Let's face it; there are several sports in this "Hot. Cool. Yours" Winter Olympics in Mother Russia that Team USA could have done without. Speed skating was a bust; ski jumping was too. Then there are cross-country skiing and curling -- which are as much fun to Americans as peeling paint.
Now that these Sochi Olympics ended on Sunday, February 23 it's time to suggest the International Olympic Committee make several changes to these sports for Pyeongchang, South Korea in 2018.
Slingshot short track speed skating
Why: Is there even a question?
How: Make a boring 5,000 meter race consisting of 30-plus laps -- in those crappy U.S. uniforms -- more interesting by having your coach propel you forward with a giant slingshot! I mean, you already have the padding circling the track so if something went wrong, you're covered. Not only that, it isn't like American speed skaters actually NEED coaches at these Olympics, so it would like playing your fave video game -- getting a nitro boost. Can you imagine how entertaining 500 meters in short track would be?
Why: Just hear me out.
How: When athletes like Noelle Pikus Pace finished their races at these Olympics you felt like something was missing; admit it. I know I did, and I KNOW fellow American Katie Uhlaender, she of the pink spiky hair who was fourth, could have used it. So after these sliders wobble, bobble and blast headfirst past the finish line in their skintight suits and sleds, why not set up a 30K jump for maximum entertainment? Ski jumpers wear skintight suits too, you know. Why not give skeleton silver medalists like Noelle a chance to shoot down another much larger hill and fly off into the distance for maximum points -- and a shot at gold?
Laser tag cross country skiing
Why: Did you WATCH cross country skiing?
How: The Americans have had ZERO luck winning medals at any Winter Olympics in cross-country skiing. Perhaps the reason -- besides Scandinavian or cold-weather countries being good -- is there isn't enough risk! Nothing provides more incentive to a human being than to be the hunted. I guarantee if you stick an 18-year-old from South Central on the slopes and you tell him he's a target, you'll get a gold medal performance worthy of 25 Norwegian Olympic legends. Give him a laser tag gun and well, you get the idea.
Snowball ski jumping
How: Again, like skeleton, ski jumping seems to be missing something when some person in a skintight suit shoots down a hill. In ski jumping, said athlete flies into the distance, leaning forward like a trained eagle bending its talons into a V -- their beaks pointed forward searching for a soft landing. Where's the fun in that? Let me tell you what would be more fun. Let opponents hurl snow balls at them while they try to find a soft, comfortable landing spot.
How: Any curler screaming at the tops of their lungs as they push a 30-pound stone toward its target -- then sweep it -- would kill to have the opportunity to throw a cross-check into their opponent standing beside them (even mild mannered Great Britain and especially Canada.). To clobber them with that broom -- especially for points, would feel like a dream. This levels the playing field, allowing warm weather lands like Samoa, Tonga, and New Zealand to enter -- or any country where a person's calves are bigger than my head -- and win.
Though it's much too late to implement these sports in Sochi -- it is well worth looking into making these five sports a reality at the next Winter Olympics and beyond, giving these poor Americans a chance to win even more medals than a measly 28 -- and offer the other countries a fighting chance.