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The Olympic Spirit: War Without Blood

Joined: 2/3/2014
Posts: 1
When a country is at war, its people are unified against a common enemy: the book-burners, the city-destoyers, the freedom-stealers. Left or right, rich or poor, the citizens come together to support the soldiers who are bleeding and dying on the battlefield. The Olympics cultivates a bloodless battlefield in which rival countries compete to win that elusive gold medal. The soldiers are the most excellent athletes from around the world, and their most potent weapons are talent and dedication. Through the Olympics, people across the globe are able to unify with their countrymen in the spirit of international competition: war without violence or death. This war is a battle of excellence in which rivals and allies alike run, ski, and skate to the top.

My family is extremely opinionated, and our opinions vary greatly. So when we all get together for dinner or a birthday, it often turns into a pretty heated event. Someone mentions Obama, then someone mentions Bush, and it all goes haywire. When Olympic season comes around, however, our home is a very different story.

It was 2008 – the Summer Olympic Games in Beijing. Michael Phelps was preparing to swim for his eighth gold medal that summer, about to break the record for the most gold medals in one Olympic Games. All of us were sitting on the edge of our seats, holding our breath as Phelps prepared to dive. My sister reached for my hand and we squeezed each other tightly as the camera turned to Phelps’ main competitor, Milorad Čavić. Chelsea, the sister who is always bickering with me over this or that, reached for me in unified support of our American representative in the 100-meter butterfly. Our hearts pounded together to the beat of the Star Spangled Banner and our eyes gleamed red, white, and blue.

The buzzer went off and the soldiers dove into the water, more like dolphins than people. We shouted, “Go faster!” “Get ahead of Čavić!” “Almost there!” We were united in our support of an American athlete, a symbol of the excellence of our homeland. We were not arguing about policies or leaders or laws; we were cheering for our warrior, sharing the thrill of the competition, and lusting for the win. When Phelps touched that wall, we screamed so loud I was sure he could hear us in China. We leapt to our feet and embraced each other, celebrating our victory.

In that moment, all of us felt the Olympic Spirit. This phenomenon of unification is worldwide, and it is felt both in the White House and in my modest home. The Olympic Games are something that everyone can share with teams that everyone can cheer for and support. The Olympic Spirit brings nations together by creating a battlefield in which the soldiers strive to prove not that their country is the most dangerous, but that their country is the best.
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Comment by thiegsr

Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire editorial board, I would like to congratulate you for your Olympic Spirit essay being chosen as 1 of the essays in the running for 1st place in this month’s writing competition. This is a huge accomplishment, so please feel free to share your “runner up” status with the world.

We are in the process of selecting our top three winners, and naming the 1st place winner from the narrowed field. If you are selected as the winner of this month’s competition, we will contact you directly via the email you used for registration. We will be contacting the winner by Friday, March 14th.

Thanks for adding your voice to our mission “Changing the World . . . One Story at a Time”

Rebecca Thiegs Co-Founder and Education Consultant
Posted: Tuesday, March 4, 2014 7:09:41 PM
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Comment by thiegsr

Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire editorial board, I would like to congratulate you for your “War Without Blood” Olympic Spirit essay being selected as our first place winner.

Be proud of your accomplishment!

We will be contacting you via your registration email to give you details about your prizes.

Thanks for adding your voice to our mission “Changing the World . . . One Story at a Time” and keep writing.

Rebecca Thiegs Co-Founder and Education Consultant
Posted: Wednesday, March 12, 2014 6:11:32 PM
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