Tag Archives: Olympics

Olympic Committee Ominously Favoring “Ruins Of New York” for 2026 Olympics

Lausanne, SWITZERLAND – The International Olympic Committee ominously announced today that the ruins of New York City is the early favorite to host the 2026 Olympic Games. “There remains time for other candidate cities or inhabitation districts to make their case, but presently the Committee is leaning towards the wreckage of New York City,” said IOC President Jacques Rogge, speaking from notes at a press conference.

“Come 2026, we will of course not have the current array of cities capable of supporting a Games. That being said, we feel that what will be left of this presently-iconic American city will be the best showcase for the 2026 Winter Games.” Rogge, flanked by an alarming level of security detail, said a wide range of factors influenced the IOC’s deliberations, among them existing infrastructure, redundancy in the electrical grid, “and of course the host’s distance from what we will all come to know as the Midnight Zone.”

Rogge said much would be clearer by the first round of voting in 2018, pausing in mid-sentence to gaze into the middle distance before resuming the press conference as if nothing had happened. “We can say that the Committee also likes what it will eventually see from the Free Zone of Buenas Yerbas. A strong case to host the Games, from an undeniably resilient people.”

The chairman went to lengths to assure the disquieted room that air purity was high on the IOC’s checklist. “We will not subject athletes or fans to a risk of contamination. Doesn’t look good if you have to replace all the athletes the following year, right?” Rogge laughed, an apparent joke appreciated only by his security detail.

The Frenchman said it was too early to answer the popular question of which sports might be added to the Games, but possibilities included foraging and Synchronized Sheltering In Place. “We can also say with certainty that the cost of the high-quality steel necessary to support an Olympic-calibur bobsled event will by then be astronomical.”

Rogge’s off-hand mention that lithium and purified drinking water would be the only acceptable forms of payment in the Olympic Village set off a cascade of panicky questions from the assembled media. “The Olympic Games symbolize mankind’s ability to unite in the face of dire obstacles and achieve greatness,” Rogge said by way of assurance. “It goes without saying that, come 2026, the world will be desperate for that spirit. So desperate. A desperation beyond words, almost beyond hope.” Rogge’s voice trailed off while he worried a ring on his finger, before regaining his composure and smiling. “We think it’s going to be an incredible Games.”

Urban Olympics II: Summer Bicycle Triathlon

Another post in the Urban Olympics series.  This morning I tested out Philadelphia’s urban bicycle triathlon course.  The Philly UBT consists of four stages and three events.  The course map is below:

Philadelphia's urban triathlon course (click for bigger view)

A primer on the Philly Urban Triathlon for the unfamiliar:

Stage 1: Time Trial (Point A to Point B on map)

Starting at Point A (21st & Pine), bike your way to Point B (15th & Pine).  The lights are timed and you must maintain a minimum speed of, oh, pretty fast, to get through them all without stopping.  One minute time penalty is assessed for every missed light.

Stage 2: Cool Down (Point B to Point C)

For this block, you reduce speed and lower your heart rate in preparation for the stop at Broad & Pine.

Stage 3: Witty Banter (Point C)

You must wait through the duration of one light at point C, during which time you make witty banter with the UArts students who hang around the corner of Broad & Pine at 8:10 in the morning.  The lower your heart rate, the wittier you will be.

Stage 4: Death Slalom (Point C to D)

For the last leg of the race, you must continue down Pine from Broad Street to 10th Street.  This stretch of pavement is atrocious, filled with more potholes, crumbled asphalt, and bad patch jobs than smooth concrete.  A popular area for taxi hailers, you must slalom between the bike lane and the car lane while avoiding taxis and moving vehicles.

Final scores are a combination of total eclipsed time and number of witticisms registered with the art types.  Automatic win if you get a phone number.

Baseball in the Olympics

A link to an article I wrote on All Swings Considered about the idea of baseball returning to the Olympics.


Jayson Stark at ESPN writes that baseball (at least involving major league players) doesn’t belong in the summer Olympics.  I disagree, and proceed to fantasize about great moments in sports involving tremendous acts of national pride which will never, ever happen.

Urban Olympics: The Biathlon

Not us

My housemates and I competed in the men’s 3ish mile urban biathlon this afternoon.  The results were as follows:

  1. Jeff, 11 hits
  2. Nicholas, 9 hits
  3. Jon, 8 hits

For those not familiar with the somewhat-arcane urban biathlon scoring rules, here is a basic overview.  You run for a while.  Then you stop, and throw 5 snowballs at a stop sign about, oh, thirty feet away.  For every  miss, you do 5 push ups.  Repeat.  The third and fourth shooting rounds are on the ground, where the biathlonlete (the technical term) does a sit-up and throws a snowball as he rises up.  The winner is the one with the most targets hit.

Alternatives involve sprinting to the target and back once for each miss while the rest of the field is allowed to continue on the course.  This variation is more popular with people who enjoy sprinting.