The Pyeongchang Winter 2018 Olympics are skating along brightly so far. It’s always a delight to watch countries from all over the world come together and compete in good fun and games, and especially in light of the circumstances the world is facing right now, it’s a welcome break. As of Monday, Feb. 26, Norway is in the lead with 39 medals total and 14 gold, followed by Germany with 31 total and 14 gold. The U.S. is fourth with 23 medals total and 9 gold.
The United States has some awesome athletes among the Olympians of 2018, including:
There’s Chloe Kim, the 17-year-old snowboarder for America who tweeted about ice cream before getting the highest score on the Olympic women’s halfpipe in history. Her public love of food got her on a Corn Flakes box that sold out in seven hours. Boy, I wish my love of food could get me so much attention. But I also don’t have the potential to become one of the best snowboarders in history, so I’ll enjoy my ice cream silently.
Red Gerard, another American snowboarder, binged Brooklyn Nine-Nine, slept late and almost missed his event, and upon seeing the results of his event said some pretty loud and pretty vulgar words. He ended up winning gold for the men’s slopestyle event, so it was well earned.
We have Adam Rippon, an openly gay figure skater who won a bronze medal with his amazing solo performance in figure skating. He openly attacked Mike Pence’s poor attitude towards the LGBTQ+ community and has said that he’s willing to speak to Pence himself to “speak up for those who don’t have a voice,” as he said on the Today show. He’s currently embracing his status as a breakout star along with the only other openly gay American Olympian Gus Kentworthy. If you Google Adam Rippon, the first article is how to get his abs. What an icon.
There’s also Elizabeth Swaney, an American who represented Hungary in the women’s ski half-pipe and got dead last place. She qualified only because she would participate in top-30 events that had less than 30 participants, so she could get that on her record. Is she cheating the system? Or was she just trying to live her dream of being an Olympian? Regardless, she has led a pretty interesting life, as someone who once ran for governor against Arnold Schwarzenegger. She really is someone who lives life to the fullest, and I, for one, applaud her mediocre performance. It’s still miles better than me.
This year’s winter Olympics has the highest number of athletes ever to compete in a Winter game, 2,925 athletes from 92 countries. The U.S. has two openly gay men on the team, and Maame Biney, the first African-American woman to make a U.S. speed-skating roster, performed in the short-track discipline for the speed-skating event.
There are always so many unique and fun people involved in the Olympics, and the 2018 games are no exception. I always love watching the Olympic games because they remind me of what human beings are capable of. Now, I know there’s a pretty solid chance I will never be able to perform a perfect half-pipe or a Salchow jump in figure skating or anything like that, but every person is capable of great things, whether it’s sports or something else. But watching the best performers the world has to offer shows me that human beings are pretty cool, and maybe you and I could do something cool too.