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Today in My History

2001: Standing in the Shadows
2002: Moving Day
2003: Think of Me Fondly
2004: Lassie
2005Grief Work

2006: The Rest of the Story
2007Being Inadequate Again
2008: Do I have to Join the NRA?
2009: The Art (and Frustration) of the Interview!
2010: Solving the Country's Problem
2011: The Road to Wellville
Pooh Bah and the Pill
2013: Sunday Stealing

Bitter Hack
Updated: 1
Elemeno Pea

Books Read in 2014
"The Days of Anna Madrigal"

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Ernest & Vanessa's Visit

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Airy Persiflage

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mail to Walt


10 February 2014

I've been reading a lot on the internet from people who are disguested and who are boycotting the Olympics.  Most are boycotting because of Putin's stance on homosexuals, and the continuing reports showing people being beaten and jailed around Russia this week in protests of Putin's policies is certainly a valid reason not to do anything that would put Putin (and maybe not even Russia) in a good light.

Others are boycotting because the NBC coverage focuses so heavily on American athletes and does not show the full event.  Or they are upset that it is such a media circus, which it certainly is.

Well, I gave this thing a lot of thought and I am watching the Olympics, or the events that interest me.

The athletes who have earned the right to compete are not showing support for Putin's bigoted policies.  I know that the American Olympic committee gave thought to boycotting the event, but just imagine  that you are an athlete who has devoted your life, training to be good enough to compete and then some bonehead comes out with an odious political statement.  Do you throw all that training away?   How about your parents who have paid for your coaches for all those years, expecting to see you on that medal stand at the Olympics?  It is certainly not their fault that Putin is a bigot (LOL..my fingers typed "that Bonehead is a bigot."   Maybe my fingers know better than I do!)

What about the athletes who are getting older and next year will probably be too old to be at the top of their game?  Do we punish them because of Putin and deprive them of their last shot at Olympic glory?

OK...how about the media hype.  The media will hype anything.   A state funeral will have its media hype, which shouldn't be blamed on the deceased.  Media hype is not the fault of the athletes.  It's the fault of the media (and those of us who buy the products advertised and give implicit permission for them to continue to hype it).  Because we are sick of the media hype does that mean the athletes don't deserve our support.

And then there is that TV coverage of it. I suppose some like it, some hate it.  I'm upset about some things that have been "cleaned up" on the political side of things in deference to concentrating on performers. But that should not have an impact on the performers themselves.  All those fresh young faces, so excited to just be a part of things

Some have said they are upset that we are covering only US athletes.   I don't know what that person has been watching.  Everything I have seen seems to offer lots of background and information on non-US performers.  No, they don't cover all of the athletes in some of the larger events, but they concentrate on the top 5 or so, whether they are US athletes or from some other country.  (Right now I am watching an American interview with the entire Russian skating team, including Evgeni Plushenko giving a big thank you to Putin.)

When I decided to watch the Olympics, I felt sort of guilty, especially after reading the reasons why people are boycotting them.  I did give up on the opening ceremonies, mostly because it was just downright boring and didn't hold my interest at all.  But when I gave it thought and  realized that the big story here is the athletes and not all the stuff surrounding it, then I allowed myself to wash away the guilt and just enjoy it.

So far it has been enjoyable watching it, and I'm so glad I got a chance to see little 15 year old Julia Lipnitskala's breathtaking solo program.

Without giving anything away, I have to record that I was so rattleld by the end of tonight's episode of Downton Abbey that I very nearly went to Amazon.com to watch the next episode, which I know I can find there.  In my 60+ years of watching television, I don't ever remember being as affected by a plot point as I am with this one.

It was November when I decided to sponsor a child through World Vision.  The child lives in a "sensitive area" and so we are cautioned not to publish either the name of our sponsored child or any photos.  I have been waiting all this time to get the first letter and yesterday something finally came.

It was not exactly exciting (see Photo of the Day).  It's a stand-up thing you're supposed to fold into a figure you can put on your desk (if you can find room for it!).  It has the child's signature and "2014" on it.  That's it.   I hope that means that a real letter will be coming soon.


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First message from World Vision child.

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