Friday, January 9, 2015

Boston's Reformy Olympics

The US Olympics bosses have chosen Boston to make the US bid for hosting the 2024 Olympics. This would be the first time the US has hosted the games since the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt lake City (for which I, true story, was a torch runner) and a real coup for the Massachusetts port city.

But I have learned, through some of my more advanced fake journalism techniques, that the US plans to use the games to showcase our awesometastic Common Core reformy initiatives. Therefore, principles of Core and reform will be applied to these games. Here are some of the CCSS-flavored nougats we can expect to enjoy:

* All athletes for all sports will be assessed for running and swimming skills. Cut scores will be set to insure a 35% failure rate. All athletes who are not ranked as proficient will be sent home. We anticipate that this may thin the field in some sports considerably (e.g. badmitton and weightlifting), but sometimes you have to break a few eggs.

* To show full understanding of the concepts behind their sports, athletes will complete their tasks using multiple techniques. For example, table tennis teams must complete rounds by holding their paddles in their teeth or strapped to their foreheads. Swimmers will be required to complete one lap with feet strapped together, another lap carrying a small farm animal, and a lap wearing those foam #1 fingers on their hands. Shot putters will complete at least half of their throws without using their hands. If they really understand how the sport works, it shouldn't make any difference.

* Athletes will be required to display critical thinking in their competition. We're not really sure what that means, so we're going to lock their equipment in a box, show them four boxes, and make them pick the correct one, and we'll just go ahead and call that a test of their critical thinking.

* Athletes will be required to display grit. Instead of sticking to cushy, comfy mats, gymnasts will be required to complete routines on concrete, beach sand, a giant vat of eels, and a giant air mattress covered with mousetraps. Rowing teams will compete in the open sea, in the middle of shipping lanes, during a gale, dragging shark bait behind their sculls. If they really have grit, it won't matter.

* Costs will be kept low by getting multiple uses out of resources. The court used to assess volleyball skills can also be used for finding the best cyclist. You just have to be creative, and believe. After all-- a court is a court. One size fits all, and a tool

* If an athlete fails to win a medal, his coach will be fired. Also, the athlete's kindergarten teacher will be penalized. Also, the college that his kindergarten teacher attended will be fined.

All ribbons will, of course, be provided by Pearson. And they will all be exactly the same size.


  1. I especially like the critical thinking test, and the failing athlete's college that his kindergarten teacher attended being fined.

    I also enjoyed your post about being a torch runner. How cool is that!! : )

  2. Ah, Peter - thanks for the laughs; truly the best medicine on a gloomy Saturday!