Monday, February 27, 2006

The Women's Cross-Country Sk--Commercial--ii--Commercial--ng--Commercial Finals

I accidentally turned the t.v. on Friday afternoon and NBC was showing the women's 30k cross-country skiing finals.

Even though the Olympics have become far more spectacle than sport, cross-country skiing is still the real deal. Anybody who can ski eighteen miles in a race on a torturously hilly course is a warrior. They're bad asses. And seeing it in high-definition for the first time was a real treat.

So I decide to watch this race, because it's incredibly intense. And here's what I get to see:
4.5 minutes of skiing
2.5 minutes of commercials
2.5 minutes of skiing
3.5 minutes of commercials
3.5 minutes of skiing
3.0 minutes of commercials
7.0 minuts of skiing
2.5 minutes of commercials
1.5 minutes of interviews
2 minutes of commercials

Here are the totals:
19 minutes of coverage
13 1/2 minutes of commercials

How do I know this? It was so bad that I Tivo'd back and timed it. And not only were they showing incredible amounts of commercials, they were cutting the race, even on the final lap. It was a fantastic race, but the emotional impact from watching it was zero. And this was afternoon coverage--it wasn't even prime time for advertising fees.

And people wonder why almost no one in this country cares about the Olympics anymore. It's because NBC has ruined them.

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