Will Durst: The Barack Obama election year decathlon | KALW

Will Durst: The Barack Obama election year decathlon

Aug 13, 2012

Planetary props to the city of London for a monumentally memorable 30th Olympiad. Added kudos for keeping the athletic contests pretty much politics-free, except of course for the monumental ugliness that was the women's semifinal field hockey match between Great Britain and Argentina (a.k.a. The Falklands War II, this time it’s personal!)

One can never entirely keep politics out of games or games out of politics. The two have too much in common. For instance, we cheer for our team no matter what opponents they line up against. We keep score and hold grudges for generations. Contestants regularly try to psyche out the other side with smack talk about somebody's mother. And every once in a while a relief pitcher will buzz a high tight one around the chin of an opposing superstar and both benches will clear. Then not much of anything happens.

Even our notoriously equanimitous to the point of semi-somnambulant President occasionally is forced to engage in various sporty contortions. Here's a little something we like to call the Barack Obama Election Year Decathlon:

  1. The Individual Medley Multiple Issue-Straddle.
  2. The Debt Ceiling Crisis Crunch Clean And Jerk. (With an emphasis on the jerks.)
  3. Global Goodwill High Nuclear Hurdle Tour.
  4. Extreme Middle of the Road Straightline Walk-Run.
  5. Single Weekend 10 State Fundraising Marathon.
  6. Last Minute Digging Up a Democrat with a Backbone Desperation Relay.
  7. The Incredible Disappearing Successful Solar Energy Photo-Op Sprint.
  8. The 800 Pound Gorilla that is the Economy Greco-Roman Wrestle.
  9. Biting His Tongue While in the Presence of John Boehner Freestyle.
  10. The Joe Biden Advanced Obstacle Course. Now with Landmines!

The opinions of Will Durst do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Crosscurrents or KALW.