The Olympics: Dreams, Heroes & Cbs This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

By
   The Olympics: Dreams, Heroes, & CBS

by A. G., Brookline, MA

I'm watching Elvis Stojko, the Canadian figure skater, during the exhibition part of the Olympics. He's really cool, I'm thinking, as I watch him do a triple jump. He won't perform on Olympic ice for four years. The Olympics will be over tomorrow, and I'm sorry. I enjoy the Olympics, as most people do.

Many heroes have emerged during these two weeks in Lillehammer, Norway. Not heroes in the sense that they have saved someone from danger, or changed the world in any great way, but rather they're just extraordinary athletes, who have made their countries proud.

Dan Jansen finally got a gold and made us proud. Bonnie Blair ("Everyone's little sister") got her fifth gold medal. Torvill and Dean came back and made us smile once again. Nancy Kerrigan beat the odds and won a silver medal and Oksana Baiul won the gold at the age of 16. Hoss ("the boss"), of Norway, won a gold medal. Katarina Witt made us remember Sarajevo. Others captured the hearts of the world and sometimes, even a gold medal.

However, the Olympics weren't all fun and games. Money was involved. Money was the main reason why Tonya Harding went. Money was why CBS got to show us the Games, and showed them during prime time. Money even played a part in which sports would be played which days.

One of the most annoying things about the Olympics was how CBS tried to ruin it for us, for the ratings war, by showing the action hours after the results were known. On top of that, they showed about an hour of commercials for every hour of taped footage.

I was forced to listen to the radio, if I wanted to hear what happened as it was happening. That's technological advancement!

CBS made every athlete's life into a soap opera. Oksana Baiul has lived a life of misery. Nancy and Tonya face off on the ice (although it was hardly a face off, with Nancy finishing second and Tonya eighth.) Dan Jansen strives for a gold medal that has eluded him so many times. Instead of the winner just being the extraordinary athlete, the winner became a hero.

Sadly enough, I'm sure that CBS made a bundle. They paid a bundle, and so they needed to make a bundle. Which means showing it how and when the most people will watch it.

Despite what CBS did to try to ruin Olympic viewing, the Olympics went on. People went to the Olympics with big goals and dreams of the gold, and those dreams were fulfilled for a fraction of the participants.

This was a good year for the United States. We won many medals. We saw many people on Olympic ice that we never thought we would see again, from the United States and other countries. Torvil and Dean, Brian Boitano, Victor Petrenko, Katarina Witt and others. That was for two reasons. First, the winter Olympics were only two years after the last ones, and so many athletes hung around for another try. Also, people who had gone professional were allowed back, so we saw many old favorites.

Many happy events occurred during the Olympics. My personal favorite was Dan Jansen's gold medal in speed skating. A perfect ending for a great athlete. Katarina Witt came from Germany to have a good time, and from the looks of her smile, she did. Her parents saw her competing on Olympic ice for the first time. Another happy moment. Oksana Baiul, who had lost so much in 16 years, won a gold in four minutes of beautiful skating. And although Elvis Stojko wasn't crowned king with a gold medal, he skated ... uniquely. He is really fun to watch. Look for him in '98.

It's been a nice two weeks. And I can't wait to see what CBS has planned for us in Atlanta, Georgia, in two years. I'll re-measure the fluff content then, and see if the ratio has changed. Meanwhile, we can all go back to our regularly scheduled sitcoms. If we're lucky, we'll even start seeing some real news, instead of soap opera fluff.


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






Post a Comment

Be the first to comment on this article!

bRealTime banner ad on the left side
Site Feedback