Aug 20, 2008

Written by Ari Taub

August 19, 2008

I keep meaning to post pictures and videos from the last few weeks. my competition is over but it seems like i am still busy. Sarah was here with me until yesterday and we went to the great wall. we also went and watched track several times. I saw bolt break the 100m world record which was pretty fun. Sarah enjoyed the woman’s 10k which to most people is like watching paint dry but to a distance runner is great fun. We also went shopping at silk road which is a big bazaar in which you can bargain for almost anything. My house will now be a little more full. last night i went to ‘bud’ house – imagine red carpet entrance, free beer and many ladies in great shape most of whom had too much free beer. michael phelps had a section blocked off for his friends. evander hollyfield was there as well. a good time was had by most.  I took a cab back to the village with 2 brits. one was chris hoy [sp?] who won 3 gold medals in track cycling and the other was a journalist who wrote a book on british cycling. Apparently the guy is writing a new chapter for a special edition related to the 2008 olympics and he promised to mention our cab ride which was quite interesting – we were driving around beijing at 4 am and the taxi was going very slow. it also stopped to ask every other cab how to get to the village. you gotta love it when the cabie doesn’t know where to go.

The olympic village is an interesting place. when we got here most people were a little nervous about their upcoming competition. Then people compete and virtually all of them are disappointed with the outcome. only a very small percentage of people win olympic gold. Someone pointed out to me that the olympics are about losing and i think he was correct. Most athletes here are disappointed and trying to figure out how it was that they dedicated their lives to becoming great in their sport with the culmination being a loss at the olympics followed by obscurity [ and maybe mounting debt] at home. Some will over time realize that the process of becoming an olympian is the valuable part – the lessons learned and obstacles overcome being much more important over time than the official result. this process may take some time and many will feel depressed that participation in the olympics – rather than the journey – didn’t change their life.

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