Monday, July 30, 2012

This Olympian Pings from the Dorm Room to Pong at the Olympics

Another year of the Olympics has started and with that comes another harsh reminder that I still don't have the Olympic gold I've always sought.

I don't even have the Olympic bronze that I thought would be "okay..." to have.

For all intents and purposes, I am no better than your run of the mill Marion Jones, and I don't even have the doping allegations to show for it.

I tried getting POGs introduced as a competitive event back in 2006, but the International Olympic Committee turned me down because "... so, who are you?" And surviving the 2012 opening ceremony probably won't result in my gold medal, because it hasn't shown up yet.
So what am I left to do? Every sort of sport has already been incorporated into the Olympics, so I'll need to take up one of those.

In college I played a lot of Ping Pong. I realize this isn't that groundbreaking of a statement. I mean what do college kids have to do aside from playing Ping Pong (or "Table Tennis" as the communists call it). They really just have Ping Pong and drinking to do, so you know this is where some of the strongest competitors will exist (or drunkest).

Like many college-level players, I kept an Excel spreadsheet of my win/loss record. But not just win/loss, because that would leave many cells just empty and dull. My spreadsheet broke down the people I played, records against them, skunk records and overall records. I could have even kept track of points scored, but I'm not that much of a nerd.

I tried participating in a tournament at my student union, and I had a fair showing. It might sound racist to say this, but I was the highest finishing white guy in the tournament. However, getting my non-medal winning behind handed to me in that tournament is no way to show I had the tenacity to take gold. I realized I needed to take a different approach to obtain my Olympic/University glory. I created my own tournament in my dorm hall, Sellery Hall.

With 1100 residents in the place, obviously only the cream of the crop participated in this event. That means I competed with myself, two of my friends and one guy who responded to the shirtless picture of me holding a ping pong paddle that I plastered all over the dorm hall.

As I said, cream of the crop.

I ended up winning that tournament and laying claim to the Sellery Hall Ping Pong Association championship belt that I had created solely for the event. And for the purposes of that event, the championship belt was a toy WWE belt I bought off Ebay, covered with tin foil and drew Ping Pong-related messages with sharpie.

Bloody Ping Pong Champion
No time for losers, because I am the champion
Of the dorm room hall. And soon Olympics.
Winning the SHPPA world championship has really primed me to get that Olympic glory I know I'm destined to achieve. There might be others out there who are better than me. Others who legally serve and use a legal paddle. Others who don't giggle mercilessly when the score is six to nine. But those others don't have the heart and determination to wear a belt that is too small for most children to wear.

And that is why I'm certain I will finally obtain my Olympic gold in whatever spot the next Olympics is held. I do hope and pray that next spot is my dorm hall, because I just might have the inside track to win there.

So, so long London 2012, I realize it's not in the cards for me to take my glory there. Until then, I will wear my SHPPA belt with pride.

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