Patterico's Pontifications


Olympics Open Thread

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:47 am

I’m watching them for the first time in forever. What are your favorite moments from yesterday (or earlier)?

42 Responses to “Olympics Open Thread”

  1. The US Women’s Gymnastic Team victory last night.

    ropelight (3e9525)

  2. I thought the russian girls in particular were much more real live human-seeming than the american ones and plus they can actually dance for reals… the american dance elements all looked like they were inspired by factory robots

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  3. Agnell from France in the pool.
    Wiggins wins the TT
    I hate gymnastics

    JD (cfef43)

  4. I only watched the gymnastics cause of I was enjoying sitting on the couch with a baby puppy made out of german shepherd and lab and my niece person and I think also caramel rolls were involved – but that’s probably it for the olympics-watching this year since now I mostly need to focus on working off the aforementioned caramel rolls

    I also saw some cycling and was very very pleased to be able to tell my cousin what a peloton was – I learned that right here!

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  5. Kim Rhodes

    SPQR (6e06be)

  6. Did she really hit 99/100?

    JD (cfef43)

  7. JD, I can’t believe she missed one.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  8. Nada. Admiring the semi-nude girls makes me a pervert, I don’t like the boys, so I hide in shame.

    nk (875f57)

  9. I’ve been told at 12:30 EDT the men’s epee semi-final will be on with an American, and about an hour later the women’s semi-final saber with Zagunis.

    epee is the easiet to watch, whole body is the target, every touch counts, even if both at the same time

    saber, people slash, scream and both act like they scored the point to influence the judges, and unless you fence saber or watch a lot of it, you clap at the end when they tell you who won, until then one has little clue (in both saber and foil the judging includes a subtle thing, somewhat subjective, called “right of way”, basically you have to defend any action from your opponent before you start your attack. In saber, especially, it often looks like both started at the same time and you don’t know why the judges score it like they do.)

    Epee is intended to approximate a traditional dual, where simply drawing blood can count to uphold one’s honor, hence even a toe counts.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  10. I’m with nk, the girl’s gymnastics is a pedophile festival. I avoid.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  11. My favorite from earlier was Mary Lou Retton winning the gold in gymnastics.

    Oh — you didn’t mean that much earlier?

    Beldar (8554bf)

  12. Swimming by far. Wish they would hold the camera underwater longer to get better view of the quality of the stroke and the turns.

    Get rid of the athlete interviews – just show the events.

    Volleyball a close second for sports to watch.

    A little biased in those sports since I played/swam both sports.

    Gymnastics is very tough sport – though dont enjoy watching a sport where judging can be so subjective – how can you judge who really won

    Joe (a00dc1)

  13. Bela Karolyi is a great interview. He said the little US girl’s vault last night, Mackayla, was the single best vault he had ever seen.

    JD (cfef43)

  14. I always thought there was something wrong about girl’s gymnastics in making it both an athletic competition plus having to have make up on, even sparkling thingies in their hair (wife and daughter watch it).

    Well, I don’t know if anyone saw the epee bout on some channel. I was stuck seeing by how big a margin US swimmers were qualifying for the semi-final events…. ๐Ÿ™

    It seems from what I can figure looking at the score it was tied after regulation time and after OT and Kelsey the American lost by his opponent having priority.


    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  15. they all have these weird shiny blue smurf butts

    happyfeet (3c92a1)

  16. Water polo players are serious badasses.

    JD (cfef43)

  17. I liked the part when Gabby Douglas left the mat, went out to get a Cappuccino, came back and lost fewer points than her teammate (who’d done a much better routine, in my opinion).

    Joe Miller (00407a)

  18. Did Gabby lose fewer points, or just have a higher score because her routine had a higher possible total to start with? I thought it was the latter, but could be wrong, it’s not like they put all of that information in a table format to review.

    Just like they don’t put fencing on tv in any format to view.

    I mean, really, how many backstrokes do you need to see to say, hey, neat, a backstroke, and he’s going to qualify, like we all knew he would, unless they released that shark off of Cape Cod into the pool (not wise, the chlorine stings their eyes then they get really mad).

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  19. Women’s skeet finals, Kim Rhode is fantastic and looks so low-key. I was very impressed. Also, men’s skeet finals, Vincent Hancock is an incredible shotgunner and there was a very intense bronze shootoff.

    WeekendAtBernankes (5634e8)

  20. Agreed, the shooting and archery have been great this time around. The first team archery round with the South Koreans was my oldest son’s introduction to the sport and as I recall one of the South Korean team’s very first shots was 0.5cm from dead center.

    The vault fills me with terror but Maroney absolutely destroyed it last night. Karolyi ought to know, but it sure was the best vault I’d ever seen.

    DrSteve (168b8a)

  21. Here is a bone I have to pick with the Olympics: When you hear the old cliche that “these are the best athletes in the world,” it isn’t always true. In swimming, for instance, no country can send in more than two individuals per event. It is quite possible that there are instances where the third-place finisher at the U.S. Olympic Trials — or the Australian, Chinese, French, Dutch, or South African Trials — might have a chance to medal. They should allow the Top 16 ranked athletes in every event to compete regardless of what country they represent, then enforce the two entries per country limit only after that.

    JVW (c64522)

  22. I have always been simply amazed at what these folks can make their bodies do. I like to see the U.S. win, of course, but I watch mostly for the sheer amazement of it all. It’s akin to appreciating a virtuoso’s skill on piano/violin/banjo(!), you watch in utter, bumptuous pride at being human. They represent the best that we can be at (fill in the blank) and no other animal on earth can do so in a way which does not relate to their survival. Even, Patrick, if scoring is subjective and often unfair, it’s the human spirit of pushing to the edge, often pushing it back some, even if that means the occasional, spectacular failure. Reach beyond the grasp, and all that… Corny? Ok, guilty. Sentence me to life (harhar).

    Chris (f379a3)

  23. My favorite part isn’t the part where the USA taxes the medals themselves that our athletes have won.

    That part is a disgrace.

    Dustin (73fead)

  24. Meredith Viera now looks like a social xray.

    PC14 (87cbf8)

  25. Comment by Beldar โ€” 8/1/2012 @ 9:47 am

    That was so 28 seconds years ago.

    AD-RtR/OS! (b8ab92)

  26. Amen, Dustin. Amen.

    And JVW as well. There were events in swimming where the 4th and 5th place swimmers in the Olympic trials would have been in medal contention at the Olympics.

    JD (cfef43)

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    hiphop (68180d)

  28. Serious answer: Judo! I love it and I’m glad to see it on TV, no matter which match.

    Fake answer: Boob shot when NBC tried out live coverage on the US v Spain women’s water polo event this year.

    bonhomme (e4db21)

  29. I can’t figure out what the purpose isof the Chinese spam farmer comments we see.

    SPQR (b93549)

  30. The girls beating the chi com volleyball team.

    mg (44de53)

  31. Comment by SPQR โ€” 8/1/2012 @ 1:09 pm

    I asked that before, SPQR, and the only reply I received was some snarky comment about “laquered jungle kitties” from Icy ๐Ÿ˜‰

    For years I have often received spam email in Chinese as well. the first time it happened i took some of it to a friend who spoke chinese, she said it didn’t make a lot of sense. i said it was greek to me…

    As long as it is not testing out the capacity of the web somehow in preparation for one whopper of a cyber attack.

    FWIW, kelsey in men’s epee’ and Zagunis in women’s sabre both lost in the semi-finals to the eventual gold medal winner, and then each lost again in their bronze medal bouts. Fourth place is a disappointment being so close but thing to be proud of for Kelsey, as two time defending gold medal it had to have been much harder for Zagunis, I guess maybe.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  32. The last girl in the American women’s gymnastics team performed a stunning floor exercise and began crying as soon as she finished it. When they announced her score it meant they had won. Pretty awesome.

    Also, probably the event in men’s gymnastics that amazes me most is the rings. There was one guy who did a move that I think may have violated the laws of physics.

    The swimming is great to watch, especially with the underwater and slow motion cameras. It lets you see how incredibly, insanely athletic these people are.

    Jim S. (ca102a)

  33. I find the swimming interesting in that it seems most of the swimmers have the same tempo for their strokes, it’s just some get more out of each stroke than others.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  34. If you ever want to get an idea of how athletic the swimmers are, go try swimming a 100m all out sprint, try 50m of butterfly, or a 200m and 400m individual medley.

    JD (cfef43)

  35. I just try to stay afloat – that’s exhausting!

    AD-RtR/OS! (b8ab92)

  36. The jogging fat kid commercial from Nike strikes me as — well — a bit odd.

    JVW (edec8d)

  37. I am personally boycotting watching any of the Chinese gymnasts. Their relentless drive to be the best, no matter the cost and no matter the sorrow, disgusts me.

    Dana (292dcf)

  38. The 200m fly is insanely hard.

    Dana – I cannot stand gymnastics, in general.

    JD (318f81)

  39. If you ever want to get an idea of how athletic the swimmers are, go try swimming a 100m all out sprint, try 50m of butterfly, or a 200m and 400m individual medley.
    Comment by JD โ€” 8/1/2012 @ 2:36 pm

    This is the second time* you have suggested that I do something that would have disastrous consequences. If I did as you suggested, I would die, whether from a heart attack, drowning, vomiting and aspirating, or some combo of the above. I was just noting how faster swimmers don’t necessarily have a faster stroke rate.
    I have discovered that instead of saying that I “frog paddle”, I can say that I swim a “modified breast stroke”- no head in the water.

    *I forget what the first one was.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  40. Comment by JD โ€” 8/1/2012 @ 7:04 pm

    Wow. I knew that Stephanie Rice and Frederica Pelligrini (sp?) were pleasant to look at, but she takes it to a whole new level. I note too that she is a side-breather in butterfly. No real meaning there, just an observation.

    JVW (edec8d)

  41. The best part for me was that the announcers never mentioned the race of our gymnastics teams.

    Are they finally over it? The U.S. pretty much is.

    Patricia (e1d89d)

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