But Costas is so hot to stir things up that he can't help overstating the entire affair. Like the square football announcers who tsk-tsk endlessly about "showboating" in the end zone like it's the end of modern civilization as we know it, Costas has been trilling about "class" and "classiness" among athletes for decades now, as if it's the pinnacle of human achievement to reach a seemingly impossible goal, and then celebrate by acting like you're waiting for the F-train. What kind of bizarre WASPy mentality suggests that raw emotions should be saved for the most appropriate time and place, and then expressed in the most proper, so-called classy way?Heather Havrilesky continues to be the only readable columnist for Salon. Yay!
Bolt enjoys joking around with his competitors. One of his shoes was untied when he ran the 100-meter race. His technique is described as sloppy and amateurish. He polished off a bunch of Chicken McNuggets right before the race. He's that kind of a guy. He's 21 years old, for Chrissakes! He became the fastest man on earth by a long shot, breaking his own record, while every other contender huffed and puffed along several feet behind him. How would anyone dare to claim that he owed it to the fans to run even faster, or that he disrespected them by celebrating a little early? What in the world is Costas, space alien from Planet Honky, talking about? Why should Bolt care about class, of all provincial, bourgeois values? What the hell is class, anyway, but some arbitrary code that soulless, high-capitalist professional robots live by?
You know what I like to see in the world's greatest athletes? Exuberance, and joy, and tears. I'd like to see them rip their clothes off and run around the Bird's Nest naked. I'd like to see a guy who's fast enough to beat his competitors then walk slowly across the finish line while grabbing his package. There's your world record right there, motherfrackers. Take that, masters of the corporate-sponsored Olympic universe. I'm just too goddamn fast to heed your mortal concerns.
Anyway, back to school nd the Kafkaesque struggles. I'll be missing the Olympics!