Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Olympic Fever!

Every two years, viewers around the world crowd around their TV sets and computers to watch the Olympics.  Our household is no exception to the rule.

The 2012 London games have been quite different for me.  In years past, I was able to plop on my couch and watch athletes from many different countries bring home medals.  If a country other than the US won a medal, NBC would show the event and medal ceremony.  Mind you, the US Olympic team would be highlighted, but US viewers knew other countries sometimes won the gold.

I prep for the games with a team USA inspired pedi.

This year, I have watched the games on CCTV.  CCTV (aka Central China Television) is a 22 channel, Chinese government run TV network that reaches upwards of 1 billion customers.  CCTV takes GREAT pride in the accomplishments of its motherland’s athletes.  So much pride, that it is easy to catch events that feature Chinese athletes medaling.  The three or four channels that are carrying the games have done a great job of looping footage of Chinese athletes competing in weightlifting, shooting, fencing, speed walking, Ping-Pong, and badminton competitions.  They also make watching the coverage very efficient by showing only featured athletes during the events.  There is no need to waste time with computer streaming; everything you need to see is on CCTV.

We were so inspired by the CCTV programming, that Chris and I decided to hold our own mini-version of the games, Wilcox style.  Here is a peek at our events.

Chris trains for the Wilcox Family Olympiad in Fuxing Park.

Venue:  The streets of Xuhui, and Jing’An.
Event Objective:  Race your bike through the streets of Shanghai without getting plowed down by other cyclists, motorbike riders, taxis, or busses.
Chris warms up for his Olympic ride by taking a lap around the fountain.

Results:  Chris wins the Gold, and comes home without a scratch! 

Fountain Racing
Venue: The Les Marquis Fountain
Event Objective:  Run around the fountain to wear the puppies out.  The first participant (human or canine) to cross the finish line wins.

Leia takes the early lead.
It was a tight race at the end!
Results:  Leia wins the gold.  Chris wins the silver. Ditka wins the bronze.

Sport Fishing
Venue: Jing’An Park
Event Objective:  Catch as many tadpoles as you can with an umbrella in a lotus pond.

It looks like they caught a few!

Results:  The nice Chinese family wins this round.  Sorry team Wilcox, you can’t win them all.

Venue: People’s Square Park
Event objective:  Lift all three Flintstonesque weights above the head. 
Chris lifts the lightest weights with the greatest of ease.

Round two proved to be no problem!

Spectators gather around as Chris approaches the third lift.

Will he make it? 
OH!  Not quite!

Results:  Chris gets another silver.  Much to the chagrin of his Chinese fans, he is not able to execute the most difficult lift.

Doxie Bowling
Venue:  Apartment Stadium
Event objective:  There are two objectives to this sport.  The human objective is to knock down the empty plastic bottles at the end of the hallway with a doggie ball.  The human gets 10 points for each set of bottles knocked over.  The dog objective is to intercept the ball before it hits the bottles and return it to the human.  The dog gets 10 points for each ball intercepted. 

Ditka analyzes the pin setup and determines the most efficient way to intercept the ball.

Ditka races for the interception!

Results: This event is still in progress. The current scores are:
Ditka- 1100 points
Chris- 900 points
Leia- -1000 points  (Leia loses 100 points each time she intercepts and hides the ball in my closet.  She gets tired of the attention being showered on the participants. )

Go team Wilcox!