August 10, 2012

Why I Don't Care About The Olympics

     Last night I stumbled across Cory Tell All Sports' excellent piece on why people love the Olympics, and it got me to thinking why I don't really care about them.  After pondering a few different reasons, I came up with the one explanation for why my passion for the Games is so low.

     One of my favorite aspects of watching sports is seeing all of the storylines unfold.  Sure, double-amputee runner Oscar Pistorius was a great story, and countless other athletes overcame a lot of adversity to get where they are now.  But I can't get emotionally invested in these people because I've never seen most of them before.  Americans fell in love with Gabby Douglas once she started winning medals, but outside of national pride, I had no reason to care.

     Contrast that with my favorite sports moment, Super Bowl 42.  The Giants' upset of the 18-0 Patriots was an incredible story all on its own.  But I watched the Patriots win quite a few of those first 18 games.  I saw the Giants almost beat the Patriots in the meaningless regular season finale just to prove a point.  I had seen Tom Brady gradually change from a scrappy backup quarterback to a smug and talented superstar.  I remembered when Eli Manning was a struggling rookie and heard the criticism he received from the media in his first four seasons.  To me, the teams weren't just names or the representatives of a certain region.  They had their own personalities and stories that I knew a lot about.  That connection to what's happening on the TV is what makes sports a captivating event instead of a mildly interesting athletic contest.  With most Olympic sports getting little to no coverage outside of the Games themselves, the Olympics can't provide that kind of interest for me.

(The same argument goes for Little League, which is on all the time now!!!!!!)

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