Saturday, August 23, 2008

One World One Dream

I like the slogan of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games; it's positive. Today is the final day and IMHO the Chinese have been very successful as the host country. They've also been very successful as participants, garnering the most Gold medals. The U.S. has the most overall medals but which is more important??? FYI, Japan has the 8th most Gold medals which is not so bad considering it's the 10th most populated country in the world. Note: More than 200 countries took part in these XXlX Olympic Games.

"Citius, Altius, Fortius" became the Olympic Motto in 1894, the date of the IOC's creation. This means faster, higher, stronger in Latin. Basically it means that giving your best is the goal at the Olympics and in life. And we did see some spectacular performances! Bolt's 2 new world-records in both sprint events were amazing. But to me, Michael Phelps' new record of 8 Gold medals in swimming is by far the most impressive achievement of these games. BTW, may I brag about my own swimming record? I hold the Niigata Masters Meet record in the 25 meter freestyle (12.56 seconds). :)

The Summer Olympic Games are always a treat for me. Out of the 28 sports, 3 are my favorites: basketball, swimming and tennis. One sad thing for me though was that I could not watch one single game of basketball as Japanese TV didn't deem it worthwhile. I guess I can understand as Japan didn't field a team but I would have loved to see Kobe, Lebron and the rest of the "Redeem Team" in action. As I write, they are playing and I imagine on their way to the Gold medal that Team USA promised to deliver after sub-par performances in the 2004 Games and recent World Games.

My final thoughts are that although these games cost an astronomical amount of money to hold, they are worth it. They bring the people of the world together. This breaks down barriers and helps us understand each other. It also brings the people of a country closer together as they get behind their team to cheer and share the agony of defeat along with the elation of winning or placing. It also motivates us regular people to do our best and to keep playing the sports we love and maybe even start a new one.
It's been about a year now that Aki and I started tennis lessons and we have both moved up from beginners to "high" beginners, haha. I figure when my basketball days are over that tennis will become my main sport. However, I do hope to be like my dad and play organized basketball into my 60's! Of course, I'll also have to take up golf once I get into my 50's. :)