The New Delhi Backstroke

We were watching the Olympic games during Sunday breakfast and the U.S. women’s’ basketball team was playing the Chinese.

“You know, all those whistles just drive me crazy,” Mom broke in.

“I think those are the referees,” Bill said, rolling his eyes.  “They kind of have to blow whistles.”

“I know, I know,” she said.  “It still drives me crazy.  Sometimes I think they do it just to do it.  It doesn’t count for anything.”

I looked at Bill and shrugged, then asked the room in general whether or not we’d scored more gold than China.

“We have more medals than anyone else,” Mom offered.

“I know,” I replied.  “I just wondered if we’d won more gold metals than China.  Last I heard, they were ahead.”

“Well I think it’s wonderful that some of these little countries have people in the Olympics when they don’t have much else.”

“Who?  Like China?” asked Bill as he got up and starting clearing breakfast plates.

“Yes and like some of those African countries,” she replied, taking the last bite of her ham and cheddar scrambled eggs.

“Do you know,” I added as a little piece of Olympic trivia, “that Michael Phelps… you know who that is, right Mom?”

“The swimmer that’s won all the prizes,” she answered.

“Right, the one who’s won more gold than anyone, ever.  Well, did you know that he’s won more medals than the country of India has during the hundred-plus year history of the Olympics?”

“Well that’s understandable,” she said, popping the last of her English bread toast into her mouth.  “They probably don’t have very many swimming pools in India.”


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