Olympic thoughts

Kathryn Aegis (aegis@igc.apc.org)
Thu, 5 Feb 1998 23:36:41 +0000

In that most ancient of nations, Japan, the stage is again set for
humans who would push themselves to the utmost physical and mental
ability, to set modern records for endurance and performance.

Onbashira and dohyoiri rituals harken back to the beginnings of
history to cleanse the evil spirits and create the sacred space for
competition primed by the latest in nutrition, fitness and
technology. The portals of the temple erected in the circle become
the passage for television cameras and athletes clad in the most up
to date equipment.

The athletes march in groups defined by national boundaries, and
the hopes of their home countries go with them. Though each athlete
wears the flag of his or her own country, once the torch is lit, the
competition becomes athlete vs. athlete, athlete vs. individual
limits, athlete vs. human limits. Not every athlete will walk away
with a medal, but who can say that any have failed?

Bring on the hockey (and the popcorn!)