Athletes Ready and Eager for 2012

[insert Olympic theme music here]

When The London Times Matthew Syed—a 1992 Barcelonan and 2008 Beijing commentator—was asked how true it is that for athletes, behind the scenes, the Olympics is rampaging humpfest, he gave the answer Bob Costas never could to the question Costas would never address:

You had better believe it.

From Syed’s perspective, the Olympics is a summer wonderland for physically fit, young, attractive, competitive hardbodies. Describing the sexual landscape of Barcelona, Syed recalls that

Surf’s up.there were the female athletes – literally thousands of them – strutting, shimmying, sashaying and jogging around the village, clad in Lycra and exposing yard upon yard of shiny, toned, rippling and unimaginably exotic flesh. Women from all the countries of the world: muscular, virile, athletic and oozing estrogen. I spent so much time in a state of lust that I could have passed out.

But it wasn’t just guys checking out the opposite sex, either.

The women, too, seemed in thrall to their hormones, throwing around daring glances and dynamite smiles like confetti. No meal or coffee break was complete without a breathless conversation with a lithe long jumper from Cuba or an Amazonian badminton player from Sweden, the mutual longing so evident it was almost comical. It was an effort of will to keep everything in check until competition had finished. But, once we were eliminated from our respective competitions, we lunged at each other like suicidal fencers.

If you think these are just the wistful memories of an old man longing for his youth, keep in mind that, as Reuters widely reported, one AIDS organization distributed over 100,000 condoms to the Beijing Village’s 16,500 residents. (That’s only averages six condoms per person, but you get the idea.) Ole Hansen, spokesman for UNAIDS China, explained their gift this way:

“There are many young, strong, single people in the athletes’ village and, like everywhere, some will fall in love or other things, so we need to make condoms available … A lot of these young people are not married or in relationships so we want to make sure they have the information and tools to protect themselves if they have sexual encounters.”

In a recent column, The Guardian‘s Marina Hyde quoted American gold medal swimmer B.J. Bedford, who’d once described the Olympic Village, where most athletes reside during the Games, as “10,000 people walking around hyped up on their own glycogen,” adding that “you can almost see the sparks flying off their skin.”

Syed caught up with an Australian table tennis player in Beijing,

Olympic legendand he launched into the breathless patter common to any Olympic debutante: “It is unbelievable in there; everyone is totally crazy once they are out of their competitions. God knows what it is going to be like this weekend. It is like a world within a world.” A British runner (anonymous again: athletes are not supposed to talk to journalists unaccompanied by a PR type, least of all about sex) said: “The swimmers finished earlier in the week and it was like there was an eruption.”

Ah yes, the swimmers. For some reason the International Olympic Committee insists on bunching the swimming events towards the beginning of the Games with the inevitable consequence that the aquatics folk get going earlier – sexually I mean – than everyone else.

In other words, Costas was right about one point: Everybody wants to be Michael Phelps. London, lock your doors.


1 comment so far ↓

#1 Johnnie on 08.25.08 at 9:09 pm

Horny and fueled up on junk food, apparently, as seen in this McDonalds commercial. Who else but a highly trained athlete can afford to eat this crap? 49% daily value of sodium and 41% daily value of sat fat!

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