Zionsville Times Sentinel

Commentary

February 5, 2014

Watching for the winter gold

The XXII Olympic games start this Friday in Sochi. I will be watching but not as avidly as some. As a person who isn't overly fond of the cold, it shouldn't be a surprise that I much prefer the summer games over winter. Still, there is something to be said about watching athletes risk life and limb for a medal.

I found the schedule of events, because it seems that mostly all we see on television is figure skating. I prefer ski jumping and bobsledding. My favorite winter game is curling, which is almost never televised.

New this year is that women are allowed to compete in ski jumping. I am so excited to see that. When I was younger, I always loved that event but never got to see girls doing it.

Among the 15 sports this year is something called "skeleton." I cannot imagine anyone thinking this sport is a good idea, but I will watch if for no other reason than I won't be able to look away. According to www.sochi2014.com, skeleton "originates from athletes that descended down the mountains in a toboggan . . . common among Canadian Indians."

Today's skeleton is for both men and women, and involves a track of frozen ice that athletes speed down, headfirst, on a sled with steel runners. Headfirst?

See Wednesday's Times Sentinel for the full story.

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