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Saturday Night's Alright For Commenting: August 6, 2016

It's a special Olympic edition of the ol' SNOT thread. Why? Because I said so! Now go to your room!

Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports

If it's the hottest part of the year, and you find yourself watching sports you wouldn't be caught dead viewing in any other year, it must be time for everybody's favorite quadrennial occurrence.  No, it's not a post by MDC, it's time for the 2016 Olympics where we get to see Rio De Janeiro, its white sand beaches, its semi-clear waters infested with man-eating sofas, and all the obscure sports we know and occasionally love.

As I sit here marinating in my own sweat, only partially surprised that the Opening Ceremony has actually ended, several Olympics-related thoughts swirl in my head.

First, someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but was last night's Opening Ceremony the longest ceremony in history?  Because it started here at 8 p.m. and didn't end until 12:30 a.m.  But I could be wrong and they just went into a half hour break after the cauldron was lit and it went on into the night (because Brazil, I guess?).

Generally I like the opening ceremony, especially the parade of nations, but four and a half hours to go from start to cauldron-lighting (which was really impressive) is unacceptable.  Maybe if NBC hadn't gone to commercial approximately 732 times and delayed the start of the show by a full half hour, we could get the ceremony (even on tape delay) to a brisk 120-150 minutes.

Second, it always amazes me, without fail, how transfixed I, and many others of you, I'm sure, get watching sports, as I said, we'd never watch in a million years if there weren't a gold medal on the line.  The script in my house usually goes one of two ways:

Me:  So what's on the ol' Olympic teletubes?

(flips on TV)

Me (eyes widening):  Oh, hot damn!  Norwegian women's handball?!  Against Brazil?  I am so there!

(10 seconds later)

Me:  What the hell are the rules for this game again?


Me:  So what's on the ol' Olympic teletubes?

(flips on TV)

Me (head tilting, like a slightly confused dog): Equestrian dressage?  Eh, I'll give it a shot.

(10 seconds later)

Me:  Why is dude wearing a top hat?  What kind of tactical advantage does that offer?  Do they lose points if it falls off?  Screw this, I'm going back to watch large people make hilarious facial expressions while lifting barbells that weigh approximately as much as my truck.

Third, and this is kind of a question for everybody, what sport do you get transfixed on?  I don't mean swimming, track and field, or gymnastics, since those are kind of the three big Olympic sports.

For me, I would say it's track cycling, except Mrs. UT's family used to be very heavily involved in the U.S. Olympic cycling team back in the 80s, so that interest mostly comes from her.  I mentioned water polo and handball are both fun, if somewhat incomprehensible, and badminton would probably make up my list.  Seriously, if I see Olympic badminton on and I flip to it, I'm watching it for at least 20 minutes; it's mesmerizing.

And lastly, thank Durga for the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Company).  By and large, NBC's coverage of the Olympics isn't bad, but sometimes it gets a little too American-centric for me which is a real problem when I want to watch the Norwegian women's handball team.  Luckily, here in Seattle, we get the CBC and sure, there's Canadian teams on but there's a pretty good balance between CBC's Canadian and non-Canadian coverage.

With that in mind, I hereby declare the mumble, mumble open thread officially open.  Let joy be unconfined.  Let there be dancing in the streets, drinking in the saloons, and necking in the parlor.

I'll be watching women's handball.