It’s Winter Olympics time and this past weekend I got to see Huck, our Boston Terrier, compete in the short track speed skating.
On weekend mornings, it is typical that I rise around 6:30 a.m., make the coffee, get the breakfast goodies out and ready to make breakfast then feed the dog. As Huck prefers to eat before exiting the house to do his morning business, he is often in a hurry to get from the food bowl to the backyard.
On Sunday morning, after sleeping in a little later, Huck was in fifth gear as he sprinted through the open door to our deck. Our deck had about a quarter-inch of ice on it.
It was just enough ice to send poor Huck skating, spinning and twirling towards the stairs where he bumped into the chimney, came to a skidding halt, regained his cool and carefully made his way into the yard. It was hilarious.
Nothing is more fun than watching a Boston Terrier freak out and for a couple of seconds, Huck was a combinations speed skater and figure skater – and totally freaked out.
I had to pick myself up off the floor. I was laughing so hard I was unable to drink my coffee for a few minutes.
But Huck the speed skater was more entertaining than Huck the figure skater. As in watching the Olympics, I wanted to see how quickly he could get to the edge of the deck, not how many twirls and spins he could do on his way there.
In other words, give me speed skating over figure skating any day.
Don’t get me wrong and don’t send me irate email, figure skaters are amazing athletes. They have amazing skating skills, speed, stamina and plenty of courage. If you haven’t seen figure skating live, you have been fooled by television when it comes to their speed – figure skaters have to build plenty of speed in order to do a triple-twisting-turning whatever it’s called.
Figure skaters are amazing – just wake me up when it’s over.
Speed skating and, of course, and downhill skiing are much more preferred at my house. A good luge wreck, at 68 mph, now and again, is always more fun to watch – not likely to participate in – than watching figure skating.
My son-in-law, knowing that we were somewhat iced in on Sunday realized we were watching the same 30-kilometer cross country ski race, and could not help but verbalize what most Alabama born-and-raised men would normally ask while watching such an event: “Have they lost their minds? They are going uphill on skis, then downhill, then across flat terrain, then they take a bunch of turns before they go uphill again. I just don’t understand what would possess anyone to make them want to do this.”
Well, yeah. Unless you live in Norway and have little but flat roads and plenty of snow.
I am generally a fan of the Norwegians in the winter Olympics. After rooting for the USA, who wouldn’t want to root for the permanent underdog?
Norway has a population of a little more than 5.2 million – fewer people than the State of Missouri. And it snows 11 months each year in Norway.
I imagine they have little to do all day – like us when we were iced in this past weekend – unless they strap on the cross country skis or hop on their luge sled and head out into the blizzard – which explains their Nordic sports expertise.
Then they head home, sit in their sauna and contemplate how nice their two-week spring/summer will be this July.
Watching the USA medalists in the snowboarding events is awe-inspiring as the gymnasts on the snow complete their aerial routines. It’s fantastic.
The Boston Terriers, while less practiced on ice, are just as entertaining.