What’s not happening right now is our wonderful Olympians are not bringing home the medals that they thought they would and we expected they should.
So what’s going on over there? Has the pressure just become too much? The expectation of a nation weighing heavily on their shoulders preventing them from taking full lift off? Or has someone been smuggling in a few too many chip butties into the Olympic village?
Whatever is going on, I think it’s time we had a long hard look at ourselves when it comes to our reputation for being a little on the bad sport side of things.
Yes I know this won’t go down well with many of you who have settled in on the couch for a couple of weeks, life currently on hold, swearing at your TV sets, but the fact is, other nations have noticed that we’re not the face of humble whether we’re winning or losing Olympic gold.
An English friend of mine, who’s lived here for well over a decade said to me the other day, “I tell you what, watch the Aussie’s very quickly pretend the Olympics isn’t happening when they don’t pick up the medals they’re used to getting.”
It reminded me of back in the Atlanta Olympic days when I was living here with an English boyfriend. We were both so excited about the games kicking off and affectionately ready to tear strips off each other as we supported our relevant nations, but it never quite happened.
The reason why it never happened was because the English, nor any other country barely rated a mention in our coverage at the time. We were on a Kieren Perkins, Daniel Kowalski roll and we were combusting as a nation. Which is all very well, and no he was never going to get an English coverage version of the games, but they had a few good wins too but it didn’t rate a flicker. Aren’t we supposed to be friends?
I am an Aussie and I get why we’re so proud to the point of tortured, sport has always been our big thing that we can compete on in the world stage when many other times we go ignored.
We’re not a huge nation in population and we like to think we’re all powerful because we have tough mates like the Americans, but let’s be honest, we’re really not.
However when we’ve got a swim cap on, or a cricket bat in our hands, we can strike a chord of fear. But we need to tone it down and get back to being good sports that are good at sport.
Winning is an honour and not something we should just expect, There is so much to enjoy out of not knowing whether we’ll make it onto the podium.
I didn’t win any friends when I mentioned years ago when I cricketers started to lose in a big way; I said I thought it was great that finally the English were giving us a kick up the bum. Because we’d become arrogant, and we needed to re-group on the ego nation front.
Whilst I feel enormously sorry for those gorgeous kids over there competing for our country and for themselves, having to deal with an avalanche of disappointment, but each one of these losses can be a great example to show our kids that we know how to lose. And lose with grace.
This is an opportunity for us to really unite as a nation and prove how much we love sport. Loving sport is supporting and barracking your butt off not knowing who will win. Showing our kids that there are so many levels to the process of becoming number one.
If I had a dollar for every time I’ve read the word FAIL since the games began? Is that a word tantrum or what?