Olympics: Pink is Your Color

Photo credit: freedigitalphotos.net

Pink, pink. What’s wrong with pink? Sounds like you got a pink kink in your think.

– The Great American Jackalope in Boundin, a Pixar Short

This quote came to mind while watching the Olympics today. While pink is the predominant color, purple and orange also serve as highlights. I understand the organizers have planted orange, yellow, and pink flowers for the cyclists along their race. I came across this when I googled “why pink at Olympics.” I see others were curious about this when they came across my previous post.

So, I thought I should find out for myself. Besides the hot pink gymnastics arena, you will also get hits about the Queen looking pretty in pink, Pink Floyd at the opening ceremonies, and last by not least, athletes peeing in pink on account of beetroot juice, bicarbonate of soda, and caffeine.

All that aside, in my research I learned that pink is the it color because pink is vibrant, and about excitement, and getting the blood pressure up. But unlike red, in a non-offensive way.

If you look, you will see pink everywhere. It’s on the rowers’ oars and even on the water polo ball. Pink is said to promote friendship, is a sign of hope, and the color for breast cancer awareness.

It will help all athletes get in touch with their feminine side. Just what we need at the Olympics. It’s also the color of flamingos, Easter eggs, and I’m sure you can come up with a few other things…

It is perhaps, a little jarring, but nonetheless…Pink. Pink. What’s wrong with pink? It’s growing on me. It’s, uh, memorable.

I didn’t want to search too much as I did come across more results. Argh!

It’s impossible to keep up with all the Olympics. I’m not even going to try. That said, I’ve watched more TV in the past day and a half than I have for the last six months. I’m even enjoying the athletic commercials and think they’re even better than the Superbowl.

I thought it wouldn’t hurt to give my rundown, lest you missed it.

Upon watching the women’s gymnastics, I learned that the Australians are going for a 6th place overall, just like in the last Olympic games. This is what I love about the Olympics. For them, that would be their gold medal and they’re pulling as a team to get it. I enjoyed watching the Australians along with the Italians, two countries I rarely see perform.

“Was that a step or a stick?”

“Oh, definitely, a step,” announces the commentator.

On the technical side, I learned that if a step is less than shoulder width apart it’s a tenth deduction. If it’s more than shoulder width, that’s three tenths deduction.

But, what’s with this scoring anyway? Where’s the perfect 10? It’s hard to get excited when I have absolutely no inkling as to what this scoring means, except that ….

Just had to turn the news reporting Olympics results.

Where was I?….Oh yes, this scoring. All I know, is that not all apparatus is scored evenly. And, you can get more points for degrees of difficulty. I miss the perfect 10, I do. But, I understand the sport has changed since the perfect 10, so the scoring must follow.  I know this scoring isn’t new. I didn’t get it last time either. Or, maybe each apparatus is scored evenly. If someone, please tell me.

In Men’s Water Polo, the US played Montenegro. I didn’t know that many of the Americans actually play professional water polo in Europe and that most took a year off to train for the Olympics. Likewise, the Montenegran coach once played water polo for California State Long Beach.

I’m guessing many of these guys know each other pretty well, although you wouldn’t think that when you watched them. It’s quite an aggressive sport, and we only see half of it as we have no idea what shenanigans go on beneath.

On top, it’s a bit distracting watching all the chiseled bodies and their different colored caps. I’m doing my best. That, and the little white robes they wear to keep warm.  It’s especially pleasant when they all stand together and cheer. Oh, dear, I guess I’m getting distracted.

Back to the game. It was a one-goal game with two minutes remaining, score 7  (USA) to 6  (Montenegro). With 57 seconds left, the US scores. Then at the 46 second mark, it’s Montenegro with a score. The score is now 8-7 and Montenegro calls a time out with 17 seconds to go. No score. Win goes to the US.

Next water polo game is US-Hungry or is it Romania. I’m not sure. And, I’m not checking either. I can’t risk the possibility of any more spoilers.

Signing out Pacific Standard Time.


Olympic Fever, Pacific Standard Time

Fencers, McGill University, Montreal, 1925. Source.

I have Olympic fever. I get it every time. I guess I’m not watching any news for the next two weeks. I don’t want any results ahead of time, so I’m not talking to anyone about the Olympics. I don’t want any spoilers. It’s the only way. With an eight-hour time difference between London and California, it’s tricky.

I just finished watching Michael Phelps qualify, and within the hour a friend told me he didn’t even place in the final round. I was planning on watching that later tonight! Oh well. I hope I didn’t spoil anything for you.

I so enjoy watching the Olympics, particularly the drama of the gymnastics. I understand a current issue is the choice of pink for a background color. I’m not sure if it’s the mats or the siding. I hear it’s distracting for the gymnasts. I don’t blame them as it is a bit hard on the eyes as a TV watcher. I saw it when I watched the badminton.

I was a gymnast in my youth and the most we could muster was a forward roll on the balance beam. The tricks they do now demand super-human strength and finesse. No special effects required here.

I am looking forward to the diving, swimming, water polo, soccer (or football I should say) and the track and field to be sure. The Olympics also provides a look at other sports you may never watch anywhere else, unless you know someone who does the sport and, perhaps, attend the event personally. Many of these sports are simply not televised.

No matter what the sport, all of it is intense. For example, I have never seen such an intense game of table tennis in my life. I’m sure I couldn’t even return a serve if I were to play any of these Olympians. And, the sweat dripping from their faces, the coaches watching on the side, a stone-faced expression, or a sudden wincing, downward stare. Ah, the pressure.

The other sport I caught was fencing. I will now report on old news, because by now I’m sure you’ve already seen this, or the gold medal has already been awarded. No matter. I watched the Women’s Individual Foil event in fencing. In case you didn’t know, I learned that in the Foil, it’s only the tip that can touch your opponent. In the Sabre event, the whole sword, including the tip, can touch your opponent. The Foil involves the upper torso, but not the arms.

While watching, my son asks, “Is this sword fighting? Can you make money off this? It looks easy? Oh, are they doing it blind? Can they not see?”

Oh, they can see, and I bet it’s every bit as psychological as physical. I watched Di Francesca (#3 rank) from Italy and Nam (#2 rank) from South Korea. Nam was the silver medalist in Beijing in the last Olympic games. Between points, the women would often take their helmets off to look their opponent in the eye or wipe the sweat from their face, or perhaps argue a point with the referee. And when they win a point, their helmets blink red lights.

But this is the intense thing. Di Francesca came from behind, gaining the last five of the six points, to bring the overall score to a tie. So, they have one minute to play and the first touch wins. But previous to the final point being played, they toss a coin. If no one is able to score in the minute round, the person who wins the coin toss wins the match.

Could you imagine making it to the Olympics, making it that far, and losing to a coin toss?

I’m happy to report, in case you haven’t heard, that the match was not decided by a coin toss. Di Francesca touched her opponent within seconds. Riveting. Don’t tell me if she won the gold.