Monday, August 6, 2012

summer tranquility?

I’m glad the summer Olympic Games have been playing out over the past ten days. The Mets have once again been disappointing to watch, I’m not a Yankees fan and I’m grateful for an alternative to bumping up against some odd BBQ party chatter.

I suppose when the temperatures begin to rise my tolerance begins to wane for hearing assertions that various Southern latitudinal hotspots are cooler than New York. Florida, I was told, is cooler than New York as we stood outside in a New York backyard and I was fed the classic line-‘but everything is central air-conditioned where we live’…and I thought ‘apples and oranges, air-conditioning and garden patios, better not proceed.’

A few extra trips to the punch bowl helped me put the lid on the crankiness I was brewing when trying to explain that inserting the Romney of Massachusetts near universal health care in place of the Obama of National near universal health care is about as disingenuous as it is risky.

Global warming, climate change and glacial melting are subjects that now seem to be more popularly taught by fire pit pundits than science professors and I need to buy two drinks for those conversations. One beverage is for consumption and the other is for donation to the scorched corn fields in the Midwest.

And rounding the buffet, I have been served virtually the same number of hamburgers as there have been mass shootings.

But against all that comes the recent backdrop of 17 year old Missy Franklin and her gold medals. Her humble enthusiasm, down to earth charm and passion for swimming has been a delight to watch.

Of course I have watched Michael Phelps too. I often have thought Phelps seems a bit aloof. But personalities aside, and given that I can be a bit aloof as well, he deserves mountains of respect when he shows up poolside carrying 22 medals in his bag.

I enjoy watching gymnastics. But maybe some of the athletes and their parents should go to the pool and take a swim to calm down before their events. The contrast is tremendous. Parents at the pool sit relaxed in the arena, they smile and raise their hands to cheer. In the gym, they cover their eyes, bite their nails, hold their chests, pull on each other’s clothes, brush people aside, and run amuck in the aisles. It is entertaining footage from my couch though.

The divers, especially when synchronized, display machine-like precision. Watching long enough, however, did expose me to the humanness of a near belly-flop and I turned the dial.

I have enjoyed watching 15 year old Katie Ledecky and her 800 meters of wire to wire gold, Jessica Ennis handily winning the Olympic heptathlon, Yannick Agnel and his blistering free style speed, and the cartoon-like velocity of the 100 meter sprints.

Thankfully, there is still some summer left. I plan to retrieve my flip-flops for traversing the sand, dust off my boogie board to dodge some waves, gather my golf clubs to relieve some stress and a grab a pencil and paper to write in Missy Franklin for President.

© 2012 Christopher’s Views