The Olympics Will Stop Being Boring If Everyone Does This
The Olympics features the world’s best athletes competing against each other with billions of people watching. Why is it so terrible? Most boil the Olympics’ problems down to commercialization ruining the game’s original idealism. There’s something to this, but until 1972, the International Olympic Committee pretty much resisted money from corporate sponsors, and before that the games weren’t all that good then either.
Too many critiques that come from the left are like that anyway. Progressives, at least the food co-op and urban garden-variety, always ask what messages and signifiers the games are communicating, rather than the crass aesthetic question, “Are they fun to watch?”
That’s stupid, since the focus on how the Olympics reinforce consumer culture or bring out the worst in human nature misses what’s good about sports—the spectacle. The problem with the games isn’t that they’re too big; it’s that they’re too small. And in the process of making them more entertaining to watch, we’ll make them more egalitarian.
For starters, a point from Mark Perryman: We should be using the biggest possible venues to maximize the number of spectators and to lower ticket prices. Wembley has a capacity of 92,000, Twickenham and the Emirates are huge stadiums, too. Why the fuck did London need an Olympic Stadium? Why not just go down the road?