In Defense of Nothing...

Saturday, August 16, 2008

i want to be like mike.

to say that i've been obsessed with watching michael phelps in the olympics would be an understatement. and i know that i'm not the only one, as nbc is reporting record numbers in viewership during primetime swimming events.

i've been loving all of the articles online and in the blogosphere about how unfair all of the attention is; and that other athletes are competing in his shadow.

why should we care? why should we care that an american olympian, baltimore born & raised, is the face of the beijing games in the united states? why should we care that he has won more gold medals than any olympian in the modern olympics' 112 year history? or that he has tied a record that was last set thirteen years before he was even born?

we should care because he's done it all the old fashioned way, with hard work & dedication, sans drugs.

we've held other athletes on a pedestal in the past: michael jordan & the dream team, derek jeter, that whiny bitch brett favre. but think about it. really think about it. swimming is not considered a spectator sport in the u.s, and is rarely televised. so swimmers that work their asses off just as much as nba/nfl/mlb stars, without the kabillion dollar a year contracts, have the olympics, once every 4 years, to show the world what they can do.

i agree that he's not the only olympian. and others work hard too, there's no doubt about that. but even amongst one's own team, there must be a winner. and for the u.s, michael phelps is it. and he's got the medals & the world records to prove it.

so for 17 days out of every 1460, if the proverbial spotlight never leaves the likes of michael phelps, it's okay by me. because i want to be like mike.

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