It’s my favorite time of year. Or, should I say, four years.
The summer Olympics are right around the corner, and I already can’t seem to pull myself away from the TV. Every night for the last few weeks I have faithfully sat down to watch the Olympic trials, and I’m pleased to say I’m not disappointed. Every athlete I’ve seen looks fantastic, and I can’t wait to see how Team USA looks in London.
I’m one of those crazies that watches as much Olympic coverage as I can get my hands on. Women’s gymnastics? It’s a personal favorite, so you can bet I scheduled my night around watching it. Men’s swimming? Obviously. Badminton, trampolining or the modern pentathlon? I mean, sure, might as well.
But as much as I love watching the amazing athletic skills that the Olympics offer, what I love even more is the atmosphere, the feeling surrounding the Olympic Games. It’s a feeling of hope, optimism, and pride that cynics and realists like myself rarely experience in life.
At risk of sounding cliché, these athletes represent the pride, hopes, and success of our country. In watching them, you forge this connection with them and with everyone who is cheering them on. You cease to become an individual watching the coverage and instead become a part of something bigger.
I’ll never forget during the Beijing Olympics in 2008 when the U.S. Men’s 4×100 Freestyle Relay team beat out the French for the Gold. I remember being gathered around the TV, cheering for Team USA, who was expected to get Silver, and then being absolutely elated when we witnessed one of the most amazing comebacks and wins in recent memory.
It’s moments like that which are why we love the Olympics, and why, come July 27th, I guarantee you will find me glued to my TV.