The United States Olympic Committee officially unveiled its 530-athlete roster for the London this week. Wyoming, a mythical paradise where golden gods with rippling muscles run barefoot through grassy fields and gyms all day, is sending more athletes per capita to the Games than any other state, according to Time Magazine.
Here's a one-minute video that features a girl somehow stay standing while atop a moving balance board. Oh, also: she handles several basketballs—and in several different ways!—with complete ease while doing so. How very impressive! The video, inside.
Behold the Kings Firecrackers, a jump-roping squad of teen (and pre-teen) girls from Ohio—who may get a movie deal! Here, the girls perform an astonishing eight-minute routine during a halftime show at the US Naval Academy. Watch inside.
Here was the Spanish Olympic basketball team, minding its own business by posing for a full-page newspaper ad in the "Slanty-eyed Chinaman" pose, which, as all Spanish basketball players know, is funny and endearing. Then the scurrilous English-speaking media goes and writes a news story about it, twisting it into some sort of "racist" gesture. Despite the fact that Spanish athletes have many Chinamen friends! Spanish nationalist outrage has risen up at the foreign misinterpretations of this widely practiced gesture of eye-based friendship among Spanish athletic teams. So it's only fitting that the (English) reporter who broke the story has now had to write a groveling piece defending his decision to cover this Spanish leisure activity:
The Olympics: nothing else is important! We expect the media to cover the games with the proper amount of cynical patriotic fervor, and we expect the populace to sit on their plush couches and absorb the proceedings like good-and occasionally xenophobic-citizens. But amidst all the beauty, brawn, and nakedness that the Olympics offer us, we all have one question looming in the back of our minds: "Could I do that?" Two weekend warriors set out on a quest to compare themselves, athletically, with Olympians, and discovered the answer: no. It's quite satisfying to watch:
Condom advertising is a fine art form. A prophylactic maker has to decide whether to go demure-letting the product sell itself-or think up some fancy gimmick to make people choose their rolled-up piece of plastic over other, incredibly similar, competitors. They're all gonna end up in the same place haha, yaknowhatimsayin? (Actually they won't, except in Iran). A Chinese condom company called Elasun has caught the Olympic spirit with an ad campaign that makes condoms into cute little references to Olympic sports. Because "Sports make you health"! Pictured, Bicycle-fucking. Click through for three more sport-fucking spots.
You can't trust the Red Chinese for a single second. (Kidding! Trust them all you want). Nor can you trust multinational corporations! When they combine, they tend to be exceptionally devious. For example: Major companies are running ads featuring Chinese athletes having tender moments with their own parents, in preparation for the Olympics. But while the athletes are real, their parents-the catalysts for the ad's emotional strength-are played by actors. You have to see it to believe it! In one ad, a Chinese hurdler poses on a billboard (pictured) with two actors who are kind of like his parents, but probably more attractive. A Coke ad shows athletes and their parents bonding by doing sports together, something that their real parents would never do, I guess. "From an acting standpoint, we prefer to use trained actors who can match our creative requirements for the TV commercial," says a Coke spokesman, while urinating on the concepts of truth and familial honor. Watch the Coke ad below, and trust no one: Click to view [via WSJ]
With all the billions of dollars that pour into the Olympics, you'd think that the least the host committee could do would be to come up with a decent mascot. But no! In a classic case of overthinking something into oblivion, cities obsess over the stupid mascots for years, until they create some sort of awful mutant-by-committee. This year is no different: the WSJ reports that the Beijing mascot (five assorted weird animal-like creatures, pictured) is disliked even by the artist who created them. Throughout the 70s and 80s, mascots were fairly normal: a tiger, an eagle, a bear, a beaver, a gay dachsund. But in 1992 abstraction took over, and the whole enterprise went off the rails. After the jump, pictures of the Olympic mascots from '92 onwards. They suck: