By Becky Moore
Just before leaving my full-time position as the grant writer and public affairs officer for a non-profit organization providing housing, medication, and supportive services for folks living with HIV/AIDS, I was on the panel that interviewed and hired the new Director of Housing. He was a crowd pleaser … big and broad and incredibly sexy. A brick shithouse kind of man with carved shoulders as sharp as Michelangelo’s David. A little moody, a lot stand-offish, and a quiet introvert. He and I worked really well together because we didn’t manage each other, weren’t on the same team, and he could let his guard down with my married self. He was a sprinter, and training for the Olympics. Oh, yeah.
I was disheartened to learn last month that he’d been injured and unable to attend the final preliminary trials, but am happy to have been a peripheral part of his journey for the last three years. My son is a soccer player and a runner, and loved to talk to James about how to make his body work more efficiently. Our family is really active, but our son has runs circles around my soul mate and I. Plus, who wants to listen to your mom talk about high school Varsity soccer, or college intermural soccer when you have a real, live quasi-Olympian? Geesh.
It was learning to think about his body as a machine, a tool for his trade of fast footwork that helped our son figure out that stretching out is a benefit; jogging in between soccer practice and games is a good thing; and hydrating well is next to godliness. It’s a mindset, for sure.
We don’t typically watch sports on television, but the Olympics are different. When do you get to watch Dressage, synchronized diving, water polo, beach volleyball, skeet shooting, javelin throwing, and rowing in the same day? It’s great. But then again, when do you get to see world-class, high-powered, super-fit men and women athletes crammed together in one general location? Only at the Olympics.
I first tuned in to the Olympic Village sex scene about six years ago when I started my job at AAS-C (the HIV/AIDS organization). The Prevention Education department was one of my favorite group of people to work with because not only were they the frontline community defense against the spread of HIV disease … if you don’t have HIV disease, then you need to know how to NOT get it; and if you have it, then you need to know how to NOT spread it … but they always had the best stories and toys. Because they ordered condoms and packets of lubrication in the hundreds of thousands each year, they were like the superstars of the Trojan world. And after the Beijing Summer Olympics in 2008, we fought over the cool posters that came in the condom packaging. Turns out the extracurricular activities at the Olympic Village share Las Vegas’ credo: what happens at the Village stays at the Village.
No matter what your type, the Olympic Village can cater to it, providing the best physical examples on earth," the former British male athlete claimed in his book.
If you haven’t seen them, you’re probably not alone. I worked in the industry and had no idea about them, or the Olympic condom situation. Well, could be it’s because I’ve been married since 1994 and our relationship is monogamous, and condoms are so not on our radar. The ads were great fun, but the statistics are so much better. Think the athletes are chaste virgins? Nope. They’re animals in the prime of their physical development. Ripped, raring and ready to go. Thank goodness for condoms, because all of the games are inevitable.
But the image of a celibate Games began to flicker in '92 when it was reported that the Games' organizers had ordered in prophylactics like pizza. Then, at the 2000 Sydney Games, 70,000 condoms wasn't enough, prompting a second order of 20,000 and a new standing order of 100,000 condoms per Olympics.
I find I prefer the debauchery. I mean, it’s pretty amazing to see Michael Phelps flying through the water, surging ahead of his international competition. But it’s the possibility of a glimpse of those abs and oblique’s that hold my eyes glued to the boob tube. Seriously. Good grief, is there anything more disappointing than thinking Phelps goes back to his room and plays Pinochle every night?
Here are some interesting articles. Maybe they’ll set you on the path to a more streamlined, active self. If you could play at the Olympic Village, it would be worth a couple of sit-ups, huh?