Going for Ratings Gold

If you saw me stumble sleepily to my desk this morning, you might have wondered, "Somebody hit the happy hour hard...".

Nope, more like Olympic overload. Every night this week I've been up to the wee hours getting my fix of Michael Phelps, international scandal (how old are those girls?), and that wicked balance beam. At midnight on Wednesday I glanced at the clock and once again promised myself...just.. one...more..event, then off to bed. Instead, I woke up on my couch at 5 AM, contacts super-glued to my eyeballs, and Bob Costas droning on in the background. I shuffled off to my room with a crick in my neck-but not before I set my lifepartner (aka DVR) for the following night's events. In between events, I soak up the min-bios that either endear you to an athlete more (one mention of a dedicated mom and it's water works for me) or leave you utterly befuddled (Lochte: the grill, the drawings? Some things are best left kept to oneself). Those individual all-around gymnastics finals last week? Sure, it was after 1 in the morning and I had work early the next day but if Mary freakin' Lou Retton is in the house, then so am I. (This also holds true for her Perdue Chicken cooking demonstrations at the mall.) The agony, the ecstasy...this is must see TV the likes of which NBC hasn't been able to pull off since Clooney checked out of the ER and Central Perk kicked those overly-coiffed Friends kids out.

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Now that Phelpsie has all eight medals, I can sleep at night again. Then again, maybe not (Hello, track & field!). For now, I'm captivated. The Olympics are ingrained in my day-to-day life: I secretly size up the wingspan of the tall gentleman standing next to me (he could take Piersol but probably not Lochte), score commuter's dismount from the train in the morning (stick your landing people!) and synchronize my tong movements with the unsuspecting diners at the cafeteria salad bar. Maybe an intervention is in order, but one things for sure-the Olympics aren't just exhausting for the athletes competing-this is one spectator sport that takes it's own kind of endurance.

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