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Statistically Average Olympics

True representation of nations
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So, I find the Olympics pretty boring. Olympic athletes, especially the ones from countries who stake a lot of national pride on winning medals, are so damn good at their chosen sport that they're no fun to watch. They're just doing what they've been forced to do all their lives. They're practically machines, and the winner always seems to be the one who was pushed the hardest and had the most expensive training program. Everything about competing in the Olympics has been boiled down to scientific precision. Where's the fun in that?

To remedy this situation, stop training athletes for the Olympics. Set them free and let them have real jobs. From now on, simply select individuals who are, physically, statistically average for their chosen nation. Have the International Olympic Committee send surveyors to every competing county, determine what the average height, weight, BMI, etc. is for that nation, and then select random individuals who are as close as possible to being average in all categories. Ethnicities, experience, and hand-eye coordination are factors which should be ignored entirely. No one will be allowed to volunteer for their nation's team. Instead, letters will be sent to all eligible persons, and those who agree to compete for the glory of their country will be taken.

This is preferable because it would be a real contest between nations, not a contest between million-dollar training regimes. May the fittest country win.

The big disadvantage here is that competing third world countries might not do terribly well, which is unfair. To compensate, make each country's GDP per capita a factor. For example, if your nation's GDP per capita is very low, then it's likely that your statistically average person will less physically fit because of a lack of access to healthy food. So these countries will be allowed to select individuals a certain percentile above statistically average. The lower your GDP per capita, the higher percentile individuals you will be allowed to send to the Olympics.

Watching average Joes compete in the Olympics would be, to me at least, much more hilarious and fun. Sure, most of these people would be terrible, but I'd root for my team with all my heart if I knew they honestly represented my country. Besides, this would be an incentive for governments to start paying more attention to the health of their people.

moustache_mcflanigan, Feb 24 2010

Jeux Sans Frontieres http://en.wikipedia...eux_Sans_Frontieres
[DrBob, Feb 25 2010]

Penguins! http://www.youtube....watch?v=L2bTwSfWtsE
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Frankenstein! http://www.youtube....?v=Eza3J4EgEE8&NR=1
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Annotation:







       Hmmm, I think the athletes would resent being "set free" and not because of the loss of glory or income. Have you never taken pleasure in doing someting really, really, well? Something that you can do better than almost anyone else? These folks require competition with others at their level in order to milk the maximum performance out of themselves. The rest of us watch it on TV.
mouseposture, Feb 24 2010
  

       like MXC? I miss that show...
dentworth, Feb 25 2010
  

       // They're practically machines //   

       Eh ? You say that like it's a bad thing ...
8th of 7, Feb 25 2010
  

       The logical conclusion of this Idea is that the winner of each event should be the one who most exactly approaches the average performance. The fun thing is that noboby will know what the average is until everyone in the event has performed!
Vernon, Feb 25 2010
  

       Baked. It's a Knockout/Jeux Sans Frontieres.
DrBob, Feb 25 2010
  

       Until very recently, the Olympics didn't allow professional athletes. And I think that would have pleased you. No doubt, people still trained quite a lot for the Olympics. But people there were fewer people who spent their whole lives working up to the day of the race, and more excited young amateurs out to prove themselves.   

       I know it's not the same thing, but this is kind of why people didn't like it when they allowed professionals into the Olympics.
thejollysin, Feb 25 2010
  

       //competing third world countries might not do terribly well//
oh of course, because when your populace is starving what's important is winning medals.
[edit]hmm... considering that the current thing to do when there's a bit of unrest is to start a war, that might not be a totally bad idea.
  

       [jollysin] could you edit your anno to, you know, make some sort of sense ?
FlyingToaster, Feb 25 2010
  

       If you have selected individuals who are statistically average for their nation, then you must already know the statistical average for that nation. In which case, why bother the competition? All it could do is to prove that your initial assumptions were wrong, and you'd be back to square half.
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 25 2010
  

       George Orr would win a gold medal in every event.
mouseposture, Feb 25 2010
  

       Most Olympians around these parts have regular jobs.
RayfordSteele, Feb 25 2010
  


 

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