Friday, February 21, 2014

Corporate Olympics

I'm still feeling crabby about NBC. Tonight should have been a slam dunk. They had us. The women's free skate probably had the biggest natural audience of all the winter sports the Olympics had to offer. Piece of cake, right? All they had to do was rerun the skating and throw in a bunch of commercials. At our house, we would have watched each one so that we didn't miss a thing. We would have made a night of it. I would have served food reminiscent of the Super Bowl. We could have begun as early as 7:00pm and ended at 10:30.


At 7:00pm, there was nothing. We switched to the Canadian channel, CBUT. Yay Canadians! By 8:00pm, the Canadians had shown almost all of the women's free skate! It was great! I even liked their commentators even though I didn't recognize them from the skating world. These people actually stopped talking and watched the performance now and then instead of talking through each jump. Then, since Mike got a call and missed the end. We grudgingly switched to NBC. At some point, they aired one skater, someone who had no chance to win. Good. Keep it going. We might have been on a roll, late start or not.

Next, they took away the momentum completely by switching to skiing after that first skater. Mike switched back and forth between NBC's commercials amid ski coverage and a dumb movie. I'll tell you this - we got to see most of the dumb movie.

Then, at around 9:15pm, they aired another skater! Yay! Skating. Was Mike going to see it after all?

Nope. After the second skater, they switched to something else again. And, we were back to the dumb movie again.

I can't believe that we watched a dumb movie during the last days of the Olympics! I had been watching on and off all week, but mostly on the Canadian channel. I never did find the biathlon on NBC. I didn't see many of the speed skaters and what I did was on CBUT. On that channel, I watched the luge and skeleton, sports I'm not usually interested in. Plus, they got me involved in watching curling. Yup! Curling was cool. There's so much precision in curling, physics, and strategy. I didn't understand a word the players said, even when they spoke English, but I had a good time watching. I loved the commentary and even some of the patriotic commercials. I had wanted to see some cross-country skiing too, but I didn't find that on NBC. I didn't find much on NBC at all.

So, at about 10:00 pm, NBC finally got into a groove of the women's free skate and Mike switched away from the stupid movie. We were seeing it. It was pretty exciting, though I already knew the scores from watching the Canadian program.

Mike loves watching the women skate. He has an eye for their abilities, for their jumps and their scores in artistry. He's hard to please. I love almost all of the skaters. I'm generally enthusiastic but clueless. Mike can pick the best just watching them warm up. He sees all errors and can put a name to them.

But something broke with this dedicated fan tonight. At 10:30 pm, Mike got up and went to bed without watching to the end. He was disgusted with all the waiting, with the interweaving of other events, and with the stupid movie. I don't blame him.

The days of gathering around a coffee table littered with chips, dip, and red, white, and blue napkins during the Olympics are over. The days of watching the talents from each country are over. The days of patriotism over our own athletes are over.

Welcome to Corporate Olympics. Watch if you can tolerate it for more than an hour at a time.

Thank you for listening, jules

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