The beauty of languages means any name can be completely pedestrian to one ear and simply marvelous to another, and the Olympics bring us a cultural cornucopia of calls. What sounds magnificent in one language can have a whole new meaning read aloud in another, and sometimes the magic of pronunciation makes reading a whole new challenge.
With that, a letter from the author (who in the process of writing this article came up with his new band name — Monobob Seger) using an amalgamation of no less than 81 athlete names from the 2022 Winter Olympics.
This may not be for you, dear Rieder, er reader (or Rieders), but for those of us who’ve studied languages — particularly English — the names of the Games can add spice, irony, or just serve as the perfect complement for a story.
If you’d like to know a bit more, read An…
Dear Rieder (or Rieders),
Performances like those from 49-year-old Claudia Pechstein and 40-year-old Nick Baumgartner are inspiring in ways to keep You Young at Hart. For Baumgartner to go from the Hurt and Odor of missing out on a final to winning Gold and smelling like a Roes, all in a few ticks of a Klok? Wild.
And how to pick a favorite event?
They all have their own intrigue. It’s like selecting a favorite (Mono)Bob Seger song. Do you like the uproarious “Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Mann” or are you into the sensual nature of “Knight Moves”? Do you want the introspective “Against the Wind(ingstad)” or would you rather chill on “Main Street“? And don’t forget the build-up of “Turn the Page” — bet you can hear that iconic Horn and Tsymbal right now without even turning it on! What a Song!
An Olympic fan can be born at any minute, as those who Usta swear by the Major leagues can feel new Loevblom when they see a life’s goals fulfilled on their screens by a Young amateur or a Hammy performer. Those who’ve never watched Olympics in their many Winters are suddenly in Love, even when it looks so Frostad in Beijing that we’re almost Shiffrin at home.
Some storylines are Chock full of drama and carry Broadway appeal like “Hamilton“, where a competitor looks Beat but comes back by pure Weal and determination (And Grace, too). Whether they barely Won or posted a perfect Ten, it’s just so Cool.
In fact have no Fear, there’s still time before we’re without the Olympics until the 2024 Sommer Games in Paris. And it won’t be too long before an Americans can take a Carr to the 2028 Games in Los Angeles.
So let’s continue to enjoy seeing people from all walks of humanity (even though Bots are already competing among us at the Olympics).
This is why we spend So many Winters and Summers of our lives with the Olympics, why we Flock to our screens Fora chance to capture lightning in a bottle, to prove that dreams can be fulfilled and we can be whatever we Watabe.
Our Ten Favorite Names of the 2022 Winter Games
10. Caroline Spies (Switzerland) — Can’t trust this Swiss hockey player, who sounds like she’s learned a thing or two about game prep from Bill Belichick.
9. Graeme Fish (Canada) — Wonder if the “snack that smiles back” people have approached him about a sponsorship/product idea.
8. Candy Bauer (Germany) — Read the name. This is a 6-foot-2 gold medalist in men’s bobsled, and he has the coolest and perhaps even most deceptive name.
7. Bart Swings (Belgium) — … and he doesn’t miss. By the way, Feb. 12 is his birthday. A birthday Bart. A Bartday.
4. Beat Feuz (Switzerland) — That’s gold medalist Beat Feuz to you, buster.
3. Cool Wakushima (New Zealand) — Requires no comment.
2. Joos Berry (Switzerland) — When life hands you berries…
1. Maame Biney (Team USA) — The Ghana-born former figure skater could be No. 1 on the strength of her birth name, and not just because she’s a bad— on the speed skating track but also because she says she has an alter ego and it’s almost as strong: Anna Digger.
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