Monday, July 07, 2008

board balancer

I just twittered this, but I feel it needs more than 140 characters to explain.
I apologize because this is just a bitter rant.
Yesterday, I was enjoying a Lazy Sunday afternoon and flipping through the TV channels to see what was on (pretty much nothing). I happened upon some coverage (I think it was for the Olympics?) of a young woman on a balance beam. She was awesome! She had one little stumble where she lost her balance, but was able to recover quickly. I admit, there is NO WAY that I could do anything close to what she did. But then it hit me... The idiocy of this event! Here's a girl who spends hours and hours of her life so that she can compete with lots of other girls who have also spent hours and hours to balance on a 4" wide piece of wood. What on earth for? In stepping back a little you can pretty much say that about any sport. There is very little "benefit" in the grand scheme of things in putting a ball in a hoop, hitting a ball with a stick, kicking a ball, driving a car really fast, swinging from a bar, or balancing on a beam. But some of those skills you can make really really ungodly amounts of money doing! But something tells me that this young woman on a beam doesn't get paid that much money to do so.
She might get a medal, or bragging rights, etc... but when all is said and done, all she can claim is that she can balance on a stick much better than most people.
Oh well. Just a rant I had to get off my chest.
The human race just really puzzles me at times.

Edit: 7/8/08:
As JDE pointed out in her twitter response, "But you can ask that of any sport. Or art, really. Isn't it a celebration of what the human body is capable of doing?"
Yes... I too thought of the connection here to art in general. But imho I don't think the two compare overall. Granted, some "art" does absolutely fall into the category of "what's the point!" No argument there at all :)
There are also many different reasons for why a person attempts to create art, and like sports, some do it for the medal, or for the money... But I see one important difference between sports and art... Art (in general) is about creating something tangible. (I'm not talking about dance, or performance art). But things like drawing, painting, photography, even music. In the end... art is something that produces something tangible - and hopefully - makes the world a better, more beautiful place. We could go into a great debate (as many have) as to opinions on what art is, and or what is "beautiful" but that's not really the point of this rant.

Point taken though :)
Perhaps... The line between art and sports is not as clear or defined as I had thought. Like dance, or performance art, sports do create memories, and there's something to be said for that.

Thanks for the response and getting me to think a little deeper. :)

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