Friday, August 22, 2008

I'm WAAAAAALKIN' in the rain...RACE WAAAALKIN' in the rain!

I've made no secret about my lack of interest in the Summer Olympics. I'd almost go so far as to call it disdain, except that I do feel a bit of a tingle (very faint tingle) anytime an American athlete whoops some ass and takes down a gold medal. So no, it's not disdain, but with apologies to the swimmers among the staff and readership here at JSS, I am not going to pretend that I spend the other 3 years between the Games becoming familiar with the athletes or following the sports. (And yes, I am well aware of the Paraguayan javelin/model chick, and the Feres sisters of Brazil, etc. -- they are unquestionably worthy of masturb, er, adoration and I would totally crush them if given the chance, but that is beside the point)
I have no interest, not even a little bit.


UNTIL NOW


Holy fucking shit people. I watched Women's 20km Race Walking last night, and no it's not the Olympic version of the Million Man March. I always thought Race Walking, or speedwalking as I once called it, was the last bastion of bored, overweight suburban housewives and obese 45 year-old comic book collectors who can't do anything else for exercise lest they snap their brittle legs.

For those of you who are not familiar, it basically consists of walking as fast as you can. Sounds simple, right? Fools. According the the USATF (USA Track & Field), there are only two strict but fair rules:

1) Race walking is a progression of steps so taken that the walker makes contact with the ground so that no visible (to the human eye) loss of contact occurs.

2) The advancing leg must be straightened (i.e., not bent at the knee) from the moment of first contact with the ground until in the vertical upright position.


In case Rule 1 is confusing, which I think it is meant to be, that means that your "advancing" foot cannot "visibly" lose contact with the ground. Of course unless the sole of your shoe is coated in KY Jelly or you are wearing rollerblades, it's virtually impossible to move forward without lifting your foot. Who judges the visibility or, I guess, invisibility of such contact loss? They have judges posted along the 20 km route whose job it is to watch the "pack" (yes, they walk in packs, I didn't think drafting worked at less than 15 miles per hour) for said contact violations. If they detect a violation they slap you in the ass with a yellow paddle. Well maybe they don't slap you in the ass but they definitely slap you.

As for Rule 2, the result of the straightened leg move is that the dozens of women in this race were walking around like they were suffering from severe amoebic dyssentary while acting as coke mules for a Medellin cartel and didn't want to lose their payload before the destination, lest they spend the next 5-10 years in a prison camp in the Gobi Desert getting their asses paddled.

To top it off, it was absolutely pouring from the heavens (or Shangri-La since it's China), and who doesn't love scrawny women with diarrhea soaked to the skin with no end in sight. One of the many amusing sights was watching these women break away from the "pack" so that they could take in some fluids and throw water on themselves to cool off. Just didn't seem neccesary.

As projected by all the experts, the winner was Olga Kaniskina from Russia who walked away with this one. She was way ahead of the "pack" for the entire "race" and won by a huge margin.


It is with great sadness that I offer my resignation from JSS so that I can work toward my new goal: to become an official ass paddler for the USATF. It has been my lifelong dream for over 10 hours now. I thank you in advance for your support, and look forward to seeing you on the ol' dusty Race Walkin' trail.

1 comment:

cilantro said...

tex, good luck traing for the ass smacking... you had a great run here on JSS. from suds glasses at night to this eliquent piece of blogging...