After the semifinals of the men’s 110-meter hurdles in Tokyo, eventual silver medalist Grant Holloway talked in an NBC interview about the challenge of sitting around the Olympic Village, waiting for what seemed like an eternity for his chance to take his spot on the grandest stage in athletics.
The specifics of this pandemic Olympiad makes it a particularly tough situation, but really this is nothing new for Holloway, who, a couple of years ago, talked about trying other track events because, “My focus is going to be on the 110 hurdles, but I know how I am, and I get bored.”
Athletes only spend so much time competing at the Olympics, and there’s only so much time that one can spend having that storied Olympic Village sex. Plus, we only get a few glimpses of some of these great athletes — we meet them, they compete, and then that’s it. See you at the closing ceremony, if you’re still in town for it.
In other years, where there’s not a mandate to get the next flight out of town once an athlete is done with their events, we need a parallel event for the Olympics, a sort of competitive green room to allow athletes who are either done competing, or waiting to compete to have some more fun, for fans the world over to get to spend more time enjoying these incredible humans, and to really build the cross-border comity that the Olympics are supposed to be about.
There are still hours of the day that CNBC is talking about stocks instead of showing the fifth-best available competition. We need to change that as soon as possible. It’s time for the Olympic Games to embrace the “Games” part of their name. Submitted for Paris 2024, these are 10 events that we need to see, although of course more are welcome.