Every 4 years, or 5 years this time, or every two years if you recognize the one with all the skiing, a bunch of young people gather in Sarajevo or some such place most of them have never heard of to have a frightening amount of sex in The Olympic Village. Also, there are some sports. And also swimming.
Today, and also many other days in July and August, we will watch the world’s best, or at least the world’s best amongst those who have ever tried each event, compete against each other on the world’s stage for the purpose of NBC cutting together endless tearjerker life-affirming redemption stories about some mom waking up early and an archer who got a paper cut once as a child.
Oh hell, you know you’re watching it. What else are you doing on a Saturday in late July?
So let’s watch together.
Before we do, though, let me remind you of the single best ever advertising campaign: Dan vs. Dave.
Reebok executives thought the best way to get the kids to tear up their Nikes and buy Reeboks would be to tie their entire campaign to two potential 1992 Olympic Decathletes—Dan O’Brien and Dave Johnson.
Their commercial first ran during Super Bowl XXVI, which was half a freaking year before the 1992 summer Olympics. You know how the kids love the Decathlon, and how they think of nothing else but American Decathletes for six months at a time in the dead of winter? Well that was the hope of the Reebok corporation. And they ran the ever-loving hell out of this campaign all over network TV in the year of our Lord 1992.
As for the commercial itself, it’s basic Wheaties style athlete worship. Nothing memorable, really.
...except Dan O’Brien did not qualify for the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games when he screwed up the pole vaulting part of the decathlon (no, I cannot name the remaining 9 events, though I think one of them is marrying a Kardashian) in the Olympic trials in New Orleans.
Oh, and Dave only won the Bronze.
So who's going to win the decathlon? Dan or Dave?— Andrew VU '04 (@AndrewVU041) July 24, 2021
What's the worst Olympic sport to watch?— Andrew VU '04 (@AndrewVU041) July 24, 2021
What's the oddest Olympic sport to get all patriotic about?— Andrew VU '04 (@AndrewVU041) July 24, 2021
I think the USA is playing The Netherlands in Beach Volleyball now, for some reason.
See you in the comments.