If I was an organized blogger, I'd schedule it around the time the Olympics start showing, but I'm not. So, here it is:
I pride myself on not being an American that feels like "We are Americans. We are the best. No other country matters but us." But, when it comes to the Olympic Games, I find myself being uber-American. I want America to win all the medals. I want the telecasts to show all the American events (especially when medals are involved). But, if you live in another country, that doesn't happen. Australians want to watch Australians. Can you believe that?!
Here's a few of the things that I discovered watching the Olympics while living in another country:
- You know those little mini stories and bios that usually pull at your heartstrings that feature a personal story about athletes? If you're in Australia, they're about Australian athletes. Duh.
This gif depicts the first ever gold medal won by an Australian, and it is a regular feature story.
- You know those extremely entertaining sports that are the top priority for my viewing: gymnastics (Summer Olympics) and figure skating (Winter Olympics)? Well, they aren't all that frequently shown here. And when they are, they show the Australian competitors...who usually aren't medal contenders, so they don't often show the full coverage of gymnastics and figure skating. I know. It's a travesty.
- I have more to say about this topic. My most favorite Olympics viewing moments are watching gymnastics and figure skating. I love the combination of artistry and athleticism. I love watching the athlete perform a routine, then anxiously await the judges' score. I like that this fills entire nights of excitement, thrills, and even spills. I like that the commentators are often former medal winners and Olympians. I don't get this here. This is what I miss the most for my Olympic entertainment.
- The television coverage here highlights the Australian medal contenders and winners (understandably so). Sometimes, Americans are in the events (particularly snowboarding in Winter and swimming in Summer). I've lived here long enough to be happy for Australian winners, but I'll admit it, if they are competing against an American, I want the American to win gold, and the Australian to win silver.
- Medal ceremonies...those times that an athlete has won a gold medal and he/she is standing on the podium with his/her hand over the heart and singing "The Star Spangled Banner"...and the viewer gets goosebumps as the camera zooms in on the parents in tears and the crowd waving American flags...nope, you don't see that here.
- Yes, when something monumental takes place, like beating a World Record or Michael Phelps being awarded the medal that makes him the recipients of the most medals of any Summer Olympian, it's just good journalism for that to be televised. And, it is. But, you don't get all the stories and interviews and feel-good American hoopla surrounding it (when you don't live in America).
- BIG events, like the "world's fastest man" or the 4x100m swimming relay are televised live. But, living in a land with a timezone that rarely comes close to any timezone that the event is taking place, often the result gets "spoiled" by the time I watch it. Unless I avoid all social media, news commentary, and turn off all alerts on my phone, I get spoilers.
Do you watch the Olympics? What's your favorite part of the Games to watch?