With the Olympics approaching in a couple of weeks, I think it is normal with the male of our species (homo-couchitus) to contemplate just what event he would enter if he were called upon to represent the United States in this upcoming international competition to be held in Greece.
With me it is especially rough to decide what I would do if I were to go. After all, my fame as an athlete is well known (my wife just walked by and mumbled the word “infamous” – I’m sure she meant “famous” but is just unfamiliar with the subtleties of difference in the definitions, although that is surprising since she is an English teacher). Still it bothers me. What event would I be best doing?
I had a very good friend who thought I would be very good in Greece this summer. Then I found out she was suggesting I get out of journalism and become a fry cook. Apparently, she meant grease, not Greece.
I have to admit that I can immediately eliminate a couple of events from my competitive repertoire. For instance, the marathon. I mean, that race is 26.2 miles long! My pickup won’t even go that far. There is no way I am going to run that.
When I was in high school, I am proud to say I was on the track team, but I must admit that I was not exactly stellar. My coach claimed he timed me with a sun dial rather than a stop watch. He actually suggested that if I got any slower, he would have to time me with a calendar. So probably I shouldn’t seriously contemplate track at the ‘04 games.
Still, there are always the field events in the realm of track and field, and while I was a touch better in the field than on the track, I used to get some razzing about that too. For example, my coach suggested I try for the position of javelin and shot put catcher. He said there was less competition for those spots on the team and I might be able to get one of the slots. I’m not sure, but I think I have figured out why.
My wife suggested that I possibly look into my strengths before choosing an event. So naturally I said to myself, “TV (I figure if anyone has the right to call me by my first name, it is me), you grew up in the rural West on ranches and such. What are you completely familiar with?” And since they don’t have any event in the Olympics that deals with driving pickups with leaky oil pumps, I am forced to look at the equestrian and shooting events.
When my wife heard I was thinking about taking part in equestrian portion of the games, she asked if I were certain.
“I didn’t even know they had an event for falling out of the saddle while asleep,” she said smirking. “Oh, you’re not going for that? So are you going for forgetting to tighten the cinch strap? or is it dallying your thumb to the saddle horn?”
I just glared. After all, I don’t do those things more than, I don’t know… once a day…usually.
Which took me to the shooting events. I have been shooting since I was a young boy and honestly, I am quite proud of my prowess with firearms. So I went out to the local shooting range and I happened to notice the chief of police watching me from behind a bolder. So I asked him what he thought of my shooting ability. “Well,” he said glancing at my rifle to be certain it really was a firearm. “Let me put it this way, If you were Lee Harvey Oswald, John Kennedy would probably be alive today, but a lot of innocent people in Dallas would be dead.”