Saturday, February 20, 2010

Controlled Insanity

I have spent parts of the last two days watching ski jumping and skeletons, and I really have to ask which of these winter Olympic sport requires the greatest degree of controlled insanity? As I am watching ski jumpers travel 150 meters through the air, what kind of person chooses this for a career? You are never going to make a significant income at this sport. Though I suppose the alternative would be travelling down an ice track face first on a tiny sled at speeds in excess of 150 km/h. I am very proud of Jon Montgomery's performance last night. I watched with excitement as he collected another gold medal for Canada, but I have to say "dude what you do is absolutely crazy!"

Then there is the oft forgotten insanity of being a hockey goaltender. I know advances in equipment has evolved a long way from Johnny Bower blocking shots with his bare face; but it still requires some form of mental defect to want to be a goaltender. Here is a position where people fire a rock hard piece of rubber at you 100 miles an hour and you stand there hoping it hits you.

Then there is the freestyle aerial jumping where people propel themselves five stories into the air and do multiple twists, turns, and flips. I could have added Super G to the list, because when the wipe out it is quite spectacular to behold.


  1. Either skeleton 140 km on ice or "Buzz Lightyear" ski jumping are "certifiable" in my opinion.

    or a goalie facing our Womens Hockey Team!

    I miss Eddie the Eagle...

  2. ..or when I was in the process of obtaining my jump wings with the military, and the first statement uttered by our training NCO was, " So, many of you may be asking why man should want to jump out of a perfectly serviceable and airworthy aircraft..well,because you can!"

  3. Actually, the Nordic jumpers do quite well in their home countries. I believe it was a Finn (the top jumper that year) who was so condescending toward Eddie the Eagle in 1988. So the media checked out just how much the man was getting from the government, etc. It turned out to be quite substantial, and included a summer cottage in the country. Needless to say, we were all cheering for Eddie.

  4. And what about us, the audience. We are also "pleasantly" insane to watch these heart-stopping feats. How about when we want these athletes to go faster and faster .... faster than humanly possible. I know I have been saying "FASTER" to all the Canadian participants from the comfort of my couch.