Saturday, August 16, 2008

The World's Only Michael Phelps Critique

You may not have heard that Michael Phelps is tied for the claim of most successful olympian of all time, having won seven gold medals. Perhaps you're in a coma. Or else maybe you're deaf-blind (in which case: why not consider cochlear implants?).

Not to take anything away from Phelps and his achievement, but swimmers participate in more events, and so have a shot of winning more medals. So he's vying for more of a swimming record than a bona fide olympic record. The media never point this out, of course, because they must flog their star who keeps audiences coming back and viewing ads.

If I were a champion shot putter or marathoner who'd beaten my competitors by a wide margin to win the single medal for which I was eligible, I'd be put off by all the attention on a swimmer who tends to win by fractions of an instant.

1 comment:

spedteacher said...

Agreed, but there is something to be said for versatility. While Phelps' medals are all in swimming, there is as much difference between the breast stroke and the butterfly as there is between running a dash and running hurdles, or the difference between playing a slide trombone and a trumpet.

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