Tag Archives: Olympics

The Wonders of (Old) Technology

5 Aug

So how do you maintain your daily dose of Olympics when life dictates a trip to Chicago?  The VCR, my friends, the VCR.

You remember those old machines that play clunky old tapes, right?  No?  Well surely your remember the problem that my dear sister had earlier in the summer because of this out-of-date entertainment equipment.

But it turns out that the VCR, like an athlete everyone thought should have retired four years ago, made a stunning comeback and redeemed itself.

So that big race between Lochte and Phelps that the world watched Thursday?  Yep, we got to see that via onboard VCR as we made the early morning trek to the windy city.  Poor picture quality never made three groggy boys so happy.

Day-old Olympics and day-old doughnuts – the secrets to a successful road trip.

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Advertisements

Let the what begin?

2 Aug

Did you know the Olympics were about sports?  I know, I got so caught up in food, and crafts, and even geography, that those athleticky things sort of slipped my mind.

Not our boys’ though.  Nope.  One hour into Opening Ceremonies they were still asking “When is it going to start?”  We just kept answering that it already had.  Finally, (no world record’s for parenting adroitness here) we figured out they were asking when people were going to start playing games.

Oh, yeah.  Games.  Tomorrow.

So, like the Olympians we too let our games begin last Saturday.  Since then our little sports have pretty much kept us honest with at least one event per day.  We’ve had running races, biking races, basketball, cricket, archery, and shooting.  We’ve enjoyed the thrill of victory, and the agony (and whining) of defeat.  We’ve learned the rules to games most people don’t acquire from books.  We’ve handcrafted our own tools of the competition.We’ve taken games we loved, modified them with a slight jump of the pitcher and addition of really young players, and referred to them by their Olympic, and excitingly buggy monikers.We’ve given medals for cuteness.

We’ve learned the national anthems of China, Australia, Great Britain and the good ol’ USA.  We’re cheering on our teammate from Brazil so that one day soon he too can hear his national anthem sung loud and clear through the screendoor on YouTube.  We’ve worn our medals with pride, and noticed that while our comrades in London have purple ribbons around their necks instead of blue, they have still have lids, just like us.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Keep Away from Open Flame, or Even Closed

29 Jul

I dislike fire.  A lot.  I don’t want to go into the details, but let it suffice to say that in my first two years of high school there was an exploding lab table and a student in French class who gave us a dramatic lesson in the meaning of the word ‘flambé.’

Our ice cream torches from Friday night are long gone, so our Olympic games seemed to be lacking that iconic blaze, and despite my fears something needed to be done.  We researched some past cauldrons for inspiration.  Remember that horrible one from Atlanta that looked like a McDonald’s french fry container?  Awful.  But I’ll give them ingenuity points for recycling the grease to keep the flame alive.

Seeing as we were fresh out of fast food containers we scavenged the basement for cardboard, developed a design, and got to work.

While watching water polo, of course.

Everyone got a chance to carry the torch as we moseyed around the house.

Yes, there really is a torch under there, but it’s just a toilet paper tube, so don’t look too closely.

We had to work on the hand-offs,

but once we got them down the fire picked up some speed.

Simeon was so full of hot air from his leg that he began to come off the ground like a hot air balloon.  

The most senior Olympians got the last legs, ending with the lighting of the cauldron in a place of honor above the TV set, where it will burn until the end of the games.

Why so high, you ask?  Even tissue paper flames, no especially tissue paper flames need to be kept out of the reach of little twins.

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Distraction of Olympic Proportions

27 Jul

Oh, those Olympics.  They have a way of interrupting life, don’t they?  Like the time back in my college days when we decided during one of the advertisement breaks of the Atlanta Games to turn down our water heater in order to save a bit of money.  We flipped the breaker, adjusted the thermostat, and then rushed back to the living room at the first notes of the John Williams theme.  Three days later, after numerous chilly showers, my roomates and I realized that we had been so distracted by the games that we failed to flip back on the breaker.

I blame Bob Costas.

And yet here he is invading our lives 16 years later and I couldn’t be happier.

This is the first time we’ve really gotten the kids involved in the addicting athletic event.  Today we picked teams based on a complicated equation of favorite colors, propensity for medals, and continental distribution.Our supper , like the age-old games, was provided by Greece (and a really great recipe from the Twins’ Godmother.)Even the salad dressing got into the spirit.  It was probably just excited that I did not serve the lettuce out of a bag for once.

We carried chilly torches because I have a bit of a phobia of actual flames,and even had an educational moment or two.Like the one where we got to distinguish between fiction and nonfiction after Simeon remarked that England should have asked Susan and Lucy to be on their archery team.

________________________________________________________________________________________________