The day started with the breakfast of champions again; a McDonald’s breakfast bagel and starbucks internet. We were meeting at the USA House a 10:30 to see if it was something we’d want to come back to or not. Oh… My… God. It started out slow, but man, was this place awesome. Our fearless leader of the USAB was nice enough to give us day passes. We had plans for the day to go out and see some stuff, but ended up literally staying there the entire day. I got there first at 10:40 or so and walked in. There were TV’s everywhere upstairs and downstairs with everything on, couches, American outlet to charge your American stuff (insert grunt of happiness), gourmet desserts and food, an endless bar, and a deck with an upper level—and everything was unlimited, and free. Just one little desert thing would cost about $5 at some fancy pants restaurant, and I probably ate about a $100 worth of desserts. I think I had about 7 little crème brule mini dish things. At about 11:30 the others showed up and were amazed as I was. I told them “this si definitely a place we want to come back to.” Which was the purpose of this ‘introductory’ visit. We ended up staying there until 11pm. I went souvenir shopping and grabbed a few shirts to look at them, and then folded them back and stood there thinking what I should get, but the price tags said “don’t bother.” The coolest jacked there was $450, and a t-shirt was $60. Like, just a normal t-shirt. People started asking me “do you have this in medium?” and “where’s the men’s and women’s section?” I haven’t shaved in two days and am wearing pants and a blue shirt, which apparently makes me look like I know what the hell I’m doing. Even on the walk over some guy asked me where Barclays is, and I said “it’s on this road, just two more blocks and on the right.” I would’ve been more British of me to not actually know where it was, but give him directions nonetheless, but somehow I did actually know what I was talking about… weird. I though about actually pretending to work for the souvey shop for a bit, but quickly abandoned the idea and ate some more dessert. I think there’s about a 3-5 year difference with/out facial hairage. I guess it’s just part of my “Hair-itage.” It’s a pun, get it? Am I funny yet? No? fine, then we’ll just keep slogging through this overly wordy and droll account of nothingness in the midst of something-ness. Atheletes started to trickle in, and once you get to talking with those around you, you quickly realize that about 90% of the people in the room are Olympians; it’s like a family business. “I was on the ’92 Team.” “I was ’88. Do you have any kids competing?” “Not in this one. My daughter’s a skier.” “Oh, really? Skiing? My daughter’s a rower. Well you’ll have fun in Sochi in two years.” “Yeah, I wish water skiing was an Olympic sport, then she could do that here, too.” “Yeah, it’s probably for the best they don’t allow mechanized sports.” I learned something. They played American music from iconic American artists like Johnny Cash, JayZ, and Beyonce, and various pop rubbish you hear over the waves. The walls were lined with pictures of USA athletes; rhythmic gymnastics, archery, pingpong, taekwondo and other smaller sports.
Later it turned into a big party. Some rowers walked in. Holy shit. Huge people. Rowers are huge amazon women with gigantic back muscles. Before we knew who those people from our country were with gold medals around their necks, we tried to guess their sport by the body type and build. There’s so much skill and whatnot involved in all the sports, but it ultimately comes down to who’s bigger in a lot of sports. Susan grabbed one to take a picture and told me and dad to hop in. I feel so small next to this giant woman, however I’m very motivated to train hard after seeing all of these medalists. It got crowded later where someone would sidestep by you and there medal would bump against your shoulder. This is a crazy awesome atmosphere. They had little presentations for/by the coaches from/to the athletes. Rowing first, then later the silver medal archery team. We met a shooter. It was cool to hear him talk about how he has to work to pay for practice and life in general, well, not really cool per se, but It was fun to talk with a fellow minor sport, even though shooting is about 5 times more popular in the US than badminton in terms of competition. He’s a bartender in Colorado Springs. In my mind I pictured some guy breaking in and trying to rob the place, and this guy shoots the gun out of his hand. I saw the little gymnast who got silver or bronze at Beijing; the one they always pointed the camera at. She’s super small. Our fearless leader was able to get us passes for tomorrow, too, at the expense of one of our badminton tickets.
Out fearless leader of the USAB showed up with his friend, Mike, who explained how our fearless leader had the easiest life ever. Worked for the military at the airforce base. Wanted to get an advanced degree so he didn’t have to go to war. The love advanced degrees, but it was in recreation. They still let him do it. After that his job was aide to the head of something, on US soil, escorting the top official’s 18 year old daughter to football games and getting paid with his 6 year pay salary that he had only worked 2 years for. Apparently he was on the record as having served for four extra years, so he got a bump in pay. From there he got a job as head of westpoint recreation department and got medals and shit like the guys who kill people, or maybe gave them out, I couldn’t quite hear. It’s loud. From there something bad happened, and as it was described, “he fell flat on his ass into a bed of roses called chief executive officer of usa badminton.” Mike Rolled his eyes and laughed. They’ve known each other all their lives.
I went to sleep in the night time. I know, right? Thrilling narrative.