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Olympic hangover

POSTED August 17, 2012
BY Rick Wilson
Twitter: @scribewilson

                                                               Olympic hangover

THOMASTON – I woke up this morning and was lost. More than usual. Where were Michael Phelps and Missy Franklin? Kobe and LeBron were nowhere to be found while Matt Lauer, sometimes weather guy Al Roker and Co. had disappeared at least from London.

Call it a bit of an Olympic hangover. Every four years I get lured in like a bass to a hook with a worm on it. And if bass don’t go for worms let it go. The only fishing I do is in the grocery store for scallops or shrimp once in a while.

On the normal summer morning, my son Jonathan and I plunk ourselves on couch waiting for our eyelids to focus on the day, he with an apple juice and me with my coffee and newspaper.

There isn’t much variation in our viewing habits these days, Sports Center ruling the air waves unless we want to check up on the weather. We could tell you a lot about Penn State, the Red Sox losing again and the top ten plays.

Then for two weeks we were in London. Sports Center got a glimpse during commercials or if the power walking medal race was on, (Let me get this straight, no baseball or softball or golf but power walking?), but that was it. And the location and NBC made it easy.

Due to the five-hour time difference there was always something live going on and NBC has more stations than Jim Calhoun has cycling accidents to show them to you. There were options here.

NBC-4 with Lauer and Co. was not about live action, opting for more entertainment value for the morning crowd. So if you didn’t like watching Matt and Al wrestling which wasn’t exactly the Rock and John Cena or if Al’s word of the day didn’t exactly get your morning going there were other venues.

I charted one of our mornings.

7 A.M. – Got up, stumbled down stairs and grabbed the first cup of eye-opener for the day. Grabbed the newspapers and fed the cats before heading into the living room to turn on the set.  Found a little beach volleyball with Misty May and Kerri. Suddenly I was wide awake.

7:05 – Jonathan staggers in and I quickly give him his apple juice. He notices Misty May and Kerri and says, “Hey dad, they’re wearing their jackets. My baby boy is growing up.

7:15 – We switch back to NBC-4 and the Mayor of London is hanging on zip line 20 or so feet above ground and going nowhere. Word is that they eventually got him down but there are a few politicians we’d like to hang up there permanently.

7:20 – Some basketball highlights where Carmelo Anthony takes a shot to the crown jewels by an Argentinian player. I hear an “ouch” from the other end of the couch and we both figure Carmelo will live and his voice will come down. Meanwhile, we figure the Argentinians are in trouble.

7:25 – First bathroom break of the day. On the return we opt to check in to Sports Center while Bob Maxon is telling us that it will be warm. Thanks Bob we say in between sweat drops. On Sports Center, we hear that Josh Beckett gave up five first inning runs again. He’s kind of like death and taxes these days. Give him the chicken and beer back.

7:35 – It’s worth listening to Michael Phelps. Lauer does a good interview with the Golden Boy and you start to realize that you’ve seen greatness and that it doesn’t last forever, only the moment does.

7:45 – Here come the girls gymnastic champions and they are as entertaining outside of the gym as they are in the gym. The idea they are being tweeted by Justin Bieber doesn’t really impress Jonathan. He doesn’t exactly have Bieber fever.

7:50 – Jonathan and I decide who is showering first. He gets to go.  We watch some women’s soccer action and discuss whether Hope Solo’s talent is as big as her mouth sometimes. But you have to admire what the team is doing.

8:00 – Time to get respective backsides off of the couch. Mom demands it. We will repeat the scene tomorrow.

That was kind of it for the better part of two weeks. Quickly it became routine. Even in the afternoon. No General Hospital or reruns of Saved by the Bell. If we’re home, it’s London and the Olympics.

 Now, it’s over and there is an emptiness. We still sit on the couch, but it’s taken longer for the daytime energy to kick in.

We’ve gone back to Sports Center, but it is a letdown. We want balance beams and gold medals. We want the national anthem and fencing. Okay, skip the fencing. We want Geno and the girls and the Blade Runner. We want Usain Bolt and  Gabby Douglass. We want those tanking badminton players. Where’s Geno, Diana and Sue Bird? I want to see if the mayor is still hanging around.

We’ve been kind of wandering around now. We will adjust. But in the meantime I’m going searching for Misty May and Kerri Walsh. They have to be here somewhere. Someone play me a national anthem, please.

Of course, school starts in two weeks and there will be no TV watching at all.           

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