What do the judges say?

OK, I’m just going to say it: Synchronized diving, while an impressive display, is not a sport. It’s a stunt. An awful lot of the competitions we’ll be seeing in the next two weeks aren’t sports. But what the hell, let’s watch ’em.

As a former equestrian, I’m sensitive to this charge. “You ride a horse? Oh wow, I bet that’s really hard — for the horse.” My reply was always that if golf is a sport, then riding is, too. And for the next two weeks, the Obscure Sport/Stunt Color Commentators Union will see full employment, and we’ll get to repeat their lines at work: “As usual, the Chinese set the standard for synchronized diving.” Try it out.

Diving is a sport, I should add. Surely, synchronizing with another diver is an added skill. But honestly, after watching for a while, I think it’s all about another opportunity to show beautiful bodies in bathing suits.

How was your weekend? Mine was fine. Sailing, cooking, shopping — basically the perfect summer trifecta, made even better by the fact all the shopping was for Kate, and I didn’t wave to face a fitting-room mirror. We went to Forever 21, one of the higher circles of hell. All I can do, shopping there, is think of how wretched the lives are of the people who sew this shit. How is it possible to grow the cotton, harvest the cotton, process the cotton, dye and loom the cotton, cut it, sew it, blah blah blah until this row of tank tops hangs on a rack in Troy, Michigan, priced at 2 for $8? But it’s undeniably a good place to buy cheap dresses for a teenager, so here we are, and here I am on an ottoman in the fitting-room area, and a girl across the row steps out in a dress that is the full trifecta of sluttyville — short, tight and low-cut. What’s worse, it’s sort of shirred, too, and the seam cleaves the crack of her ass. She looks at the mirror, and seems to be trying to make up her mind.

Her friend steps out of the adjacent fitting room. “Oh. My. God. That is so awesome. You look so hawt.” I’m thinking, nope, what you need is a nice sheath in a non-stretchy fabric. Something that skims the body, but doesn’t hug it like a drowning swimmer. Raise the neckline two inches — a scoop, not a plunge — and I’ll give you the mid-thigh hemline. Then you’ll look like a pretty lady and not Tatiana Petrovna, Russian prostitute.

She went back into the room, and emerged a few minutes later with a hot pink tight/shirred/short/STRAPLESS number, which was even worse. Her friend agreed THIS was the dress.

I guess she had a date for a sex party or something.

Kate got two dresses that were sorta Betty Draper-ish. Plus some fierce boots from Nordstrom’s anniversary sale, and a new pair of skinny jeans. I think we’re done for a while.

Back to the Olympics.

But first, some bloggage? Sure.

When it gets very hot in the Carolinas, our Coozledad finds little reward in farm work, which is good for us, because he blogs instead.

A very very long read from Outside. I opened the print window — it was broken into so many takes I got tired of clicking through — and lost the original story. But it’s a great story, about a veteran who walked into the Bob Marshall Winderness and hasn’t been seen since.

And while it’s wrong to laugh at children, someone obviously needs to point this girl in a new direction, and maybe this will be the turning point.

The week awaits! Let’s make it a good one.

Posted at 5:48 am in Current events, Same ol' same ol' |

58 responses to “What do the judges say?”

  1. beb said on July 30, 2012 at 7:32 am

    Our weekend was a rage, frustration and pleasure. Rage that the new refrigerator we’d ordered wasn’t delivered on Friday as promised, frustration as it turns out the new delivery date is Tuesday!, capped by a pleasant walk out at the newly renamed Lake St. Clair Metropark. I prefer the old name Metro Beach. There was a fishing competition going on that day. When we had reached the point next to the boat launch canal we watched as boat after bass boat, after bass boat came in. I didn’t there could be so many bass boats in one area.

    “Synchronized diving”? I think Nancy has it right, just another excuse to show people in bathing suits.

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  2. Dorothy said on July 30, 2012 at 9:43 am

    Could NOT get past 1:16 of that girl singing. I hate to think of her feelings being hurt, but better now than after she gets all high and mighty about her perceived talent.

    We moved our son and his fiance into their new 2 BR apartment in Grove City on Saturday. They are getting married next June and at some point they hope to buy a house. I hope that will be the last move we have to participate in for quite some time. We are getting too old for this shit! (In fairness, the young ones did most of the lifting and running up and down the stairs. We helped, but not to the extent we used to.)

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  3. Dexter said on July 30, 2012 at 9:46 am

    OMG ! I need a double shot! Make it Jose Feliciano with a Jimi Hendrix back. And as Clarence the Angel said, “Be lively!”
    This girl is so horribly bad , I actually started LOL-ing and bashing my forehead with my hand. And unlike Maggie Jordan of “The Newsroom”, I know that LOL does not stand for “lots of love”, which she inscribed on her boss’s friend’s funeral bouquet, thinking that LOL indeed means “lots of love”. That woman brings great comic relief to that show… gotta love her.
    Her real-life name is Alison Pil.

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  4. beb said on July 30, 2012 at 9:51 am

    Over the weekend I read two gobsmacking pieces by Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. In the first, here:

    Scalia argues that woman have no right contraception because it’s not mentioned in the Bill of Rights, none should they have any expectation of privacy because that was not an enumerated right, either.

    Then about two articles down he argues that indeed the Second Amendment gives someone the right to own a rocket grenade launcher. He also was still going on about how the Obamacare decision was all wrong. He’s beginning to sound that one of those crazy old uncles that people used to keep locked up in their attics.

    And for my second link, here’s an endorsement that I’m sure Romney wasn’t looking for:

    Porn’s most famous, enduring, ugliest man has declared that Romney is a “good man.” Is that with or without Ron Jeremy’s patented penis extension technique?

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  5. coozledad said on July 30, 2012 at 9:53 am

    That story from Outside reminded me of what a kid about Noah’s age told us about serving in Iraq. That hell isn’t going to stay put.
    And the members of the Bush administration have yet to go bury themselves up to the neck in a slit trench for penance. They haven’t even stopped licking their own balls.

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  6. Bitter Scribe said on July 30, 2012 at 10:26 am

    Obscure sports—or at least, obscure to me—are the biggest attraction of the Olympics. They’re a great break from the nothing-but-baseball dog days, and they’re consistently full of surprises. Ever see world-class badminton players go at it? It’s nothing like the picnic game we’re all used to.

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  7. Deborah said on July 30, 2012 at 10:52 am

    The Gawker link to the article the young “singer” should be pointed to was hilarious. I highly recommend it http://deadspin.com/5928720/whats-it-like-to-sing-the-anthem-at-a-baseball-game-the-story-of-one-mans-perilous-fight

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  8. Sue said on July 30, 2012 at 11:08 am

    I had a nice weekend. A garden tour of Shorewood, including two little shacks on Lake Michigan, followed by a nice lunch at Beans & Barley in Milwaukee.
    Sunday was nice so for the first time since early June we worked in the yard. Nothing strenuous, made sure we took lots of breaks as the day got warmer, and ended the day feeling good but a bit sore. And then I got up at 3 a.m. and took a muscle relaxant and am now in a full-blown back episode, sitting very straight in a straight chair.
    Those muscle relaxants are very nice…
    But I think there’s something wrong with this keyboard. The keys are sticking or they’ve moved or something because every third word spells itself wrong.

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  9. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 11:12 am

    There’s an actress named after Johnny Rotten’s last band? Who knew?

    Peter King, in his column today on SI.com says that Tom Benson, owner of the NFL Saints is trying to buy the Times-Picayune to prevent the cutback to three days/week. Now that’s a civic-minded sports owner. King also calls out Carolina Panthers WR Steve Smith, well known to sports comment board racists as a thug, mainly for breaking a teammates jaw in a training camp brawl, for donating $100grand towards the hospital bills for the Aurora shooting victims. Smith said:

    As a father and husband, I cannot imagine the pain and suffering the victims are going through. I hope this contribution might assist in paying some of the medical bills that will help allow these families to move forward in this tragic circumstance.

    My kind of thug. I read sports article comment boards frequently, and I can say honestly, I have never seen a white football player described as a thug. As an ex-diver, I can enjoy the syncro, but they have done something unrecognizable with degree of difficulty which in diving is as straightforward as it is fracking obscure in gymnastics. When I see two teams get a 3.0 multiplier for an inward 2-1/2 pike and a forward single twisting 1-1/2 it bugs the fracking shite out of me. No way in the world are those two dives equally difficult. I’m 61, and a can still do a single twister off a decent board. I wouldn’t try an inward 2-1/2 with an Uzi at my head. Although I stick to 1m boards these days. Water is hard as a rock when you land wrong from a great height.

    RMoney gives the impression of having an “innie” for a dick.

    If Scalia’s right about the vast menu of 2nd Amendment approved weapons, I want a working Sherman tank like James Garner had in Tank (I’d like Lori Petty to drive it, please):


    Take that you cheap redneck tricks.

    Given the Byzantine architecture of the US Tax Code, there is probably some porno tax break (or tax expenditure like Big Oil gets) Ron Jeremy is counting on Willie to protect.

    We saw whitewater canoeing last night. I’d love to have a go at that course. Much fun. And Niger exports more than yellowcake:


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  10. LAMary said on July 30, 2012 at 11:20 am

    I watched men’s beach volleyball on Saturday and I developed a real dislike for one of the Canadian players. He had a fake tan, tucked his tank top into his shorts, and had douchey sunglasses. He also wore a karate kid style headband with a maple leaf on the front.

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  11. Icarus said on July 30, 2012 at 11:22 am

    good writing, Coozledad. You have a way with imagery and words that I can only aspire to someday.

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  12. basset said on July 30, 2012 at 11:26 am

    I believe modern pentathlon is coming up next Saturday… had never even heard of it before they started talking about eliminating it.

    The original storyline is apparently that each competitor is a cavalryman making his escape from enemy territory… they run, swim, shoot, fence, and ride unfamiliar horses.

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  13. nancy said on July 30, 2012 at 11:29 am

    I have long believed that the central tragedy in my life is my failure to train in modern pentathlon. I believe I’d have been a medalist for at least two olympiads.

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  14. Jolene said on July 30, 2012 at 11:40 am

    It could be that I lack a Y chromosome, but the appeal of some of the female Olympians escapes me–bathing suits notwithstanding. It takes a bit of body fat to give the female form allure, and these hardbodies simply don’t have any. Even the bathing suits–at least those worn in racing–are unappealing. There’s the appeal of youth and health, I guess, but that has its limits.

    That’s not to say that I’m not amazed by what they can do, but sexiness doesn’t seem (to me) to be a big part of it.

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  15. brian stouder said on July 30, 2012 at 11:47 am

    Took today off; read the long long long Outside story, and it is enthralling.

    The piece takes a look at the strange shadows cast by our recent history; and indeed, it highlights (among other things) that people like me – who have never been outside the United States, let alone as a uniformed member of the United States armed forces on some faraway, God-foresaken battlefield, simply don’t know (and cannot know) how strange things really are.

    Indeed, the Marine at the center of the story seems to be engaged in trying to understand what he’s seen and experienced, and what his duty is, and what is true in this world (as opposed to what is bullshit). I was especially struck by the ambiguous ‘happy’ fellow, the fellow Marine/man of faith guy (who reminded me of Jeff tmmo, really), who is back home again with the lovely family and the green lawn.

    Cooze makes the altogether fair point about the genuine guilt that our previous administration’s policy-makers should feel; they should at least drop the bombast (talking to you, Dick Cheney, and any Cheney daughter who goes on Fox News; and to every former Bush policy maker now connected with the Romney campaign) and think hard about what they really and truly are willing to unleash, with regard to Iran.

    “Pre-emptive” war is just a fancy new word for blitzkrieg; it’s the sort of thing that policy-makers for aggressors console themselves with.

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  16. Charlotte said on July 30, 2012 at 11:50 am

    Oy, the gymnastics. Those girls look like the most miserable creatures on earth. At least the swimmers have some joy.
    My favorite so far — the women’s cycling road race. Yikes! and in the rain! Also, have to say, I got sucked into the dressage. I grew up deep in the hunter/jumper world, but did “dressage” on camp horses as a kid. Those extended gaits were really lovely. However, I think the Olympics needs rodeo … team roping would certainly qualify as a skill-based sport.

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  17. adrianne said on July 30, 2012 at 12:03 pm

    Got my Olympic laugh of the day when I read that U.S. gymnast Jordyn Wieber’s coach calls it an “injustice” that she won’t compete in the all-around finals. An injustice? Some perspective here, please!

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  18. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    We also saw a team handball match between France and Norway. This game seems that it would be fun to play, but I am not sure I understand the rules on advancing the ball by running or when dribbling is required. I rooted for Norway (one grandparent of four, and there are not a lot of Irish participants). The game is a lot like water polo, but on a hard court like hoops, so there is no opportunity for all of the dirty underwater shenanigans that characterize water polo. Still, it was a women’s match and notable for serious contact with no pads or protection, rougher than real BB, much like the farce of international hoops, where ticky-tacky- fouls abound and mayhem is somehow officially ignored.

    I’m waiting for men’s shotput to show. Former UGA star thrower Reese Hoffa, who greatly resembles Dizzy Gillespie, has been around at the top of the shotput world for many years. Reese still lives and trains in Athens and is devoted a patron of the Taco Stan as my brothers and I are when we’re there. He is a hail fellow well-met guy, and instantly recognizable at about under 6 ft. and at least 320 lbs. Not too svelte but serious guns, and refreshingly scruffy, and lighter on his feet than Ann RMoney’s horse:


    He should be in movies. Speaking of movies, in what imaginary universe did somebody think a remake of Total Recall is a good idea. And how about full contact dressage? Personall, I can see the attraction, but dislike seeing animals trained to do unnatural things for the enjoyment of lesser creatures like humans. Like the bear called State O’ Maine riding a bicycle.

    The previous administration is still defending the efficacy and morality of torture, while they’ve forgotten all about the policy of “Shock and Awe” which probably killed 50 thou residents of Baghdad slums in the first three days of the illegal invasion. Hell, those monsters still claim it was a “just war” displaying their idiotic readiness to turn real, serious philosophical thought into a mindless shibboleth. Asshole war criminals.

    And I can’t watch women’s gymnastics as long as they let that pervert Bela Karolyi anywhere near those kids. And if all of the competitors are 15, I could wake up 30 tomorrow. The Chinese team got away with a bunch of 12 year ilds in Beijing, just adding to the sport’s travesty. International gymnastics is revolting to anybody that has seen the American college version, actual young women, student athletes with normal lives in their futures, who compete for the love of it.

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  19. Pam said on July 30, 2012 at 12:31 pm

    Not bragging, but spent the weekend doing neighborhood canvassing for the Obama campaign. Was up in 82 (as they say here, southern Delaware county), not 81 where I live (northern Franklin county). They are trying to find out, of the folks who voted for Obama last election, how many will vote for him again this year. My casual observation is that the people they need to worry about are white males, aged 35-45. My strong feeling is that some of the people in those neighborhoods were possibly under water on their houses. They were built about 8 – 10 years ago. Every ceiling is vaulted, every room is open concept and many houses are poorly maintained and already showing premature aging. These men are thinking “I should have moved up by now”. They all said that they are going to vote R because Mitt was a business man (yeah, right) or because Obama didn’t magically cure the economy in just 3 1/2 years (I got that a lot) or because they hate unions (even those who don’t deal with unions or union people ((yes, I asked))). My guess is that there was some sad event, like a job loss or pay downgrade, that leads to this thinking. Maybe life just got a little harder and they don’t like that. Happily, most of the folks who voted for Obama last time are voting for him again (at least in 82). It was interesting, many of the names on my list were young people who were away. Some of their parents just hung their heads, like they did a bad job raising them. Can’t believe my kid voted D. One man said, “Oh yes, that’s my daughter, she thinks she’s going to change the world!” Maybe she will. And I outed one woman. Her name was on my list and her husband INSISTED that she did not vote for Obama and never would. Snicker!! Thank goodness the voting booth is private.

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  20. Pam said on July 30, 2012 at 12:45 pm

    I liked watching the Men’s Gymnastics, especially how John Orozco’s mother hides her face in real agony when her son is up. Those poor parents! How much can they take? Prospero – I agree, Total Recall? It sucked. Every time someone was thrust outside, I tried to see if I could hold my breath at least until they exploded. When you have to entertain yourself in the middle of a movie, you have to ask why the movie isn’t doing it instead.

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  21. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    Good website for Olympics schedules:


    coozledad: Is there a Street of Crocodiles movie. I recently bought a volume of stories by Bruno Schulz with that title from the NYRB bookstore. They seem to specialize in whsat was considered good literary fiction in the middle of the 20th Century, and I’ve had some real surprises following their recommendations. For instance, I’d never heard of The Mangan Inheritance, by Brian Moore, and found it over-the -top enjoyable, on the lines of Amis pere, like Lucky Jim, my choice for funniest novel not written by Faye Weldon, Tom McGuane or Henry Fielding. Anyway, haven’t read Street of Crocodiles yet, but would love to see a movie after I do.

    Pam. The primary question about Total Recall is how is anybody put up that kind of cash to FUBAR Phillip K. Dick. So, if somebody was going to do a remake, hire Ridley Scott, you philistines.

    Orozco’s mom was funny to me. Like my own mammy when my brother and I were diving. I was doing a reverse dive layout once, and very close to the board coming down and heard her let out a shriek in the otherwise dead quiet pool. Miraculously I didn’t get hurt. When you mess up a reverse dive, you frequently hit the board headfirst. I’m ambivalent on all of the parent shots, thinking back to the 80s and Dr. Kiraly cheering on his boy Karch with his widdle Amewican flag. Lord that got old fast.

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  22. Dan B said on July 30, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    “How is it possible to grow the cotton, harvest the cotton, process the cotton, dye and loom the cotton, cut it, sew it, blah blah blah until this row of tank tops hangs on a rack in Troy, Michigan, priced at 2 for $8?”

    You’re right- you can’t do it without paying workers miserably low wages.

    I’ve seen a bunch of press about this new book:

    And the author’s basic rule of thumb is that there is no way for a dress that costs less than $20 to be made in an ethical and environmentally sustainable way.

    The answers I’ve seen her propose for consumption right now aren’t necessarily realistic, especially when you’re talking about teenagers (I am heartened that her main argument is mostly that changes have to happen at a systemic level). But I think her Pollan-esque rules are still worth keeping in mind: “Buy what you need, buy things that you love, and take care of what you own.”

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  23. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 2:04 pm

    Buy what you need, buy things that you love, and take care of what you own.

    Translation into RMoney: I hate business.

    Best headline in a long time:


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  24. coozledad said on July 30, 2012 at 2:04 pm

    Prospero: Stephen and Timothy Quay made a stop motion animation film based loosely on some of the ideas in Schultz’s book, very loosely on his final days, but primarily on the paragraph spoken over Lech Jankoski’s brilliant little folk tune at the end.

    “In that city of cheap human material, no instincts
    can flourish, no dark and unusual passions can be aroused.
    The Street of Crocodiles was a concession of our city to modernity and metropolitan
    corruption. Obviously, we were unable to afford anything better than a paper
    imitation, a montage of illustrations cut out from last year’s mouldering

    Their movie is a thing unto itself.

    I like their work, but it’s Lech that puts them over the top.

    Here’s a link to the first part of the movie:

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  25. jcburns said on July 30, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    My skills at Modern Dodecahedron will remain unrecognized until the world convinces the Olympic committee to establish this as an official event.

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  26. jcburns said on July 30, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    Jonah Lehrer of The New Yorker resigns after admitting that he made up quotes in his best-selling Dylan book. This, after getting into trouble for recycling content on The New Yorker site.

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  27. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 2:23 pm

    Thanks cooze. Ima read the story tonight and then watch the movie. I bought the book chiefly because of immediate fascination with the title. Your last film suggestion, Russian Ark, was very fine.

    Those lyrics sound like an epigram in a China Mievill book. They could have been written for Perdido Street Station. Fit Dark City pretty well too (a personal favorite).

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  28. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 2:25 pm

    The bigtime climate change denier on the Koch payroll says he’s been wrong all along, watming is real and people cause it:


    Read it and weep while you cry in your beer and listen to Wagner you Nazified creeps.

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  29. Danny said on July 30, 2012 at 2:35 pm

    My wife and I watched most of the women’s gymnastics last night. Some takeaways:

    1. Aly Riasman’s parents are hilarious and Robin caught a nice shot at the end of Aly’s mom dropping the F-bomb. Hilarious.


    2. I agree with whoever said that these girls are miserable. I feel bad for them though. Look at the way the scoring is these days. The floor exercises have become hurried jumbles of tumbling runs with brief, artless interludes of chaotic arm movements and wooden poses that are poor substitutes for dance elements.

    3. I do think that Jordyn got robbed. Not only were her scores deflated while the Russians were inflated, it is non-nonsensical that the 24 best women in the world will not be competing for the individual overall.

    I am looking forward to track, wrestling and rhythmic gymnastics. One of the kids I used to watch wrestle in high school is on the freestyle wrestling team. Jake Varner is his name. He was great to watch in high school, but wrestled a very boring and safe style in college to capture two NCAA titles. Hopefully he does not bore the international audience to death.

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  30. Danny said on July 30, 2012 at 2:37 pm

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  31. basset said on July 30, 2012 at 2:38 pm

    I’m a decent rifle shot but would be useless at the rest of the pentathlon. Been on a horse exactly once, at the fair when I was ten, didn’t like it and never tried again.

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  32. Danny said on July 30, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    Here is the video. Looks like the other site got it deleted.


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  33. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    I find Rhythmic Gymnastics amusing in a chortling way. It’s like something invented to warm up audiences for Penn & Teller or Siegfried & Roy. But I found out this morning there is men’s rhythmic gymnastics. I’m assuming Will Farrell and Ben Stiller are representing the USA. No thanks.

    Real women’s international gymnastics are too painful for me to watch aside from the SVU aspect Karolyi brings to it. I used to go to UGA meets frequently, when they were winning 10 NCAA championships (five straight). These were real college women who didn’t look like science experiments or stolen babies. To of the best were Leah Brown and Hope Spivey. Bothe were summa for four years in premed and I think both are doctors now. Hope was small like most gymnasts. Leah, on the other hand was 5-8 and built like Angela Basset. She had a huge student following and fan section at home meets. When the announcers were talking last night about height on the vault and floor, I thought about times I’d seen Leah Brown defy gravity. The joy for teammates never seemed de rigeur either. Those women were rowdy, raucous, and altogether joyous, and their coach was a long tall bottle redhead given to wearing leather minis and stiletto heels into combat. Here’s a photo of the 2008 NCAA champs, without a browbeaten little girl in the bunch:


    I liked that skeet shootin’ lady getting a medal in her fith Games in a row.

    Mention of wrestling reminds me of Rulon Gardner, who defeated the seemingly indomitable Russian Karelin in Greco-Roman. Gardner ended up on Biggest Loser at 400+.

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  34. Sherri said on July 30, 2012 at 3:53 pm

    I liked Kim Rhode, too. I think they should interview her instead of the gymnasts and the swimmers, none of whom have had anything interesting to say. Better yet, she can do gymnastics and swimming commentary; I’m sure she can say “huge” as well and as often as Rowdy can.

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  35. Bitter Scribe said on July 30, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    Prospero, just FYI: “real” gymnastics is technically called “artistic gymnastics” to distinguish it from rhythmic gymnastics, whose practitioners would probably take great umbrage at the suggestion that what they do is not “real.”

    Hope Solo, the U.S. women’s soccer goalkeeper, apparantly is calling out Brandi Chastain over TV commentary that Solo perceives as insufficiently respectful to the U.S. team. I don’t ordinarily side with athletes in these situations, but 1) I sympathize with goalkeepers–don’t ask me why (I never played soccer in any serious way), I just do, and 2) Solo is such an amazing-looking woman as well as an incredible athlete.

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  36. Dan B said on July 30, 2012 at 4:18 pm

    The thing about rhythmic gymnastics is that if you can look past the makeup and glitter, there is some really astonishing and beautiful athleticism there. It’s really remarkable what they can do.

    Men’s rhythmic gymnastics isn’t an Olympic sport. Apparently, it’s moves are drawn from martial arts.

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  37. Sherri said on July 30, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    Hope Solo is pretty much the definition of prickly, and I think she just needed someone to fight with. Better Brandi Chastain than her own teammates, with whom she’s had shaky relationships in the past…

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  38. Judybusy said on July 30, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    Danny, we saw the Raismans live (as it were) and assessed mom as being one of those rabid parents who strip away any joy from their kids’ lives to make sure they WIN. The commentator added that she was a high school gymnast, so we tacked on “living through her daughter” for good measure. She gave me the creeps, for sure.

    And wow, whoever is encouraging that Texas kid to sing in public is obviously tone-deaf. I think she eventually hit one note in tune, and this is from someone who knows her limits and does not inflict her singing voice anyone. Sheesh!

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  39. Suzanne said on July 30, 2012 at 5:27 pm

    Prospero, don’t bring Wagner into this. I like Wagner.

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  40. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 5:30 pm

    Scribe, I meant no disrespect. If somebody does something athletic I know I couldn’t do, that’s good enough. But “artistic” gymnastics has been gymnastics for a long time. In comparison, the rhythmic type looks like Mom & Me Gymboree or something. The use of inanimate objects that doesn’t involve projectiles seems silly. I think calling something gymnastics that doesn’t involve tumbling and extreme strength is a tad ridiculous.

    I’d take Chastain’s side parbly, because Solo was pretty classless in her war of words against her teammate, the great Briana Scurry. I saw Scurry play in a preliminary of the ’96 Olympics played in Sanford Stadium in Athens GA, against the Nigerian team, a fierce and lightning fast power at that time. Scurry was brilliant. Solo treated her elder condescendingly when Solo was second guessed after the World Cup loss to Japan, in which she did not play well, and her teammates completely shat the bed in a shootout.

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  41. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 5:44 pm

    Und Herr Wagner libet den Nazis. And Wagner’s music was used to coopt Scandinavian mythology to the glory of the Reich, thanks in large part to his own written imprecations against Jews that Hitler took to heart:


    Of course, all of that comes from Wagner’s operas, a form I don’t get at all.Screechy and strident to no apparent point.

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  42. LAMary said on July 30, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    The skeet shooting lady is getting a lot of coverage here since she’s local. They showed her practicing and she catches the spent shells before they hit the ground. She’s pretty down to earth amazing at the same time.

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  43. Suzanne said on July 30, 2012 at 6:15 pm

    I know Wagner was a disgusting, horrible person, but he wrote some nice music. And where would Bugs Bunny or Apocalypse Now be without him?

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  44. beb said on July 30, 2012 at 6:29 pm

    “You didn’t build it.” I consider Pres. Obama a gaffe prone speaker in much the way that John Kerry sunk his presidential ambitions by saying he was “against it before I was for it.” There was no way that make him sound like a flip-flopped. Obama’s comment is so opened ended that anyone can make of it whatever they want. Anyone except Gov. Romney. As this article explains, Romney’s/Bain’s fortune was made by exploiting government giveaways in the US tax code. The existence of Private Equity funds are based on the ability to lard up companies with debt while extracting wealth as dividends to the holding company. Fixing this one loop hole would do so much to shore up the economy in our country while eliminating waste that drains to the super-wealthy.

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  45. MichaelG said on July 30, 2012 at 7:08 pm

    I too was struck by how joyless and tense the women’s gymnastics competitors were last night. Those perfunctory little hugs and air kisses. None of them talking to another one. And they all look like a bunch of little meat balls. I don’t know if they’re born that way or if years of practicing gymnastics from the prenatal state causes that.

    I do understand that the kid who didn’t qualify for the all around championship competition scored high enough to make it but her team mates scored higher and each team is only allowed to send two people.

    Hope Solo, who was termed “prickly” up thread does have a tendency to intemperate speech. She claims Brandi Chastain doesn’t know anything about soccer. I definitely preferred Scurry.

    In one interview I heard Ms. Rhode talking about cleaning house and doing the laundry.

    I always guessed that jc was a closet Dodecahedronist

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  46. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 7:12 pm

    Touche, Suzanne. What’s opera, Doc?

    Beb “you didn’t build that” had an unequivocal antecedent in the previous sentence's reference to roads and bridges, a transportation system. Simple English Here's what RMoney is getting away with, and it is galling that he can. Doesn't say much for the electorate:


    Unless he thinks hedge funds are pitching in on infrastructure. And with the GOPers acting as if Obama's proposals about infrastructure spending as a means of putting people to work are somehow nonsense, when anybody with common sense knows the work is necessary and the jobs would come, it's hard to understand how these bastards can get away with this nonsense. It might be cruel, and it may be unfair, but I hope Willard picks Pawlenty for VP, who let the bridge fall down to cut taxes. I just don't see these issues as difficult to keep straight.

    The American Society of Civil Engineers is not some Soros-financed group of wild-eyed radicals. They are a bunch of belt and suspenders thinkers about design and safety. I guess the wild and crazy ones all work for the Army Corps. Anyway, ASCE has been issuing dire warnings about America’s infrastructure, particularly bridges, and most particularly that Minnesota bridge over the Mississippi, since the early ’90s. These reports generally have the sort of urgency voiced in that hair on fire PDB to W about airplanes flown into buildings. I’m not saying the bridge collapse was Pawlenty’s fault, but he was warned loud and clear, and treated the experts like the Greeks treated Cassandra, in the interest of buffing his fiscal responsibility image. When the next bridge collapse, and it will, I’ll have no compunction about blaming it on the GOPublicans in the House that have voted in vain to repeal ACA 33 franking times since Boner promised “jobs, jobs, jobs”. Fact is, ASCE turns out these infrastructure grading reports almost annually at a large cost to the members that the government would otherwise have to pay for. This is a natural GOP constituency that the party simply ignores because it suits their political aims, and damn the cost in damaged infrastructure and wasted lives. I say you must be an asshole to “govern” that way.

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  47. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 7:13 pm

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  48. Sherri said on July 30, 2012 at 7:16 pm

    I liked Brianna Scurry, but Hope Solo should have played that game; she was the better keeper by then.

    Solo is prickly, and always looking for a fight, but she’s a great keeper. She’s had some challenges growing up (her father kidnapped her and her brother from her mother, and her father was homeless on the streets of Seattle while she was playing at UW), and she has never learned to edit what she says. Chastain made some pointed remarks about Solo and a failed drug test, too.

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  49. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 7:27 pm

    Chastain will always get away with anything she says because she took her jersey off. Why that was such a huge deal, considering the number of women that run, play tennis, and exercise in what amount to sports bras, is beyond me. Always seemed to me that Solo resented the fact that Scurry’s team, particularly Chastain, got the bigger national buzz.

    Wonder if RMoney is invited/ And what’s wrong with Lech Walesa, the Cesar Chavez or Walter Reuther of Poland encouraging Willard? Oldtimer?

    ASCE statement on the I35W bridge collapse. I’m sure somebody wanted to say I told you so. This professional organization has been doing these assessments for 15 years and can’t get the ear of the legislative branch that holds the purse strings.

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  50. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 7:33 pm

    Hope Solo one-upping Brandi Chastain.

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  51. Prospero said on July 30, 2012 at 8:25 pm

    On what Bizarroworld planet is this RMoney gaffe not Freudian slip racism?


    And shouldn’t the Israelis be up in arms too, since real Israelis are Semites too, not Northern Europeans?

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  52. brian stouder said on July 30, 2012 at 10:10 pm

    Olympics on “the NBC family of networks” means I get no Rachel; I get no Lawrence, and (dare I say it) I get no Chris Matthews; so that the bottom line is that these days, I can’t get no satisfaction.

    I watched a little soccer, and a littler archery, and some fencing. I don’t get why the soccer clock counts up instead of down, and I don’t get why, when it reaches the game time limit, they then run it some more. The archery was interesting to me (for a few minutes) because good ol’ South Side High School here in Fort Wayne is the home of the Archers; and the fencing was completely opaque and mysterious to me. The “set” – or arena – for the fencing seemed to have come straight out of Hunger Games.

    All in all – meh!

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  53. Bitter Scribe said on July 30, 2012 at 11:42 pm

    brian: The forward-running clock takes some getting used to, but it has one thing going for it: It never stops. I mean never, not even for goals. That means no commercials until halftime. You contrast that with the major American sports, which often are two or three plays sandwiched by banks of commercials, and it’s refreshing. (It may also be a big part of the reason why soccer doesn’t attract major TV contracts.)

    The added time is a way to make up for the fact that the clock never stops. One of the officials (timekeepers?) tacks on a few minutes to the end of each half. The more the ball has been out of play, the more time gets added. It’s a way to keep a team with the lead from dragging its feet on throw-ins and other play stoppages.

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  54. MichaelG said on July 30, 2012 at 11:43 pm

    Well, I let myself get sucked into the Olympics and now I’m pissed. On week nights NBC shows things on a single channel from eight to midnight. First, one has to ask “Why so late?”. Many people, myself included, can’t watch more than an hour or so before having to go to bed so as to make an early start time at work the next day. Children? Not this year. How many kids can watch an eight to midnight program? Then to rub salt into the wound, NBC chooses to lead off the few minutes I do have to watch with that stupid synchronized diving. Men this time. And, of course they are all full of how one guy’s father just died. I’m sure the golden retriever has cancer too. I don’t know where this alleged sport came from but it seems like nothing more than a ploy to give those who weren’t good enough to make the real team a second chance. Whatever. I don’t want to watch it. They are saving what good programming they chose to ration out for later. All this stuff happened hours ago so that what we are now seeing is a deliberate and calculated bit of scheduling on the part of the network. They showed a lot of stuff during the day? Really? Remember that work stuff I mentioned? Good old NBC. Doing their best to destroy the Olympics. I turned it off. I have an old “Iron Chef” on in the background while I read Grisham’s latest that I scored from the library the other day.

    Rachel was there on MSNBC this eve.

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  55. MichaelG said on July 30, 2012 at 11:45 pm

    Solo also took off her clothes on a Brazilian web site I sometimes look at. Nothing worth seeing. All the girly bits were covered by arms and twisted hips.

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  56. Prospero said on July 31, 2012 at 12:23 am

    Added time in soccer is kept solely by referees and is very suspicious as a result.

    two or three plays sandwiched by banks of commercials

    Of course, many soccer games are two or three plays packed into 90 minutes of tedium.

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  57. Prospero said on July 31, 2012 at 12:25 am

    Just found out Elizabeth Warren is speaking in prime time at the Dem Convention. That should be good.

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  58. beb said on July 31, 2012 at 8:33 am

    Prospero @46. 2 demerits for not actually reading what I was talking about before ranting.

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