Shining, gleaming, streaming, flaxen, waxen

I am vacation this week and as it is hard to get off my night time schedule, I have been fortunate enough to see a good bit of the Olympic coverage. It is thrilling to rally around a favorite team or just marvel and the strength and abilities of each world class athlete.

I have just one bone to pick. It’s not the synchronized swimming nose plugs, or the beach volleyball bikini butt slings or even that guy that licked himself before the race, no I have an issue with the Japanese men’s gymnastics team.

In a sport that is all about clean lines and perfection of form, the Japanese men’s hair is a little jarring and I’m not talking about their tousled moptops. I’m talking about the stark, black shock of underarm hair that flashes out with each arm raise. Even Danell Leyva, who has a 5 o’clock shadow at 10 in the morning has less hair than these guys. Seriously.

Call me picky or overly Americanized, but it’s very disconcerting for me to watch those guys running down the mat, muscles at the ready and then up goes that arm and then all I can see is a forest of dark hair shimmering against an otherwise clean body. My brain is filled with thoughts of sheep shearing and Marine buzz cuts.

I’m not saying that all athletes need to be as shaven as the swimmers, but dang guys, someone give the Japanese gymnasts a pair of trimmers.

Photo by Gregory Bull / AP


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