I, like so many of you, have entered into a period of heavy television viewing as the Olympics are going on. Let's call it...entering the confinement. Every morning I seem to wake in a groggy haze of Olympics Hangover, having stayed up beyond reasonable bedtimes in order to further glut myself. It's pretty fun.
I have to share that I think this love for the Olympics stems from long ago, exactly 24 years ago, to be exact. That would be the summer that my family moved to the great city of salt. Actually, that would be the summer that my father already had moved, in order to start his new job, while my mom stayed behind in Boulder, CO, desperately trying to sell the house and keep the kids busy. My sister spent most of her time in SLC with my dad, but those two weeks she was home with us. There wasn't much left in our big house - all the furniture had been packed away. But there was a television on the living room floor that we gathered around, flopped on our stomachs with our chins in our hands, cheering for every athlete from the USA we saw. I remember watching Rowdy Gains swim. I remember watching Greg Louganis dive. I remember even getting all excited about the rowing. (Not that there's anything wrong with rowing, I had just never cared about it before.) But of course the most memorable events, those during which I remember screaming and jumping up and down like crazy, were the gymnastics - men's team gold (I'll always love you, Peter Vidmar,) and then that crazy Mary Lou Retton and her 2 (count 'em, 2!) perfect 10 vaults, crushing the hopes of the little red-headed Romanian she was competing against. I always felt sorry for her. But as Margaret and I were screaming our heads off and jumping in circles, close to tears over the victory, my life-long love of the Olympic Games was firmly established.