I think it's pretty obvious that out of the many olympic games, only one is the true king. I wouldn't even mention it, since I'm sure we're all in agreement here, but I'm feeling crazy, so let me put it out there :
What a sweet sport. I'm not all that into sports usually (with a few exceptions), but curling is different. I've seen it on TV before and it's basically shuffleboard on ice with some major improvements, like the use of brooms. Yeah, there's actually a sport that employs brooms. The players of the game call it "chess on ice". That's incredibly nerdy, so I call it "the awesomest thing ever on ice".
Especially interesting are the terms the use. There's no boring crap like "foul line" or "goal". We have things like the "hog line" and "stones" and "vice skips".
I have a huge mental list of things that I must do before I die. I've been really fortunate and have done most of these things already, but some huge ones remain, and I keep adding more.
One of such items is "Play in the Olympics". I'd actually like to get a medal (I would seriously NEVER take it off, and almost every sentence would end with "... because I have a gold medal and you don't"), but I don't know how realistic that is.
Of the sports in the olympics, most seem like that would take far too much time to get competant. Take downhill skiing, for example. The level of physical fitness I'd have to get to would be totally insane and not worth my time. I believe I could do it, but would have to sacrifice a lot.
Curling, on the other hand, is a fairly immature olympic sport. My friend Jonah pointed out that unlike skiing where winners are made by tenths of seconds, there are often blowouts in curling. What this tells us is that it hasn't been refined down.
Also, old men play curling. Seriously... is an old men more mentally agile or in better shape than me? Some are, but I have an advantage on them.
So yesterday I caught the curling fever, and was discussing it with Jonah, who feels the same way I feel about it. I looked up "Texas curling" on google and was thrilled to see that Houston has a curling league. Even better, they were having a one night exposition in San Antonio (about 80 minutes away) THAT NIGHT. We planned to go, but due to delays totally within our control, we were running seriously late.
If we decided to still go, we'd only have maybe 15 minutes of curling time - and for that we'd have to be on the road for nearly three hours. We decided that curling is worth it and we headed out to San Antonio.
When we got there it was easy to get on the ice and get involved.
The only problem is that we were clearly not well received. Over the years my taste in fashion has improved (in my opinion) to the point where a reasonable percentage of people who see me assume that I'm some sort of celebrity. I actually get asked for autographs and pictures on a fairly regular basis. The old people involved with curling, however, were visibly disturbed by my sequined hat and painted nails. They were friendly... but only as friendly as they had to be.
No matter, we got to throw the stone a few times and it was so much fun. There's a lot more to the game than I had guessed there would be and I really enjoyed it. So, we're going to join a league and learn how to play.
The bad part is that we'll have to drive that whole distance every week, but Jonah says there was a study that positively correlated the distance driven to a team meeting and the level of excellence that person achieved in the sport. Our new plan is to join a team in Nova Scotia and commute weekly.
We're not sure whether or not we can make the US team. Sure, we're the best at everything, but who knows what the process involves. Our backup plan is to find a country like Costa Rica that doesn't have a team, and ask them to create one. We'll have to find some native Costa Ricans (so if you're Costa Rican, e-mail me), and possibly move there but I don't care - it would be well worth it to be an official Olympian. And imagine if we destroyed the US Curling team and got some sweet platinum medals. That would rock.