say, I am upset because everyone is tip-toeing around the situation. I know they don’t want to make the host country look bad, but would they be making the host country look bad, or would that host country be doing that all by themselves? It’s not the gymnast’s fault how they were judged, and end the end Nastia Luikin and Shawn Johnson got what they deserved in the all-around, but I think the margin was way too close. I just want ethics to be upheld in the Olympics. It’s an event I have always loved and I can’t stand to see it tainted.


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Rachel
    Aug 18, 2008 @ 18:32:43

    I totally agree with you, and so do the commentators, and so does Bela Karolyi…there is something really odd going on with the scoring in these Olympics. How can it be that someone who lands completely out of bounds on a vault gets the gold? Or someone who falls down scores higher than someone who does not? And why is the IOC turning a blind eye to the falsified passports?

    And I also agree – I think the Americans are getting docked for their size, which is abominable but apparently continues to be the fact of the matter in this sport!


  2. Christina
    Aug 18, 2008 @ 21:36:42

    Amen!! This has been driving me crazy and got me ranting like a loon at my tv and to the family (hubby and the kids just nod and say “yeah, you’re right” to placate me). Seriously, it makes me not even want to watch anymore. And my theory is, the Chinese are strong-arming the judges, or doing whatever it is that tyrannical communists do to make the world do what they want… makes me ill…


  3. asmalltowndad
    Aug 19, 2008 @ 12:11:09

    Who else can do a complete pike position flip while holding a 32oz cup full of soft drink! NOBODY but my Sis! I score that a 10

    It is sad to see so many years of hard work by these young kids taken away so unfairly, but we are Americans and deserving or not people around the world are jealous of what we have, and what we do accomplish.


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