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The Olympic Spirit: He Did What?!

Joined: 2/18/2014
Posts: 3
I am not a sports person. I have watched exactly one football game in my life, and that was when my fourth-grade class’s “adopted college” went up against a rival class’s. That being said, I avidly look forward to the Olympics every year they take place.
To athletes, the Olympics offer an opportunity to justify years of hard work, to represent their countries and make them proud. To the world, the Olympics signify a time when national differences are set aside to honor the best athletes.
To me, the Olympics mean something simpler. As a child, the Olympics meant being able to stay up late watching TV – a novel experience in the sweet time when bedtime was a consistent ten-o’-clock. Later, they meant sitting in front of the TV with a slack jaw, utterly amazed at the seemingly impossible feats that Olympians were somehow able to pull off. This year, the Olympics reminded me that there are things in life more important than that first-period physics test. Family, for example. Marveling at the grace and beauty of ice dancers and the daring resourcefulness of speed skaters with my mom is a pleasure that comes only once every four years. Don’t get me wrong – I am a full supporter of education and being prepared and whatnot. But as that one commercial for the iPad that keeps on airing says, “Medicine, law, business, engineering – these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love – these are what we stay alive for.”
To me, the Olympics are curling up in front of the TV with my mom and dad, snuggling under a shared blanket with a cup of hot chocolate warming my hands. They are the cries of pain and pity that involuntarily come out of my mouth when someone slips and her dreams are washed down the drain. They are the envious sighs and the awed “Whoa”s that accompany a perfect spin or flip, the “He did what?!”s and the “Oh, no”s. The Olympics inspire emotions in me that movies or TV shows never do, because these are real people with real lives with real things to gain and real things to lose. I root for every athlete, silently begging the figures on the television screen to do their best, regardless of their nationalities. Of course the Olympics mean bringing home medals to your country, but they’re also about showing the world what you’ve got – what humanity has got, if it could summon the endurance and the perseverance and the resolution. The Olympics inspire me even though I’m not a sports person because the Olympians, after all, are humans. Their triumphs and travails are universal.
The Olympics celebrate the human spirit as well as the human body. They make me believe in myself, because, heck, if a ski jumper can fly across a football field, I can suck it up and study for that first-period test tomorrow. After, of course, watching the Olympics.
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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 7:09:57 PM
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