Southern Thing Column

These Olympians are nuts. Where are their mothers?

Following is an excerpt from this week’s column on The link at the bottom takes you to the full column.

The older I get, the harder it is to watch the Olympics. And I absolutely love the Olympics. The athletes’ feel-good stories give us hope for a humanity that the internet has totally ruined for us. I mean, wasn’t life better before we knew there are people who eat Tide pods or put bottle rockets between their butt cheeks and light them?

But the reason I have trouble watching the Olympics is three-fold: 1. I have a more highly developed Mom-sense as I age, 2. the athletes have lost their minds and 3. watching them makes my brain sweat.

What are they thinking, flying around four stories above ice-covered concrete? Or throwing one another in the air without a helmet or net, or sledding 85 mph down an ice-covered death chute? Stop that right now. Where are your mothers?

As someone who’s been known to fall on a flat surface, I know bad things can happen at any moment, no matter how talented you may be. (Although I admit the amazing athletic feats I’ve been watching have the upside of the guilt trip – whenever I watch, my mind’s like, “Fine. I’ll walk two laps around the block today.”)

After seeing the crash in the men’s snowboarding halfpipe, my stomach tightened. I checked the internet all that night and the next morning until I found out the kid, whom I could have birthed, was OK. Now I’m too nervous to look. I wait for Sweetums to tell me everyone survived, with all their extremities intact, then go back and watch the replay.

I’m pretty much left watching curling, which appears to be a fairly injury-free sport, unless someone gets a foot, or something worse, caught between two colliding rocks. That would sting. Click here to read the full column on

1 thought on “These Olympians are nuts. Where are their mothers?”

  1. Just about every sport, including those played in schools, has its risks. I have a book about sports injuries that lists the possible injuries of just about every sport. A number of them, where it lists the injuries, they have “every injury in this book” (There is a section on the specifics of all sorts of injuries) Yes, it is tough on a parent to think about how your child can get injured from participating in their favorite sport. My daughter (and I) were big into ice skating twenty years ago. We both fell a few times, luckily we weren’t seriously hurt. We made regular trips to the chiropractor. I fell on my tailbone once and couldn’t sit down for a month.
    But, we loved it, and I wouldn’t trade those experiences for anything in the world. A classmate of mine in graduate school said it best. She told me that her son was taking flying lessons. I asked her, “Aren’t you worried that something bad could happen?” She said, sure, I worry, but how can I keep him from doing what he loves to do?” That’s really what it’s all about, if your child has a passion for something, you’d hate to deprive them of it, even though it can get dangerous sometimes. We can’t give into fear, it just diminishes our lives.


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