Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Football, The Olympics, and Political Games

Mid-winter and life can be dull. Luckily this year events locally and far afield prevent the onset of dark-day depression.

I mentioned previously I am not a football fan, but living in the Philadelphia sphere of influence, home of the greatest upset in Super Bowl history, ignites the spirit and makes the hoopla impossible to ignore. The playoff games, the pre-Bowl hoopla, the big game frenzy and after-game goings-on fuel the euphoria.

Next up: The Winter Olympics. Not quite as exciting as the Eagles Super Bowl game and victory, but the spectacle begins (on NBC networks in the U.S.) with the opening ceremony on Thursday, February 8th, 8:00 p.m. EST and continues until the closing ceremony Sunday, February 25th. The Olympics offer interesting - and some not so interesting - viewing. I don’t care. It is winter, it is cold, it is dark too many hours (although additional minutes of light slink in every day), and I am eating too much comfort food.


The munching will not change as I station myself on the couch, wrapped in a warm blanket or even better my hoodie footie, stationary and almost comatose as I nibble the afternoon and evening away watching young, strong, beautiful men and women from around the world do amazing things.

These two athletic events prompted an idea unique, untried and untested, thought-provoking and attention-grabbing, yet unfortunately will never be adopted. Anywhere. It should, however, find a home in the United States.

Everyone agrees the election buildup is too long, too divisive, too expensive, and just plain annoying. We heave a gigantic sigh of relief when the polls close, whoever wins.

My idea enlivens the process, increases electorate participation, and reduces the long, drawn out process.

Let’s introduce a series of athletic events in place of the current electoral process. Bowing to the age and physical condition of those involved, events too dangerous or physically taxing will be eliminated. Activities will be age-appropriate. Instead of boring speeches, candidates face opponents in a series of tests of skill and endurance. The candidate with the overall top score gets the job.

Here is a sampling of contest ideas:


  • Read as many words as possible of the Declaration of Independence without taking a breath.
  • Participate in a Trivia contest with categories such as: Weird and Funny District (or state or national) street names, local fave foods, high school mascots, location of the largest potholes, worst traffic jams, etc.
  • Yell loud and long the words: Yea and Nay.
  • Maneuver an obstacle course from a Congressional office to the doors of the Congressional chamber.

  • Which candidate devours the most rubber chicken in a specific amount of time? or
  • Pats the head of the most babies in a set time period? or
  • Maintains a smile for the longest time? or
  • Lifts the most (printed) legislative documents?

  • Contenders must repeat a tongue twister five times – examples below, but longer ones can be used – the candidate with the loudest voice, greatest emotion and fewest errors wins this challenge.

I wish to wish the wish you wish to wish, but if you wish the wish the witch wishes,
 I won't wish the wish you wish to wish.

Whether the weather be fine
or whether the weather be not.
Whether the weather be cold
or whether the weather be hot.
We'll weather the weather
whether we like it or not.

I thought a thought.
But the thought I thought
Wasn't the thought I thought I thought.
If the thought I thought I thought,
Had been the thought I thought,
I wouldn't have thought I thought.

How about some children’s party games - a balloon blowing contest (the politician producing the most hot air wins)? Pin the tail on the donkey (or elephant)? A piƱata contest where, when broken, votes pour out and contenders get the number of votes collected? Or tug of war? Musical chairs? A treasure hunt?

The possibilities are endless. I am sure constituents can create lots more intriguing, innovative ordeals.

Meanwhile my couch (and hoodie footie) beckons… 

1 comment:

  1. I think this is a great idea. I would also like a test of their ability to do simple math. Maybe interview their family members last thing at night. Can they go for a whole day without talking?

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