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The Olympic Spirit: Unity on the Ragged Old Couch



Joined: 2/26/2014
Posts: 2
allison.cantimbuhan
Lights change colors on the screen and transform into differing images. Six pupils dilate as they fixate on the resplendent worldwide event at the comfort of the family room. 2012, the summer Olympics were taking place in London, England. It was the first time I recollect actually watching the summer Olympics and it was this memory of sharing the cushion of the collapsing couch inside my constrained minute apartment living room that I realized the universal Olympic Spirit.

Huge machinery, thousands of dancers, fireworks, and of course the Queen, it was a spectacle worthy of showing off a nation’s greatest gems and accomplishments. However, the opening ceremony show wasn’t the aspect that caught my attention but of the parade of nations. Groups were made up of the best and fittest athletes of their country marching out and wearing odd-looking uniforms that correspond. In one hand, the flag of the country that they proudly represent and on the other a cellphone held up and facing the crowd—probably about to capture the moment for social media to tweet tweets and post on the infamous blue and white walls. Nations step out, those of so-called world powers and those of smaller states. I hear the names of all the countries announced one by one, all 204 of them. Then I slowly think to myself and list the countries that I knew at the top of my head reaching a maximum of about 10. Countries that I did not even know existed and countries with pronunciations I could not even fathom all proceed: Azerbaijan, Djibouti, Kyrgyzstan, Sao Toa and Principe, and so on. Then out come the group of athletes holding the blue and red flag with the yellow stars and sun. It was the appearance of my mom’s native country and that of my culture. My attention is disrupted with the cheering of my mom and the widening grin on her face as she roars for the country that shaped her entire foundation. There stood 11 Filipinos ready to represent their nation and to represent my mom’s native pride. Later, the Q, R, T, and S countries continue on and then the hoard of stars and stripes storm into the arena. All 530 athletes of them formulate Team USA, unfortunately all wearing horribly misshapen hats. Suddenly, I experienced the same pride my mom had for the Philippines but instead, I had it for what I considered to be my country, the United States of America.

It’s hard to imagine how after 17 days, all these countries and athletes all speaking different languages with different cultures will come together and walk out as one, no longer separated by their individual nations. This I believe is the true Olympic Spirit: the unification of all and the riddance of barriers and difference. Just like my own family squeezed inside the ragged couch, there stands a blend of cultures, shared dreams and aspirations.
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Comment by thiegsr


Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire StageofLife.com 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”

Sincerely,
Rebecca Thiegs
StageofLife.com Co-Founder and Education Consultant
Posted: Tuesday, March 4, 2014 7:10:35 PM
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