Thursday, August 21, 2008

Into the Home Stretch

It always seems to happen like this - after a week or so of the Olympics, watching them becomes an addiction - a beast that must be fed on a daily and/or nightly basis, lack of sleep be damned. With a cat nap thrown in every now and then, I've been burning the midnight oil for several days now, primarily because of the sadistic pleasure that NBC seems to take from saving the evening's marquee event for last. I suppose that one could argue that this is just a function of the schedule and the time difference, but I'm not sure I'm buying that argument. Just seems like too much of a coincidence to me.

My defenses against all things Olympic have been broken down to the point where I actively enjoyed the final event in women's gymnastics (balance beam), as well as the coronation of Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh as the reigning queens of beach volleyball. Overall, the judging in gymnastics still drives me nuts and I'm not sold on the long-term entertainment value of beach volleyball, but those last two events had more than their share of drama.

I still wish that NBC tried to mix up their nightly program a bit; I'd love to see more of the events that they're showing on the other networks - boxing, wrestling, tennis, soccer, etc. I'd even settle for the "highlights" approach that they've taken to using for the field events, although that approach really sucks the drama out of something that might have been really exciting (no way of knowing, based on the limited evidence at hand). And Mary Carillo's nightly pieces aren't that interesting; surely there is something happening each day that could augment the drama just a little bit. doubt about it; I'm really going to be sorry when it's over.

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