Last night, as the fortnight-plus broadcast of the Beijing Olympics drew to a close, Bob Costas and Chris Collinsworth began to pontificate on the wonderfully small and unified world they had seen on display during the Games. They both wondered aloud about how great it would be if this microcosm could be extended and expanded over from one week in one city to a month or a year, all across the globe. It is an amazing thing to ponder: that spirit of competition coupled with cooperation and sportsmanship spread like a veil over the world.
It would be petty to mention that while those same Games played out in China, Russia was invading Georgia. People and things continued to blow up in Iraq. Sudanese security forces continue to slaughter refugees in Darfur. The Olympic Motto, "Faster, Higher, Stronger," haven't exactly been on display outside Beijing. But we can dream, can't we?
Out in the Mile High City, the next big gala is about to begin. This is the one where all the Democrats get together to create their plan for world domination. In a vaguely touchy-feely-big-tent-kind-of -way. "Democrats will leave this Denver convention unified, organized and stronger than ever to take America in a new direction with Barack Obama and Joe Biden as president and vice president," said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in a speech to California delegates. She said that all twelve national conventions she has attended have been marked by contentiousness. I guess if you go to a family reunion, you sort of expect your Uncle Ted to get a little surly after the first few beers, but wouldn't it be great if all the choices were as clear as Usain Bolt's world record victories?
Well, I guess we don't get to live in that carefully choreographed world for very long, so we should savor those moments when our best is truly on display, and forgive those moments of weakness when they occur. And keep Uncle Ted away from the cooler.