What I love about the Olympics is the unity of Americans during each and every competition and sport. It’s the rare occasion where Orioles and Yankees fans or Ravens and Steelers fans can put aside their orange or pinstripes or purple or
gold mustard yellow and cheer for the same team. Our team.
It’s part of the reason that I love the World Cup as well.
I’ll never call out a fan of the Olympics for being a homer or only watching these crazy competitions every four years, because that’s exactly what the rest of the country does. And in this rare instance, I’m all for it.
What fascinates me about this year’s Olympics is America’s obsession with Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt. The track star has been in SportsCenter commercials and is talked about just as much in the U.S. as he is any where else. In fact, I think most Americans are rooting for Usain Bolt.
Sunday night, Bolt repeated as the 100 meter champion, setting an Olympic record by completing the run in 9.63 seconds and beating his effort in Beijing. The race was must watch TV (or internet if you wanted to see it live) and everyone tuned in to watch Bolt bolt down the track.
I’m all for watching the best athletes, but I do admit that I feel a bit strange rooting for a guy who isn’t wearing the red, white and blue. Watching people rally around Usain Bolt reminds me of the way people used to tune into Tiger Woods’ matches on Sunday during his heyday. But Bolt is from Jamaica.
The Michael Phelps fever has been particularly fan to be a part of both in Beijing and London, not only because he’s a dominant American athlete, but also because he’s from Baltimore. That love fest was easy to be a part of.
Are Americans rooting for Bolt or are we all so enamored with what he’s able to do out on the track? I can get behind the latter, but I want to see the U.S. win the medal count and can’t get behind cheering for anyone outside of the U.S.