The complete Olympic Games include the Paralympics

My editor wrote this over at GerardMcLean.com and I had to share. It is something that I privately champion at every opportunity, and this being one of those time, here you go.

UPDATE: @Neenz just published the Paralympics page at Alltop.com last night, Mar 5. If you know of or write a blog on the Paralympics, submit it here to be included.

I first got schooled in the Paralympic Games from Kim* during a telephone conversation my first week on the job back in 1996. For those who don’t know, I used to sell exercise bikes to paralyzed people. True.

“I am a tennis player,” she said.

“You mean you used to play tennis?” I asked.

“No, stupid. I play tennis. Wheelchair tennis. And I’m training for the 2000 Paralympics in Sydney.”

“The Special Olympics?” I said.

“No, I’m in a chair, not a f***ing r*tard!” she shot back angrily.

She was not one to mince words. She had also served four years in the US Navy and she swore like a sailor.

By the time I left the company several years later, we had gotten to be pretty good friends. I wish I had kept in touch, but that wasn’t what Kim was all about. She was one who lived in the moment, curious and anxious for the future with no regrets for the past. She never made it to Sydney, but it wasn’t for lack of trying.

That was my introduction to the Paralympic Games. They are held two weeks after the Olympic Games everyone knows about and gets broadcast on TV. Here is the Web site for the Games in Vancouver.

Eventually, I hope the Paralympic Games are played alongside the Olympic Games as paralympic athletes are every bit as tough as their able-boded counterparts. It seems to me that even when NBC doesn’t see the value in broadcasting the Paralympic Games, Social Media should be all over it. The Paralympics are like a really cool blog that you accidentally stumble into that you didn’t know existed, but changes your world view forever. If you want to see some real athletic ability, I encourage you to watch this year. And London. And Russia. And Rio.

Get involved on twitter. Encourage Guy and Neenz to establish a blog directory for the Paralympics on Alltop.com that doesn’t lead to disability. Write a blog article about how you feel about the Paralympics.

Do something inclusive. We’re all in this together.

*Withholding last name, but in case she ever reads this and I have permission to fill in the last name, I’d be happy to.
**Please don’t contact me about ELA being out of business. That happened way after I left.

My extra second in 2008

Just one more second
Just one more second
I heard on NPR today that 2009 will have to wait an extra second to coordinate clocks with the Earth’s rotation.

Rarely do we get handed the gift of time, so I got to thinking about what I would do with an extra second of time. A second isn’t really enough time to do anything significant, but it sometimes makes the difference for some people whether or not they step in front of a bus or not at a particular moment. A second is also a lifetime in most Olympic sports, sometimes determining the difference between first place, a gold medal and fourth place and nothing.

But, my mind raced to more practical calculations and I pondered this:

If I can type 60 words a minute, that means I can type out an extra word in one second. And, if there are 6 billion people on the planet at any given point, and if only 30% were literate enough to be able to type one word, that is 1,800,000,000 extra words.

Now, the result may be closer to a million monkeys on a million typewriters, but you never know. Would 1.8 billion words impart some human knowledge or wisdom we would never have know if we didn’t have that extra second?

But then again, it is just an extra second. What could you possibly do in one second?

My fifteen minutes of fame

My fifteen minutes of fame
Thursday, February 1st, 2007 07:01:27 AM

Well, it finally happened! I’m famous, at least for the next fifteen minutes. So, I thought I would take this space to shout out to the various places and folks that got a mention in my article! (Dayton Daily News, Neighbors Northwest, page 1.) Tim Hortons, Rivershark, Inc., TourneyCental, and our very, very Special Olympics Polar Plunge that you should pledge, even if it is only a buck. Please folks, this is a really, really important and fun event. So pledge!! And if you want to come out and plunge, give Rufus a call at 937-836-6255.

And of course, a link back to the DDN at www.daytondailynews.com (or at our soccer page here.)

Well, that is about all of my fifteen minutes, so go back to your lives, read some more articles and get yourself addicted to blogs. They’re fun to read; fun to write.. (except for that space bar.. I don’t have thumbs and it is hard to hit…)