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Too Late For That…

Tuesday, August 12th, 2008

So the Olympics are here… the round the clock world class performances in sports you never think twice about for 3.75 years. And I’m hearing all the “every four years” stories around me, including an old friend of mine who’s been blogging about his Olympic obsession.

Like him, I find myself awash in thoughts and emotions which visit every time the Olympic theme plays and the rings fill my TV screen as part of some far too expensive graphics package.

For as long as I can remember I’ve looked at these athletes and thought “What’s next for them?”. Especially during the summer games when spritely girls who can’t drive or see over coffee tables become the subject of heartfelt mini-documentaries about their grueling schedule and struggle to be a teenager.

16 year old superstars. Or 20. Maybe 25 for the real late bloomers. They arrive at the peak of their life – an Olympic performance. And if they win a medal it gets worse. Now what?

The pinnacle of existence before they’ve even had the chance to find a wrinkle or a gray hair. That leaves a lot of decades still to come.

And I think of the other side. The “I coulda done that” part of every American sitting on the couch eating potato chips while Michael Phelps makes a swim race look like a soak in a hot-tub. Of course we couldn’t, but it’s worse than that… Click to continue »