[Valid Atom 1.0] BarbaraEllen: Essay. I Love the Olympics & Sometimes they Make me Hate Myself?

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Essay. I Love the Olympics & Sometimes they Make me Hate Myself?

 .work hard, win. best score, wins. train right, win.

* * *

It's the ultimate maxim played out by statuesque figurines in striped, plastered, & engineered power suits. 

.This Will Make Sense.
.Read On.

Almost Hunger Games-esque. Taking a cynical stance on nationalistic competition for one moment, The Olympics preach meritocracy in a similar

 way the game of life, quite literally, in the worshiped trilogy turned movie empire, propagandizes patriotism. In our games, with the reporters & the cameras & the stories & the montages: what you set your mind to, you get. Those who lose, fall-short, get hurt? Swept under the rug, lay-in-wait for the next, smile & make an exit. Or in the literary, where loss literally means death, The Capitol garners support--or means to--with flourishes of fancy & gimmicks galore: it's The Capitol (at least in the first, the first & probably last I'll read) which creates calamity for contestants by dramatizing support or galvanizing loss in a game where winning's glory goes beyond gold & loss, means life no longer. Of course the parallel here isn't between the games, one celebratory of humanity & ...is real, the other destructive to humanity & fiction, as it is the allegory between manipulative governments and (perhaps more so) manipulative media. But enough about that.

* * *

.Let's discuss measures of happiness.

What the hell sort of happy does it feel like to land a perfect-closest-thing-to-10 the final run during a floor routine? Or to make it last off the blocks & first, by .10000 second, to the wall, in the water? 

What is it to wake-up every day of every morning & say, I'm going to do this. I'm going to make this happen, and then, when you push through every practice you want to erase & you pick yourself up after each shame-searing fall & make those mental scars a protective shield, to get the results you've tasted, craved, breathed, lived?

...Like giving birth to a child? I don't know. I mean, it has to be pretty damn exhilarating.

.Let's discuss measures of fairness.

Can I race someone for a job? Or maybe speed-type them? What about juggle-a-soccer-ball them? I mean, really, can I get an objective measurement: you finish first, you score the highest; you get the job. Heck, I'll take winnings just for the interview-of-it. Look at my resume, draw some hop-scotch lines (already got the chalk), give me a rock, & let me go. Promise I'll put the most powerful hop to that scotch & bring home the goods. If I lose, it's clean & it's clean & ... it's under control? ....Get a better rock, clearly and.... I'll know what to do better next time 'round.

But wouldn't you agree that the Olympics are bit misleading, these days, on the way the world works? First of all, no one watches NBC that much anymore. (I'm kidding. I've no idea. But it sounded witty, & SNL certianly isn't helping any. Boom. Token SNL dig.) Secondly, when was the last time anyone in real life won consistently based off of true merit? Or maybe that's just it: these days, the purest measurement of merit are left to athletic competitions (like the X-Games ... Real World/Road Rules Challenge: The Duel not included) & award shows.

.Let's discuss when you lose.

Cry. Take a Xanax. Fall asleep. Wake up. Cry some more. Have some pancakes & maple syrup & bacon or Canadian sausage, depending on what Olympic's McDonald's serves that morning ... & because you have the metabolism for it. Nice glass of OJ. Like normal, but not.

You get over it, & you move on. Probably to that regular career you've kept in the back pocket, or you begin focusing on the next 4 years & all the world competitions that come between. ...Head to the Today Show. Endorse something, 5 Hour Energy, I don't know. But, like anyone else, you deal. Because that's. Real. Life.

* * *
I just want to remember that feeling. Where when you work hard & when you work for what you want--and you really, really, really work hard & you really, really, really want it, & you really, really, really learn your lessons--I want to remember what it feels like to get it. Like the Olympian who finishes her trial, turns to the stands, & can't hear the applause. Because she knows she deserves it, & that's it.

And I want:
& butterflies,
& hugs,
& unicorns

No comments:

Post a Comment

Not your typical BarbaraEllen ... but still be constructive. Creative also welcome! xo.