Citius, Altius, FortiusPosted: February 14, 2010
It’s time, once again, for the Olympics. I’m a huge fan. Huge fan. One of my hobbies is short-track speedskating, which I do at a rink not too far from my home (Santa Clarita Speedskating). Love it. For sixteen days every four years in winter (and again in summer), I am queen of the Tivo. Queen. Did I mention that I love the Olympics?
I do not, however, love the US-centric broadcasting. Nor, truly, the male-centered focus. I especially resent like hell the fact that, although I am on the west coast of the US, The very same time zone in which the events are happening, I cannot view them real-time. I am, at least as far as NBC is concerned, not bright enough to figure out that, while watching something at 8:30 pm, it’s miraculously sunny and mid-day in Vancouver, B.C.
No problem, I thought. The summer games were covered nearly 24/7. I should be able to put my exceedingly pricey television/dish service to good use and pull the “east coast feeds” (let’s not forget that I am, REALLY on the same coast as the ACTUAL Games, but…whatever). Nope. No access to east coast feeds. I called my “service” provider. Short of a letter from the Pope, I’m out of luck.
In fact, my conversation with the “service” provider (SP) went thus:
SP: Thank you for being a longtime customer. As such, you’re eligible for a sports package upgrade.
Me: Well, that’s handy. I’m calling to see about being able to access the east coast feeds of the Olympics, will the sports package allow this?
SP: (long pause). Er…the winter Olympics?
Me: Yeeess (drawn out in disbelief)
SP: Um, hang on. (Extremely long pause of approx 2 min). Oh, I see you’re getting the NBC channels now, so you should be able to see what is broadcast.
Me: (Deep breath). Yes. However, I live on the west coast of the US and have to wait six or more hours to see things happening in my same time zone. Can I, with my “well earned” sports package upgrade get access to the east coast feeds?
SP: I’ll check. (Hold music, occasional humming) Well, you see, if you were to watch the east coast feeds, you would be seeing commercials for local companies back east. None of that would pertain to you.
Me: Well, that’s okay, I mute all the idiotic commercials anyway. (Pause). Wait. They don’t sell Coke, Dove Soap, Kelloggs, Audi’s or Chrysler’s in New York?
SP: I…I think so. Let me ask a supervisor.
Me: (immediately sensing this is not going my way). No, that’s okay. So…I’m out of luck, right?
SP: Well, you can get the sports package upgrade.
Me: Okay. What will that get me?
SP: Oh, we can get you great coverage of major league baseball, including coverage of the training camps.
Me: How does that help me with the Olympics?
SP: You mean the winter ones?
Me: May I ask, just how old are you?
SP: (confused) I’m sorry, sir? (I guess she forgot the part where she called me Mrs… earlier in our chat, despite my correcting her that it’s “Ms.” Twice)
Me: Oh, for cryin’ out loud. Have a nice day. (hang up).
Sigh. What is the world coming to? Last words on the Olympics for today’s post. First, the Luge. If they’d had that damned wall up on Friday, that young man would most likely be alive today. And, as patriotic as I am, I was crushed (though clearly not as much as she was) that Jenn Heil of Canada was edged out by Hannah Kearney. The pressure that young woman (Heil) was under by the media and her countrymen, and mostly herself, must have been phenomenal. Jenn, I was rooting for you from the get-go and your poise and grace afterward amazed me.
Yes, the doctorate is still happening. I’m plugging along. For some reason (and it’s not just me, my colleagues have mentioned it too), I’m having a helluva time getting my head back into the game this term. I’ve got a huge paper due this week, along with a group project, and I’m…ugh.
Tonight: Olympics while writing my paper.
Update…YAY!!!! Canada has won gold in Men’s mogul!!!