Moss, is humor writer from Tennessee. She writes a
weekly human interest column about daily life and the funny
things that happen to everyone.
She has written for the Daily News of Kingsport, Griffin Journal,
Oakridge Now, Atlanta Woman Magazine, Aberdeen Examiner, Angleton
Advocate, and Smyrna AM, a supplement of the Murfreesboro Daily News
Journal. She has been
published by Voyageur Press, McGraw Hill, and the good folks
at Guidepost Books. Her articles have appeared in
numerous anthologies and other publications, both in print and online.
She is a
former board member and past Editor of the Columnists.com, website of the National Society of Newspaper
oldest and largest professional organization
for columnists. She is the Web Editor of
Humorists.com and a founder of the Southern Humorists writers'
organization. She is writer, editor, and webmaster of HumorColumnist.com.
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Online Since 1999
||Let the Games Be Done....
the Games Be Done
Have you been watching the worldís biggest toga party?
They are calling it the Olympic Games, and the event is being
held in Greece.
As NBC passes the torch from one affiliate to another in an
unprecedented triathlon of television coverage, Iíve become
bleary eyed from watching it all. My remote control skills are
being subjected to a test of endurance greater than the skills
of the athletes.
After days and days of it, one swimmer looks pretty much like
another and those black and yellow blobs splashing back and
forth just donít have the thrill of, say, NASCAR. Iím
waterlogged and worn out and have discovered swimming strokes
that I didnít even know existed outside of an aquarium.
Athletes spend most of their waking time practicing, and getting
ready for the Olympics, we are told. Some spend an entire
lifetime training and becoming physically fit. And they still
have the guts to call it ďGamesĒ?
All this physical exertion leaves a dedicated couch potato
sweaty and out of breath. I know itís important to have
national pride and for young people to be physically fit, but it
sort of makes me wonder if we are training the physical body at
the exclusion of everything else. For the few that win, I
suppose it pays off in big monetary ways with product
endorsements and paid performances.
ďThe important thing is just to be here and to be able to
compete,Ē say the athletes to the camera. Right - and thatís
why we tally up each country's medals to see who got the most.
Somehow it always seems to be the losers who are saying it
doesnít matter. Everyone else is too busy counting.
Many of the sports were never really intended to be spectator
sports. Watching someone throw a discus is entertaining? I
donít think so. My shoulder has been out of joint ever since I
saw the first throw. And they are throwing on the exact same
field that the early Greeks originally used, says the
commentator. Oh, yeah? Bet their ashes would turn over in their
Grecian urns if they could see what their simple competitions
The most watched event as a spectator sport seems to be
womenís beach volleyball. Even the players admit that the
spectators are not there to look at a volleyball game. Itís
supposed to be sexy. So, I suck in my tubby tummy and hope no
one notices the varicose veins. The way some of those Amazons
look, however, we must be pretty desperate to see babes in
The cutest participants are the gymnasts, of course, bouncing
around with glitter in their hair and on their eyelids. Why is
it that looking cute in sequins enhances their performance, but
the female swimmers donít wear a stitch of mascara or
lipstick? For the sake of womanhood, I hope someone invents
waterproof eye glitter before the next Olympic Games.
Actually, the gymnasts make me nervous. Holding my breath and
doing a mental balancing act right beside them, I always think
we will fall off and hurt something important. The announcers
always see things that I donít. ďOh, look at that! Her
toenail is hanging off the beam. You canít do that in Olympic
level competition. And she bounced when she landed! Sheís out
Picky! Picky! Picky! May the gymnast with the cutest outfit win,
Does all this sports coverage really do much to inspire us to
athletic fitness? It certainly does inspire us to baggy,
bloodshot eyes from too much television watching and helps us to
understand the intricacies of offbeat sports like kayaking that
we never have, and never will, give a whit about.
The new endurance record will be that of the dazed television
viewers who have suffered through more hours of non-stop
coverage than we ever imagined possible. When they start giving
out gold medals and olive wreaths for couch potato
participation, Iíll be there!
Copyright 2004 Sheila Moss
Nashville, TN 37219
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