I’ve never ski jumped or played hockey or snowboarded or figure skated or done that one where you ski and then stop and shoot so even if I had been able to get away from work I probably wouldn’t have added much to those events for the US Olympic team.
But curling? Sliding a stone shaped like a tea kettle across the ice? See, what you do is there’s this forty pound stone with a handle and you slide it across the ice toward a bullseye target and you try to knock your opponent out of the target area and when the stone is sliding along you sweep in front of it and your teammates scream. I’ve lifted things with handles, slid on ice and used a broom. I can do this.
So, I’m watching it on TV and thinking that it could have been me. It could have been my kids watching the Olympics, “USA, USA, USA, hey look, Dad’s won a silver” and they would have been so proud as I’d stand there on the podium during the medal ceremony while my fellow Olympians who performed triple axels or skied down almost vertical mountain slopes or rode a luge at 325 mph looked on and cheered for me, the guy who never got cold or tired or fractured.
And then when the games were over I’d come home and after a round of interviews and TV appearances I’d make some commercials for Chapstick or Coke or some manly products and the children would cheer and the ladies would swoon and I’d bask in the glory of the Olympics—Daa- daa, da-da-da-daa. But nobody ever called about joining the team so you won’t see me in Sochi. That’s why I decided that I had to do something now about 2018 and that’s what I did Monday morning.
“Mr. Martin, do you have a minute?” and he smiled and waved me into his office and said “Sure, what can I do for you?”
I asked him if he’d been watching the Olympics and he said yes and I said something about how great they are and then I asked him if the company would sponsor me and release me from my work duties so that I could train to make the 2018 team.
He asked me if I was insane and I laughed and said, “Oh, it’s not dangerous. It’s the curling team. See, what you do is there’s this…” and that’s when he told me I could have all the time I needed starting now.
You’ve got to set yourself a goal, which I’ve done, and now that my boss has given me time off to train for the 2018 winter games in Pyeongchang, South Korea I’m almost there: ”Ann-yeong—Hello, South Korea .” I should probably look up the members of the 2014 team and let them know I’ll be joining them.
Set yourself a goal, follow through and go for the gold.
“USA, USA, USA.”