Friday, January 10, 2014

Time Management and the Olympics

On Monday, I start an online class on Going the Distance: Goal Setting and Time Management for the Writer with Kitty Bucholtz. I'm hoping the class will give me some strategies to get myself organized and on some kind of schedule. Time management is something I've struggled with for years, and the situation isn't getting any better. In our electronic world, it's harder and harder to stay on task. Television and the Internet provide us with so many bright shiny things to watch and click on and investigate, from Facebook and YouTube to the high drama of reality TV. 

The next six weeks will be esp challenging for me because I'm a big figure skating fan, and the Winter Olympics start in February. There is rarely enough skating on TV for my taste, except in an Olympic year. My husband has already been warned that I will be glued to the TV throughout much of February.

The US National Championships are being held now and will be televised by NBC over the weekend. I'm so jazzed to see that the Ladies Event will be shown on Saturday night and there will be three hours of Pairs Skating and Ice Dancing on Saturday afternoon. (The Mens competition will be aired on Sunday.)


Pairs and Dance get short shrift when television time is scarce in favor of the higher profile Mens and Ladies events. I know some people think it cool to laugh at Ice Dancing, but it's one of my favorite events. Because jumps and lifts are limited, the ice dancers have to find other ways to be creative and put more emphasis on the artistry. The video above is Meryl Davis and Charley White performing their Indian-themed Original Dance from the 2010 Olympic season. I defy anyone to watch that and not be entertained. It's so much fun and so cleverly done. And skated to perfection.

Meryl and Charley are Team USA's best chance of winning a gold medal in figure skating. They won silver in Vancouver after Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada who took the gold.

So, why do I love figure skating? Well, there's the beauty of watching an athlete in a colorful costume whirl and jump to music. It appeals to the artist inside me at the same time I marvel at how someone can jump in the air and twirl around 3-4 times before landing on one foot on a narrow blade. I'm still amazed that anyone can do that at all, much less make it look so incredibly easy. I only tried ice skating once, and it was more than my uncoordinated body could handle. As Gracie Gold puts it in the commercial, "You're on ice alone with knives strapped to tennis shoes."

A lot of the winter sports leave me in awe. Luge, ski jumping, snowboarding. Don't you have to be just a little bit crazy to do that? Well, not if you're athletic, but it boggles my mind. What's your favorite Olympic Sport, the one that keeps you glued to the TV set when you know you should be doing something else.
Like writing.

Wish me luck with the class. Maybe I can learn to be more organized and self-disciplined, like the amazing Olympic athletes.



Rose Anderson said...

Nice post! I just love the figure skating. The winter skating events were always something my daughter and I watched together.

Kitty Bucholtz said...

Looking forward to plotting and planning with you next week, Linda!

My favorite Olympic figure skating memory is when friends were visiting and they really wanted to watch it, so John and I pretended to be interested even though we were bored. After we turned off the TV, one of our friends grinned and said, "So what'd you think?"

John immediately responded, "I could do that...if I wanted to." We all laughed. I don't know if we've seen any figure skating since then - but we jokingly repeat John's comment about lots of things now!

Linda McLaughlin said...

Rose, nice to meet another figure skating fan. I just realized this afternoon that one of my friends knows one of Ashley Wagner's coaches. Three degrees of separation!

Kitty, I am so looking forward to your class. I need help!


Ladyslipper said...

Linda - I'm so glad to be in this class with you. Hopefully we can make 2014 a great writing year. linda butler

Linda McLaughlin said...

Linda, thanks for dropping by. I'm hoping 2014 will be a good writing year for us, too.