Four years ago, at the start of the 2004 Olympic Games, I offered up a devilishly cunning plan in this very column to make the Olympics somewhat less stultifyingly boring. And guess what? It's 2008 and the Olympics are STILL stultifyingly boring! Here are just a few ideas I suggested at the time for sports that would be infinitely more interesting than basketball, weight lifting, and rhythmic gymnastics combined!
• Dodge Ball!—I don't get it. Why isn't this already an Olympic sport? If you don't agree, just imagine the USA firing a rubber ball right into the Soviet Union's scrabble sack! Boo-YAH!
• Drunken Baseball Bat!—I can't remember exactly what this game is called, but here's how it works. The competitors line up and shotgun a beer. Then they run 50 yards, put their foreheads on the end of a baseball bat, spin around five times, and try to run back without falling down and hitting their head on a rock. Try it, it's hee-larious!
• BB Gun Bull's-Eye!—I was really good at this game when I was a kid. The object is to hit your opponent directly in the cornea using a pump-action BB gun—WITHOUT PUTTING HIS EYEBALL OUT. (The trick is to only pump three times, and wait until he blinks.)
Then as now, nobody ever listens to me about anything, so screw it! However, in the meantime, there are certain sports that may be somewhat worth watching in 2008's Olympic Games (For the complete schedule, go to nbcolympics.com.) Here are MY picks....
8:00 pm OPENING CEREMONY (NBC, Fri Aug 8): Say what you want about the Chinese: Their record on human rights violations may be appalling, but DAMN! They know their fireworks! Don't miss this opening ceremony where they will probably blow up the moon.
11:00 pm BEACH VOLLEYBALL (NBC, Sat Aug 9): Dude, late-night Olympics are like watching "Skin-emax"! Not only is there coverage of beach volleyball, but also men and women's swimming, and men's gymnastics. (Or as I like to call it, "gym-nasty-ics"!)
2:00 am MODERN PENTATHLON (MSNBC, Fri Aug 22) The problem with the Modern Pentathlon is that no one knows what it is (probably not even the competitors). But I think it's AWESOME because it's basically the "secret agent" competition. Not only do you have to fence, swim, ride horses, run, and shoot a gun—you have to do it all on the same day! The only way this could be improved is if they were shooting at each other!
11:00 pm TABLE TENNIS (USA, Sun Aug 17) I love it that the Olympic committee devotes an entire sport to the same game I played in the fourth grade in Lloyd Felton's basement.
2:00 am THE FREAKY SPORTS (MSNBC, Sun Aug 10): If you're like me, you only enjoy the freaky/sissy sports that no one else appreciates. So set your TiVo to record MSNBC all night for freak-alicious games like women's field hockey, men's water polo (yum!), men's handball (?), and men shooting things with guns. OH! And badminton! We're going to shove our shuttlecocks down your throat, Croatia! (Hmmm... I didn't mean that the way it sounded.)This Week on Television...