After all the bad sportsmanship that I had remarked on during the NFL games this past season, I wanted to point out some good to balance it all out. I have been watching the Winter Olympics this year, and the athletes are quite wonderful as always. But last night as I watched I was thoroughly impressed by the men doing the half-pipe as they competed.
As many of you know, Sean White, from the U.S., has had two running golds in this event and was expected to take home another because, well, he is an impressive snowboarder! But this year his performance was left wanting and he came in 4th. When Iouri Podladtchikov, from Switzerland, won – the surprise on his face was evident. And instead of standing up and pulling a “Sherman” he and Sean hugged, Sean adamantly praising Iouri’s performance over and over again and Iouri bashfully accepting that he had the better run. Both of them when interviewed gave the other compliments and praise on their athletic abilities. Sean was a graceful loser, and Iouri a graceful winner.
To me, THIS is the kind of sporting attitude I want my children to see. Yes, it sucks that Sean lost and I am positive that he is beating himself up about it over and over again – but he handled the loss like a PRO. And it is awesome to win, I am positive that Iouri is screaming his head off about how great it is to get a gold, but he handled that win like a PRO. That is the way I want my children to grow up thinking about sportsmanship. Grace and poise! Rant done! 🙂
The glint of the light off the blade,
The ice before you laid.
The swish as you glide,
Grace, beauty, poise, pride.
The arc of your arms smooth and round,
The tilt of your head, barely missing the ground.
The wind on your face as you pick up speed,
The twist of your body, fulfilling your need.
Sparkles, glitter, posture, slope.
The art of your sport giving out hope.
The spinning delight, as low as you can,
The height in your leap as you reach out your hand.
The smiles, so brilliant, bowing at the end,
The joy of watching you in figure-skater-land.
So this is one of those years that I can be glad that my childhood dreams of figure skating and going to the Olympics never came true. There has been absolutely NO positive advertising for all of the activity going on in Russia that would make anyone want to participate this year. I take my hat off to all those hard working athletes who have put in the time and effort to be awesome, who are now having to be awesome and cautionary in everything they do while in that crazy country.
I am a classic coward, so any threat at all and my flight instinct kicks in. I cannot imagine how anyone can hold up under all the terrorism threats and not so great visiting conditions that everyone has to endure in this years Olympics. The latest article I read was about how people can put together an explosive in a toothpaste tube. I just cannot comprehend how anyone can put themselves at such great risk, even for a gold medal.
I just hope that given the risks that all of the athletes world wide are now having to take, that they will all remain safe and secure (even if being comfortable is out of the question) during all of the competitions that are now beginning. My ultimate respect goes out to all of them!
*Referenced article – http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/02/06/dhs-warns-airlines-explosives-in-toothpaste-tubes/?intcmp=latestnews