The Core Dump

A strong conviction that something must be done is the parent of many bad measures

[By Nic Lindh on Thursday, 19 August 2004]

The Olympics

Have been spending a lot of time watching the Olympics over the last few days. Lots of fun, even though I must confess to utterly failing to see how some of these sports became Olympic events. Seriously, softball? Beach volley ball? Doing dumb shit in a river with a canoe?

Fine and upstanding things to occupy your time with, surely, but Olympic events? Is there no end? Will every sport known to man become an Olympic event? Dammit, if doing dumb stuff in a river with a canoe is an Olympic sport, why not croquet? Why can’t croquet get any respect?

Darn those snobs in the Olympic Committee.

The two highlights so far for my money have been swimming and gymnastics. When it comes to swimming, the Australians have been kicking massive tail in the pool, and it makes one wonder if there’s some sort of national Australian subconscious thing at work here … “The next time somebody puts us on a boat and deports us we’ll bloody well swim right back, matey! No worries!”

The gymnastics competitions so far have been sublime, both the men’s and women’s. In gymnastics you have what could be called Ultimate Athletes, people who have been drilling their bodies so hard and with such single-mindedness of purpose that they can do things human beings simply should not be able to, and can do it over and over again with an eerily machine-like precision that is still full of grace.

Add to that the incredible pressure of performing these acts–which require such massive focus and concentration and utterly push the envelope of human ability–in a stadium in front of judges, said minute or so of performance being the end result of a lifetime of discipline and sacrifice and you can screw up completely and it will all have been for nothing. One tiny fraction of an inch misstep or just a microsecond’s lapse of focus and it will be a complete disaster. And there they are, sucking down their nervousness and fear and going out there and–mostly–triumphing.

So compelling.

At the same time, while watching women’s gymnastics, I wonder what is going on with their makeup? It’s completely understandable that you want to present a good front to the judges, and perhaps you’ll go a little overboard with the eyeliner just to make sure it looks good from a distance. Sure.

But the whore-glitter? Why do these women sprinkle their cheeks and hair with glitter? Are the judges ’70s pornstars?

**Listening To: ** Stream from Groove Salad

« Most clueless spammer ever?


Enjoy the ten latest posts!

Book roundup, part 30

Back once again with the sci-fi and general calamity. Includes The End is Always Near, Eat the Apple, A Memory Called Empire, Gideon the Ninth, Infinite Detail, Permafrost, Fallen, and The October Man.

The master’s tools will never be used to dismantle the master’s house

Any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice

Impressions moving from an Apple Watch Series 3 to Series 5

Is there reason to upgrade from a 3 to a 5?

Plans are worthless, but planning is everything

Often injustice lies in what you aren’t doing, not only in what you are doing

Die in a ditch

After all these years, Nic still can’t understand the American attitude to healthcare.

The big thieves hang the little ones

Book roundup, part 29

A sci-fi and fantasy heavy installment that includes The Valedictorian of Being Dead, The Mastermind, Broadsword Calling Danny Boy, Tiamat’s Wrath, The Raven Tower, The Liberation, The Light Brigade and Cryptonomicon.

Politics is not the art of the possible. It consists in choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable