Update: 2/12/10

THE WINTER OLYMPICS

Spectacular opening ceremony, highlighted by the parade of competing nations.  The enthusiasm of the men and women wearing USA was boundless.

The USA poster girl, Lindsay Vonn, and three other USA athletes, snowboarders Hannah Teeter and Clair Bidez, as well as skier Lacy Schnoor, appear in the new Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition.  Suffice to say there is more to these young women than one would see on snow or ice.  Of course, we read it just to assure that American athletes were healthy and well-fed.

There is no Olympic softball venue until at least 2020 but there is a possibility that one or more US softball players will be in future winter Olympics.  SPY posted snowboarder Elana Meyer’s request for a brakeman for the 2014 games; already, three softball players who read SPY have written to Elana.

A Death in Whistler

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — A men’s Olympic luger from the country of Georgia died Friday after a high-speed crash on a track that is the world’s fastest and has raised safety concerns among competitors. A tearful IOC president Jacques Rogge said the death hours before the opening ceremony “clearly casts a shadow over these games.”

Nodar Kumaritashvili lost control of his sled during training, went over the track wall and struck an unpadded steel pole near the finish line at Whistler Sliding Center. Paramedics and doctors were unable to revive the 21-year-old luger, who died at a hospital, the International Olympic Committee said.

“We are heartbroken beyond words,” said John Furlong, chief executive of the Vancouver organizing committee.

Before speaking at a news conference, Rogge took off his glasses, rubbed his eyes and said, “Sorry, it’s a bit difficult to remain composed. This is a very sad day, and the IOC is in deep mourning.”

ADD TO YOUR CALENDARS

June 25-27 – 18 under Hawk Rocker College Exposure Event and 16 under ASA National Region 10 Regional Elgin, Ill

October 8-10 – 16 and 18 under Homer Hawks College Exposure Event and player camp

THE NATASHA RICHARDSON EFFECT

Keeping my previously scheduled morning appointment with orthopedic doctors to examine my left knee (torn meniscus), I mentioned that I had fallen on the ice yesterday and hit my head on the asphalt surface of the road – incurring one hell of a headache and a bruised backside.  Unlike the old days when I got one-stop medical shopping at Johns Hopkins, I now consult local doctors, which meant the knee doctor at one conglomerate medical clinic, a spinal specialist and MRI at another medical corporation, and, finally, an extensive examination at a third facility to determine if I had a concussion and possible subdural hematoma.  After two journeys through an MRI tube, the consensus is that I had  a severe whiplash – aggravating the effects of the concussion suffered at Boulder three years ago.  I know the precautions are necessary and for my own good, and I am grateful for a comprehensive medical insurance policy, which made me think again of all the people who do not have adequate insurance coverage.

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