The Fastest Three Minutes in Swimming

The other three owe the balding due big time. Getty Images.

The other three owe the balding dude big time. Getty Images.

Some, but not all, of my thoughts from the first few days of the 2008 Beijing Olympics:

-How many kinds of butt did that freestyle 400m relay kick? My God. I thought the French had it and were going to be right about “smashing” the Americans, or whatever they said. But no, near the end, the 32-year-old Jason Lezak, who’s the oldest guy on the American swim team, comes back and just outtouches the French anchor. I was taunting the French through my tiny 13-inch TV monitor (I need a bigger TV). And wondering if Michael Phelps’ swimsuit was going to fall down. I was split on if I wanted this to happen. Yeah, he’s really built, but I get the feeling sex with him would be like sex with a dolphin. Which, not to judge, I’m really not into. But enough about Phelps-I want to see more from this Lezak guy. I hope some talk show books him, because good lord, what a story.

-Katie Hoff just lost the gold earlier in the night (morning), and that really bummed me out. But while I would rather have her and the relay team get gold, if I had to pick one, I would have picked the relay guys.

-The Chinese gymnasts obviously have some underage girls. I don’t know if I agree with Bela Karolyi that we should just not have an age limit whatsoever since it’s apparently so easy to get around, but they’re obviously underage. Some of em look maybe 12. Which is what I’m afraid of-all these girls are ridiculously young to face such pressure, but the most I’d feel comfortable going down to is 14, which was what it was at the 1996 games. Even then, I’m not sure. The window for world-class gymnasts is so tiny it’s ridiculous.

-But the American girls have had to deal with lots of injuries and bad luck, and are second going into the team final. Which turns out to be Tuesday night in America but Wednesday in China. I was confused, because of the way it’s listed on the NBC Web site. Then I saw a promo for the men’s final tonight, and I said “Wait a minute.” Yup. I still think the schedule is a bit confusingbut once I get home from a late night at work, I’ll be propping myself up to watch the men’s final, even though the American men’s medal hopes appear pretty slim.

A writer at SI.com believes the women can take the goldin gymnastics, and I sure hope he’s right that being shorthanded won’t hurt and may oddly help them. We’ll see Tuesday, I guess-another late night, but not quite as late as today, sigh.

-Speaking of late nights, I could go on endlessly, but I better at least attempt to get some sleep. Because of sleeping in on weekends, I always stay up late Sunday, and am either quite tired or practically falling asleep at my desk on Monday.

Related: Phelps owes golden debt to ultimate closer Warning: it’s a Jay Mariotti column. He’s not always the most coherent sports pundit. Of course, coherent sports pundit could be an oxymoron.

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