Sunday, February 14, 2010

Why I Despise The Olympics and Sports In General



Competition.

Winning at all costs.

Hubris.

Narcissism.

Every single Olympic athlete you see over the next 2 weeks, whether they win or lose, has maintained a single-minded focus on winning for YEARS.

Friends, took 2nd place.

Financial responsibility, took 2nd place. In fact, they became a financial black hole for every family member and sponsor they could find.

Education, took 2nd place.

Relationships, took 2nd place.

Family took 2nd place.

Nothing in this entire world was more important to them than winning every single competition and proving to the world that they were better than everyone else at what they do.

That is some pathological fucked-uppedness right there.

There is nothing to be admired about someone who is totally absorbed in themselves and their own pursuits to the exclusion of everything else.

These aren't role models.

They are text book examples of how NOT to be a caring, well rounded, productive member of society.

Perhaps you sports fans can enlighten me.

Out of all the Olympic medalists in history, how many have cured a disease, sheltered a homeless person, fed the hungry, made a scientific breakthrough that changed the world for the better?

If we took all of the money in the world that is WASTED on sports and poured it into basic scientific research in life sciences and physics, we would have all of the energy we could ever use, everyone could live forever and no one would have to go without the basic necessities of life.

The only bigger waste of time, energy, emotions, finances and resources in the world is organized religion.

But don't get me started on that!

12 comments:

Old Fart said...

So, competition is a bad thing? Yeah, lets all just be equal at everything. Gold Stars for everyone!

Where you see hubris and narcissism I see people setting a goal and working towards meeting it rather than sitting back and coasting.

It's not about winning, its about doing the best you can.

It might be that you are great at math, and push yourself to be the first to solve an economic issue.

It might be that you can play the hell out of a piano, and you push yourself to compose a piece of music that no one will ever forget.

It might be that you are able to strap blades on your feet and skate around on ice at 30 mph, and you want to be the fastest in the world.

It's all competition.

Hell, when you interview for a job, it's a competition. If you aren't a bit narcissitic then you probably aren't getting the job.

People are animals.

Animals compete.

For food, for shelter, for mates.

Of course for most animals that competition ends in death an awful lot of the time... but man figured out a way to compete without killing the loser.

Oh, and where do you get off mentioning someone being a financial black hole to family and people who WILLINGLY give their money? Aren't you the person spouting about creating the financial black hole called universal health insurance by forcefully taking money from people who don't agree with that premise?

Yeah.

Xavier Onassis said...

Old Fart - Yes. Competition IS a bad thing because it is inherently combative.

It's a primitive, reptilian-brain attitude.

It is the start of every war in human history.

"You have something I need to survive so I'm going to take it from you! I will survive and you will die!"

A more progressive approach is "I have something you need to survive. You have something I need to survive. Let's work together and share our resources so we can both survive."

That is the basis of every civilization in history.

Cooperation over competition.

"People are animals.

Animals compete.

For food, for shelter, for mates.

Of course for most animals that competition ends in death an awful lot of the time... but man figured out a way to compete without killing the loser."

Yes, we did figure out a better way. It's called setting aside competition and embracing cooperation.

Sports are an emotional throwback to the "Man! I sure wish it was like the old days when we could just fucking kill each other!" vibe.

Combat=violence=competition=sports=bullshit.

"Oh, and where do you get off mentioning someone being a financial black hole to family and people who WILLINGLY give their money? Aren't you the person spouting about creating the financial black hole called universal health insurance by forcefully taking money from people who don't agree with that premise?"

Yeah, I am "that guy" and I don't have a problem with it. I think that we should all pony up to ensure that none of our fellow residents (notice I didn't use the term 'citizens') have to go without the basic necessities of life. You know, like simply staying alive.

Fuck man, you seem to have more compassion for dogs than you do humans!

I would add the money that humans spend on animals to the money they spend on sports to the "wasted money" pool.

Animals survived just fine for millions of years before humans "domesticated" them.

I'm pretty sure they can survive without special diets, humiliating sweaters and booties, and "animal whisperers".

Given our conflicting human vs. animal priorities, you really want to pick a fight with me over who can skate the fastest while wearing spandex?

The only part of the Olympics I like is that part where a guy gets to hold a woman up in the air by grabbing her crotch.

I don't know which sport that is, but I would compete like a motherfucker in that sport.

Practice, practice, practice!

I Travel for JOOLS said...

"Let me win, But if I cannot win, Let me be brave in the attempt."

That is the oath of the Special Olympics.

You see, there is competition in nearly everything we do in life. Competition makes us stronger, gives us motivation, and even in the case of special olympians, instills a sense of worthiness.

Kanga said...

Hey, XO, I'm as liberal as the next guy, maybe even as liberal as you are, but I still like the testosterone charge I get from a good game of basketball (even though I suck at it,) or I used to get from smacking someone up side the head with a rattan sword back in my SCA days.

I'm with you on the health care fight, but if we're ever going to get that done, we have to compete against the bad ideas of the other side. The weird irony is that sometimes, to help folks who are weaker than us, we have to fight and defeat the folks (ie: Republicans) who would let them suffer. That does take a competitive spirit, and sports can be a place where we develop that spirit.

Besides, I'm married to a Canuck, so we will have the Olympics on the teevee for the next two weeks. That's a fight I can't win...

Nightmare said...

I don't have time to argue your seemingly endless supply of bullshit, so I will just list a few of the former Olympians who have went on to do more for their fellow man then work in a bank and spew vile shit from a blog safely hidden in the depths of the interwebs....

1)Olympic decathlete Dave Johnson, went on to work in special education.
2)Kerri Strug works in the US Department of Justice
3)Matt Biondi, one of America's most decorated swimmers,become a high school teacher in Hawaii.
4)Eric Heiden, now an orthopedic surgeon in Utah
5)Anne Henning, teaches the fourth grade
6)Jim Craig, now 52, is the national spokesman for the Ultimate SAAAVE (Saving Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Very Efficiently) campaign.
Oh and hey, lets try and think about the contributions of the black athlete for civil rights. Ask ANYONE in the NAACP and they will tell you unequivocally that without the sports heroes breaking color barriers and being GOOD role models for the movement then they would be DECADES behind.

Your arguments cry of a boy being picked last for kick ball, or not at all, or the kid that was picked on because he had no athletic ability, and was not accepted because of it.

You said I would find answers here, all I found were the ramblings of a bitter old man with an axe to grind. Your arguments hold no water and are an affront those people who are trying to make a difference in the world we live in.

When is the last time you did anything to help your community,your fellow man,the unwashed masses? Has your beliefs lead you to quit your corporate job and travel to a natural disaster site and lend a hand? did you go to New Orleans? Or Haiti, how about Indonesia? You talk a good game about sharing and helping and survival of the tribe, but unless I missed a blog posting, you don't seem to practice what you preach. Do you know how many man ours and money the NFL players have donated to Katrina and Haiti? Millions of both!

I love you dearly for your opinions, and your personality, you always bring discussions to this spot, but in this instance, I can't help but think you are completely wrong.

Xavier Onassis said...

Nightmare - So a handful of former Olympians that no one has ever heard of went on to have pretty much normal, mundane jobs like everybody else. Wow.

"...the sports heroes breaking color barriers and being GOOD role models for the movement..."

Umm, you mean like Micheal Vick and the entire NBA? Give me a break.

I'll have you know that I was quite a strapping lad in my youth! Every single year Coach Bonuchi tried to get me to join the football team and every single year I told him to go piss up a rope. Didn't see any point in staying at school when every one else had gone home AND showing up on Saturday mornings AND playing games on Friday nights! Fuck. That.

That was time I could be spending getting high and chasing tail. Which is exactly what I did. I was an athlete of a different sort.

"...those people who are trying to make a difference in the world we live in."

WHAT FUCKING DIFFERENCE? That's my point. The world will not be one bit different after the games than it was before the games! Who wins and loses a game means NOTHING!

As to how I help my fellow citizens, there are those who read this blog who can tell you if they choose to. But for my part, I prefer to keep that shit to myself. That's between me and the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

Love you too, brutha. Thanks for playing.

Lee said...

Over to you, emaw...

Nick said...

dude...you so need to get laid.

Nightmare said...

Handful, Ninja Please, that was from one article, and good role models for a movement that started PRIOR to the NBA, Michael Vick's parents, people like Jesse Owens, Joe Louis, Jackie Robinson, Muhammad Ali, Arthur Ash, Tommie Smith and John Carlos...Just to name some even an Anti-Sports guy should have heard about.

And Just because your high school football coach asked you to be on the team doesn't mean he wanted you to play. I am guessing that he may have wanted to teach you that there is more to life then middle management and getting high.

Your increased ignorance of sports, their role in society still hold no water, and could be argued for the win by a drunken child.

I am also a little ashamed that you feel that working with special needs kids, and teachers are making NO DIFFERENCE in the lives they touch.

Shame Shame Shame.

The Wednesday Weekly said...

"The only bigger waste of time, energy, emotions, finances and resources in the world is organized religion."

...and self-righteous blogging.

Well, look at it this way, it's only for two weeks... then March Madness...then spring training... then......

Tom said...

Competition is simply product of selection. It's nice to idealize some sort of utopian equality, but we're simply not wired for that.

Sandie said...

No one, including my inner geek, is going to spend over $200 to watch a R&D team in action, or build a city to accomodate the next Pharmaceutical Convention, so its not like if we get rid of sports, the money will all be funneled to something good.

But it bothers me so, as well, that people center their lives around watching other people playing games. Its gross.

BUT, and this is a big but, I think athleticism is a stunning component of the human body, I think competition is a drive that brings innovation and good for the masses, I think we all take  a huge part in not managing our priorities - some to the be the best runner, some to have the biggest presence on the web, some to be the most successful junior lawyer in the firm, some to have the prettiest garden on fucking Farmville.

So, yes, I understand your complaint about how the masses spend so much money and time and energy in watching other people play games . . . but I think it is part of the human condition to try and be the best - whatever that means to us.