I enjoyed Mike Schneider's recent column about his memories of summers in his youth. We must be about the same age, because those are the same memories I have, except I remember choking on more peas that firing them out a straw.
The one thing I'll always remember is my mother telling me to enjoy the nice weather while I can. "Turn off the TV and get outside!" she'd say. I also remember promising myself that I wouldn't put the same pressure on my kids when I grew up. Well, here I am, grown up (although some disagree that I have) and guess what I'm telling my kids to do?
My problem is, I can't yell at my kids when I'm the one with the TV on.
I love watching sports. July starts with Wimbledon for the first two weeks. While that's going on, the Tour de France kicks in. I did a lot of PVRing on Championship Sunday at Wimbledon; not only was Canada's own Milos Raonic in the final match - the first Canadian male to get there - but I had to record the Tour as well, since I committed to going outside by volunteering for the Tour de Delta that day.
So that's over, time to go outside! Except that the British Open is now on and it's one of the most dramatic showdowns in golf history. Fortunately, all these events are from Europe, so the eighthour time difference plays in my favour. By noon, everything is finished. That's about the time my teenage kids wake up anyway, so they can't accuse me of being a hypocrite.
Usually I get my fill watching the end of the Tour around the third week of July. Not this year. Almost immediately we run into the Republican and Democratic conventions in the U.S. Now, you're probably saying, "But those aren't sports!' and you'd be right. They are more like professional wrestling combined with the circus and a train wreck. Drama, intrigue, underhanded tactics, insults - you can't make this stuff up. How either of these people have made it this far is beyond me.
Just when I think I can finally get back to summer, the Olympics start this weekend. Usually, I just enjoy watching the competitions. Put a Canadian athlete in the mix and I'm all in. This time, it's going to be different. Real different.
In Rio, half the show will be the sports, but the other half is going to be what's going on outside of the competitive arena. The Russians are already mired in doping scandals. There's turmoil with the organizers. The Zika virus has many athletes staying home. I'm guessing that CNN will get better ratings than NBC or CBC, just by covering all the "breaking news" that will be happening around Rio while the Games are underway.
Before we know it, the closing ceremonies will be on, and we'll only have two weeks left before school starts. And in typical Vancouver tradition, that means the PNE. And in typical PNE tradition, that means rain.
At least when it rains, I won't feel guilty about watching my PVR'd Tour de France...
Brad Sherwin, MBA has over 25 years' experience in marketing, public relations and business strategy. He is currently the director of marketing for a national non-profit organization.