Pop Culture Junkette

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Friday, February 26, 2010

Olympics 2010, Thursday, Feb. 25

Today I watched:
Skiing, women's cross-country, 4x5000m relay
Ice hockey, women's, USA vs. Canada, gold medal game
Skiing, women's giant slalom, run 2
Nordic combined, men's large hill
Skiing, men's aerials
Figure skating, women's free skate

Wow. The Olympics are quickly drawing to a close, and I guess there aren't all that many events left. I have mixed feelings about this--one the one hand, I love the Olympics, but on the other, I am becoming absolutely exhausted. It's difficult to watch so many events on a daily basis.

Today was an easier day than most. The women's figure skating was the main event, and the top competitors all skated pretty clean programs. It's always so nice when everyone lands their jumps and they are all judged on their best performances. Canada's Joannie Rochette was the story of the night (and perhaps the entire Olympics), as she skated her short program two days after her mother's unexpected death and her long program just two days after that, earning a bronze medal. Japan's Mao Asada might have been the saddest story of the night, as she looked absolutely devastated after winning a silver medal. She reminded me of Midori Ito after the 1992 Olympics, apologizing to Japan for getting a silver rather than a gold.

I was expecting to watch the entire gold medal women's hockey game, but I wasn't home in time to catch the beginning and had forgotten to record it, so I only watched the third period. I fear the men's gold medal game will have the same competitors and the same outcome, but I guess we can hope otherwise.

I think it's interesting that the scores for the two runs in aerials are added to determine placement, while in half-pipe only the best of two runs counts. I would have thought the scoring would be similar between the two events. I prefer the half-pipe scoring system, because it doesn't discourage the competitors from trying a riskier, more exciting program. I was glad that Jeret (oops, I mean Speedy) Peterson went for the more difficult jump in his second run, even though doing so four years ago may have cost him a medal. It was great that this time he was rewarded with a silver.

Tomorrow is a slightly more active day: slalom, speedskating, curling, bobsled and, of course, the hockey semi-finals.

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