Friday, July 29, 2016

WTF Rio? - US Athlete writes: Dear Olympic Media- Please Change The Narrative

US Olympic Athlete asks media to lighten up, Francis.

Megan Kalmoe- US Olympic Rowing Team-

(Pic by Megan Kalmoe via ESPN)
I will be traveling to Rio as part of one of the most talented and decorated women’s rowing squads in history.  I am incredibly excited for this trip, and this opportunity.  I have worked for ten years to get to this point and will continue to work as hard as I can over the next few weeks to make the most of this very special and unique opportunity.
But all you want to do is talk about shit in the water.
My request to everyone who is fixated on shit in the water:
Stop trying to ruin the Olympics for us.

She really makes an excellent point- The media really just wants the Bleeding Edge headlines.
I will grant you that during the Olympics there are so many athlete stories and profiles that you get sick of them, but seriously- right now it is all "ZOMG-Shit in the water! OMG Favela killings!! Corruption! OMG - Unfinished Athlete Village!" ad infinitum.

Megan makes an excellent point... It would be nice if they could dial it back and talk about the positives.
But they don't.
And they won't.
And it's frustrating for the people who have dedicated so much of their lives to their sports on behalf of our country.

Another money quote:
Think of it this way: every time you sensationalize the poor water quality, or try to get athletes to react to Zika, or chastise the Brazilian people for allowing their government to collapse, you’re not just insulting the Brazilian people. You’re also insulting us, your American athletes.  Every time someone asks an athlete who is not a sociologist, epidemiologist, ecologist, microbiologist, or entomologist their position on water quality or some other crappy negative topic, they’re telling us:
“I care more about your non-expert opinion on these issues than I do on your performance in Rio.”  But –But–
There is no but.
You’re not being helpful, and it’s not coming from a good place.
Olympic athletes are experts on one thing, and one thing only: our performance.  And you damn well know it.  Every time you ask us to shift our focus from our specialty during the one time in a four-year cycle that we get the opportunity to share our expertise with the world, it’s an unnecessary distraction that we as competitors do not need and should not have to deal with from people who are supposed to be on our side.
Every time you steer the conversation away from the athletes and competition and on to things that are outside of our control, you’re suggesting to us: “I think you should probably waste some of your energy worrying about this, don’t you?”
That’s not helping anyone to be faster or perform better in Rio, so why would you do it?  It seems a little mean-spirited and like you don’t care if we do well.  Or that you somehow think that we should not enjoy our trip to the Olympics...

Really- you should go read the whole thing.
She eloquently makes many excellent points.

Also check out the profile ESPN did on her.
It's not easy to be an Olympian...Here.

TBG - Live from the IBC.


Angus McThag said...

Here's a narrative:

Sports don't matter. Devote not a moment of your life to them.

The best sports can possibly be is fun exercise. If you're not having fun and you're not getting exercise, don't do it.

Athletes are just another form of dancing monkey and I don't care what they have to say on any topic. Not even their sport, because it doesn't matter!

Old NFO said...

Interesting... Thanks!