The Pandemic Olympics – Tokyo, Japan 2021

Everything remained on hold. That was back in the day when there was nothing better than sitting up all night glued to the telly watching the Olympic Games. It was cause for a big celebration, lots of rowdiness, toasting bread on an open fire, drinking hot alcoholic bevies and arguing with family members about all things Olympics. They shifted the starting line. You call that sport? That’s not his personal best. That sort of thing. It was a great way to decimate two weeks of winter every Olympic year which coincidentally was always a leap year. But the pandemic has changed that.  

The pandemic got in the way

The 2020 Games kicked off on 23 July 2021. They were postponed for twelve months to give the world time to abate the pandemic and the athletes time to refine their individual performances. While this was going on Covid-19 was working her way through the Greek alphabet looking for names for her new strains. Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Zeta, Eta, Theta. Most of us were unaware of all these strains. But then came Delta, the most dangerous, deadly strain of all currently pole vaulting around the world.

But the Games went ahead anyway

Tokyo, the Olympic City has been declared a state of emergency for the whole Olympic period. That means all shops, bars and restaurants are closed except for takeaways. All citizens must stay home. Athletes must not leave the Olympic Village. Despite that, Delta is sharing her evil virus amongst the locals (and others) at the rate of over 4 000 infections a day. Naturally most Japanese citizens wanted to postpone the Games again. But who cared about them? The Games went ahead anyway.

There were plenty of idiots amongst the world’s top athletes – as usual

In fact, Delta has caused some shifty behaviour amongst the athletes. They blame her for the cardboard anti sex beds. Nine Israeli athletes took out their revenge on a poor defenceless bed and jumped on it until it broke. Good on the boys for showing some maturity there. At least they didn’t leave the confines of the Olympic Village like the five Aussie hockey players who headed into downtown Tokyo to buy beer. They needed some commiseration fluid after their heartbreaking loss to Belgium.

Waves or no waves – who really cares?

Aside from those dramas, surfing made its debut in the Games of 2020. I tried to show an interest but then discovered it was dependant on the size of the waves at Tsurigasaki Surfing Beach. Already feeling despondent I knew that God wouldn’t come up with the goods, so I didn’t bother.

Finally my spirits were lifted – thanks Peter Bol

Still feeling that I could barely bring myself to watch the Games, along came Peter Bol, Australia’s first runner to qualify for the 800 metres final since 1968.  Although he didn’t win a medal, he said that his goal was to inspire a nation. Well, he certainly inspired me.

But really, the only winner is Delta

The Olympics have almost come to an end. But there’ll be no painting the town red because nothing is open. There’ll be no waving to the crowds because there won’t be any. And as far as I’m concerned, the only winner has been Delta.

Image: Peter Bol, Facebook . Thankyou Peter



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