I’VE had a touch of the trots lately.
Might have been something I ate. Most likely a by-product of the past-used-by-date vitamins I quaffed with my orange juice a few mornings back, ironically to settle an upset stomach.
It’s terrible. I must have looked like I was stocking up for future lockdowns with my 36-roll packet of toilet paper.
A belated thank you to the bloke in front who recognised the grimace above the top tier of three-ply. He’d been there. He knew this was an emergency, and I had to move quickly.
Thank you sir, for allowing me to pass by. Not wind. That may have been uncomfortable for all of us.
It was the type of calling where you wish you had a spare outlet from which to eject unwanted bacteria while the one you’ve abused for three days leans into recovery.
Then you go to the doctor who asks what the symptoms are. “I’ve just told you I’ve been raising the water bill by racing to the reading room every, say 25 minutes. And you’re asking me what the symptoms are? Not sure how much clearer you want mate – I’ve got the runs.”
Never mind, I’m feeling better now.
What I did discover is that being home bound with 25-minute intervals is perfect for Olympic viewing.
But I’ve been thinking about the commentary.
Our world-record-breaking swim at the weekend had poor Thorpey looking for superlatives.
“It’s a world record,” he croaked. “That’s well, er, um, incredible.” Or some other uninspiring variation of ho-hum, expecting the swim itself to propel his viewing audience into hysteria.
I’d like to invite him and any other former athlete who takes to the commentary box to listen back to the vision of themselves breaking a world record.
“Ian Thorpe the master. Ian Thorpe the King,” blurted the master of commentary himself Ray Warren. We as a nation stood 20-feet tall as we dropped tears in our Dutch courage, proudly watching a young man knock of Pieter van den Hoogenband in a world-best time.
Similarly, I’d just watched a moment in history, our four women locking horns with the Chinese, the Americans and a line on the television which tells us that they’re doing it faster than anybody before them.
“Gold, gold, gold for Australia!”
Nope, none of that. Instead, Thorpey told everyone how proud he was of the fifth fastest split in history, and other technical quagmire I couldn’t give a fat chance about.
I wanted the hairs between the skin cancers on my arm to stand on end. I wanted to race for my green and gold beanie in the bottom drawer of the cupboard, and to wave my scarf at the neighbours whose Aussie flag shorts sit disturbingly just below a rather large beer gut.
I wanted to shed tears onto my American-owned Vegemite on toast. And I wanted the commentary to help me do that, to be proud of who I am and the land to which I belong.
Just like when you, Thorpey, broke your world record. Or how Bruce helped me bound to the shop for a burger with the works after Cathy won her 400m race in Sydney.
Help me remember the race as a remnant of good old days gone by. The girls deserve better. I deserve better.