What do the Olympics and gun control have in common? Twitter, they have Twitter in common. This exchange of tweets on Twitter was too funny (and tragically accurate) not to share! It came after the USA women’s hockey team beat Canada in the gold medal hockey game and the USA men’s curling team beat the Canadian men’s curling team to advance to the gold medal game in the winter Olympics. It also came after another shooting rampage in a USA school.
Hey @Canada, what else would you like us to beat you in today?
8:43 AM – 22 Feb 2018
This reply was the BEST! Nothing more to be said that can improve that conversation. Leave it to a little blue bird to get the last word in!
In my youth, the only curlers I knew were the rags my mother used to put in my hair. I was vaguely aware that my BFF’s brother was a curler, but I cannot say I was interested enough to find out anything about the sport. In fact, I’m not sure it was much of a sport back then.
My husband was a great curler in his youth, representing his club in the provincial playdowns several times. His teenaged years were consumed with curling. His knowledge of and passion for the game, not to mention the numerous trophies that we have in our home, (those were the days when no one but the winner got a trophy) taught me all about the game. Not just the logistics of the game, but how difficult it is (here in Canada) to be the best team in your club let alone your zone, province, or country. That degree of difficulty has not changed. It might be even tougher as there are so many good teams out there.
My two eldest sons started curling at the age of four. They both curled locally for years, coached by their father. The younger of the two was not as passionate about the sport as the elder who also went on to curl competitively including representing our area in the provincials. Unfortunately, much to the chagrin of his dad, his curling days took a back seat to his goal of becoming a civil engineer. Both sons learned a lot on the curling ice, including leadership, team play, and communication skills. Both developed friendships that have lasted over the years. In fact, my eldest son met his new wife within the first few years of his curling career. They both still curl at the same RCC although she is currently taking a hiatus to give birth to their first child!
Gone are the days, however, where drinking beer (adults only of course) and munching on junk food after the game were the highlights of the sport, at least at the competitive level. Today, teams and individuals are known for their fitness level, mental endurance, and strategically amazing shots. Sorry Ed Werenich, but the days of the belly hanging over the belt as you crouch on the ice to throw your shot are long gone.
Watching the mixed doubles category in the winter Olympics this week, it is obvious that these curlers definitely have to be physically fit athletes to compete at this level today. With just two (traditional curling has four) curlers per team, they are throwing a rock, then quickly jumping up to sweep it down the ice towards the house. I broke out in a (nervous) sweat watching them, especially the gold medal game between Canada and Switzerland. The pairing of Canada’s John Morris and Kaitlyn Lawes were spectacular to watch as they brought home the gold.
In case you haven’t noticed Canada is sporting a shiny Penny at the Olympics in Rio. Although we gave up using pennies in our currency recently, this Penny is a keeper. At just 16 years of age, Penny (short for Penelope) Oleksiak has made a tremendous splash at the Olympics and all Canadians very proud this week.
Penny is the first Canadian athlete to win four medals in a single summer Olympics. With four swimming medals (1 gold, 1 silver and 2 bronze) under her belt (or around her neck) she goes for a fifth medal in another relay Saturday night.
Her sunny disposition, ever present smile and unassuming attitude make her a fan favourite. After her gold medal win, she did not turn around to see her result for a full 25 seconds, then mumbled “oh my gosh!” when she realized she had tied for first place and the gold medal. No fist pumps or fingers in the air, just an endearing “oh my gosh.” What an inspiration to all youngsters let alone other athletes.
I’m willing to bet Penelope will be a favourite in baby girl names this year here in Canada!
I am very proud of our Canadian women today! The Canadian women’s hockey team overcame a 2-0 goal deficit in the third period to force overtime against the USA team and then scored again to win the Olympic GOLD medal. Marie-Philip Poulin scored both the tying goal and the game winning overtime goal for team Canada.
Earlier today, Jennifer Jones’ curling team beat Sweden in the championship final to win gold as well. This game was a nail biter too, with Sweden having a chance to tie the score or go ahead in the ninth end. Instead, Jones and the Canadian women’s team stole two points to head into the tenth end with a three point lead that Sweden could not rally from. As she threw her first rock in the tenth end, a smile lit Jennifer Jones’ face as she (and we) knew she was about to make the easy take out shot to run the Swedes out of rocks and win the gold medal.