Madison is getting hit with its first big snow of the year today. Here's what it looks like from my backyard:
Picnic tables are great for entertaining and they're also a useful tool to measure snow accumulation:
I went to work this morning, but after a couple of hours of staring out the windows, we decided to call it quits. Snow day! I feel like a kid again. Of course, kids don't have to worry about digging their car out of the snow tomorrow morning. But then again, kids also aren't still getting paid while sitting at home ;-)
So I'm settling in for some lunch and perhaps a beer and then thinking about making some snow angels or cross country skiing around the neighborhood. It's too bad NBC is too stupid to show the Olympics live during the day. Their ratings would skyrocket in the upper midwest. Speaking of the Olympics...
I care, but I'd care much more if I didn't know the results of everything before I see it.
Posted by at February 16, 2006 12:06 PM
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|# February 16th, 2006 2:59 PM james|
|stupid? kris, youre one of maybe 10 people total actually watching. no one cares about the winter olympics. no one. |
|# February 16th, 2006 6:28 PM Daddy|
|As a sports-talk radio host put it: I watch them (hockey players) for 82 games during the regular season. Why would I tune in to watch them now?
And hockey is the only real sport in the winter games.
The luge? Jumping and landing on your ass and sliding for half a mile? Damn, all that time I thought I was just clumsy; I'm really an athlete.
|# February 16th, 2006 8:33 PM Walleye|
|Watching the Winter Olympics is as close to real winter as some of us can get... My sport of choice (the one that helped pay my bills in college) is televised live at 4AM my time. So I tape it, then watch it when I get home from work. So at least one person does in fact watch the Olympics. |
|# February 16th, 2006 8:37 PM kris|
|by "no one", James really means 14.3 million people
no, the Olympics don't get Idol-like ratings, but it's also not like Walleye and I are the only ones watching
|# February 16th, 2006 10:18 PM james|
Since its opening on Friday, the Turin games have been running well below the 2002 Salt Lake City games in viewership interest. Much of that was expected, but Tuesday's ratings was the first alarming sign for NBC that increased TV competition has taken a toll.
"increased TV competition?" give me a break! no one is watching because the Olympics are DULL DULL DULL. "international competition" my ass, it's all about selling a touchy-feely "we are the world" warm fuzzy feeling to couch potatoes across the nation. you think it isn't a business? try using the olympic rings anywhere without a license - you'll get a cease and desist letter faster than a jamaican bobsledder on santa's sleigh. im half surprised that i havent gotten a letter about our little olympics logo yet.
very few people actually CARE about the olympics, espcially the winter olympics. you know why viewership was so high the last few times around? because then, NBC was the top network! people watched the olympics because they watched NBC, and NBC was showing the Olympics instead of the regularly-scheduled "Seinfeld" or "Friends." make no mistake - if CBS was showing the olympics, the ratings would be much higher. make no mistake - no one, now or then, gives a rat's ass about michelle kwan or bode miller.
im sure that other nations' press will pick up on the fact that american idol is trouncing the olympics in the ratings and jump at the opportunity to rip on us Americans, calling us "detached," "self-centered," "arrogant" - i can just hear it now, "zhey do not care about zhe rest of zhe world!! zhey do not care about zee olympics!!" these people are idiots - they'd say the same thing if NBC just televised paint drying for 2 weeks straight, as long as it was "international" paint. "how can zhey not care about zee international paint!?! zhey are zoo arrogahnt!"
i saw a map the other day of "olympic interest" by state:
how would you interpret these results? if you said "cold-weather states have a greater interest in winter sports," you are wrong. the correct interpretation is "in states where there is nothing better to do than sit around and watch TV b/c the state is boring and it's really cold outside, people welcome a new show to stare at on the television."
that's reality folks. deal with it.
|# February 16th, 2006 10:57 PM Walleye|
|Oh, That cleared it up... James just meant I'm the only person in California who's watching. :) |
|# February 16th, 2006 11:00 PM james|
James just meant I'm the only person in California who's watching.
nah, leno is probably watching too. but he has to - it's his job.
|# February 16th, 2006 11:22 PM james|
|ok, i admit, this clip is funny:
link to video file (Evgeny-Plushenko---Sex-Bomb)
|# February 17th, 2006 8:53 AM KVBigSis|
|I WANT to watch the Winter Olympics, but NBC makes it impossible with their vile coverage. They refuse to cover an event in its entirety. Last night I saw some of the Snowboard Cross event and it was FUN! I watched the quarterfinals and one semifinal and then heard "And we now return you to Men's Figure Skating." Screw that! So off went the TV, and once again I told myself I don't watch TV to get pissed off, and I should really stop watching the Olympics. |
|# February 17th, 2006 9:45 AM BVBigBro|
|Don't worry KV. Paris-Roubaix is coming to OLN on April 9. |
|# February 18th, 2006 6:34 PM kris|
|to the 50% that care about the Olympics--USA has a program called "Olympic Ice". It's just a daily hour long show about figure skating. it's very refreshing to just watch a program about ONE sport rather than dealing with all the jumping around NBC does.
anyway, Brian Boitano was on it today. that guy is hilarious. do you know that he has actually skated to South Park's "What would Brian Boitano do?"
|# February 19th, 2006 10:50 PM marcus|
|I agree NBC does a bad job of covering the games. Not only that but idiots on national news think we would like to know the results hours before we have even a chance to watch them.
The skiing rocks! Hey dude, slide on your @$$ at 80mph and then get back to us.
One last note. There is nothing to do in New York and in Washington state? Hmmmmm-okay.
|# February 20th, 2006 12:23 PM james|
One last note. There is nothing to do in New York and in Washington state? Hmmmmm-okay.
have you been to either place? outside of NYC, NY is no different from upstate wisconsin. same with WA, outside of sea-tac.
|# February 20th, 2006 2:19 PM marcus|
|And there is tons of stuff do in the middle of Indiana's corn ocean? |
|# February 20th, 2006 2:28 PM james|
And there is tons of stuff do in the middle of Indiana's corn ocean?
all tv's in indiana only get one channel. "basketball"
|# February 20th, 2006 2:35 PM kris|
|does it really matter where you live? if you're a boring person you'll be bored even in the most exciting place in the world. if you're interesting, you'll find something fun to do no matter where you are.
we're all not sullen teenagers.
|# February 20th, 2006 2:45 PM james|
|and if you're a republican living in NY, you voted for bush, yet your state is still colored blue. we're talking about the map.
or, are you asserting that wisconsin has more boring people than indiana?
|# February 20th, 2006 2:48 PM kris|
|no, my only argument is that I don't buy that Olympics-watching is somehow correlated to how boring a state is. |
|# February 20th, 2006 2:50 PM james|
|well you're wrong. it is. so there.
everyone knows that tv viewership goes up in the winter. that's why there are no new shows in the summer. do you think that people just become more boring as it gets colder?
|# February 20th, 2006 2:53 PM kris|
|maybe it's not related to boring--it's related to cold, which goes to the original argument you tried to refute, which was that people watched the Olympics more if they were from a state where cold weather sports were popular. |
|# February 20th, 2006 2:54 PM james|
One of the most basic measures of television viewing is the number of hours
|# February 20th, 2006 2:56 PM kris|
|what does that matter? we're not talking about overall ratings, we're talking about relative ratings of one event. |
|# February 20th, 2006 2:57 PM james|
|i wouldnt exactly call curling or bobsledding "popular" anywhere. you might win that argument with hockey, but only in minnesota and upstate NY. |
|# February 20th, 2006 2:59 PM kris|
|you really have something against upstate NY don't you? it's a good thing you didn't go to Cornell! |
|# February 20th, 2006 3:04 PM james|
|1) it's colder in the winter
2) more people watch tv when it's colder b/c there is less to do
3) because there is less to do in the cold, states that get cold have less to do in them, making them more "boring" than other states. (boring means LESS STUFF TO DO. look it up.)
4) the map of interest in the olympics shows that states that are more boring have a higher olympic interest.
5) my argument was that people arent interested in the olympics b/c theyre olympics, instead, they're interested b/c the olympics represent "something new on TV," tv that they would be watching anyway.
i really dont know how much clearer i can be.
|# February 20th, 2006 3:05 PM james|
|huh? what do i have against upstate ny? what did i do to insult them?
i stated that hockey is very popular there... what the heck? are you reading and responding to different comments than i am or something?
|# February 20th, 2006 3:09 PM BVBigBro|
|I'm sorry, but its been cold in Kansas, one of your low interest states, and it has snowed and sleeted on several days during the olympics in many of the southern states on your little map.
No one in the south gives a damn about the winter sports in large part because they are not played there and people are not familiar with them. In addition NBC has adopted the same "show an American at all costs" mentality that wrecked their tennis coverage.
|# February 20th, 2006 3:12 PM kris|
|oh, you made a couple of comments about upstate NY being boring, that's all.
1) some states are cold than others
2) in states with cold weather, people are able to participate in winter sports
3) because they participate in winter sports, they have more of an interest in those sports in general.
4) the map of interest in the olympics shows that states with cold weather have a higher olympic interest.
5) my argument is that people in cold weather states are intersted in the Olympics not because their states are boring, but rather because they've had the opportunity to participate in more of the activities due to their different climate.
|# February 20th, 2006 3:15 PM kris|
|I could write a whole article about how poor NBC's coverage is. |
|# February 20th, 2006 3:15 PM james|
its been cold in Kansas, one of your low interest states, and it has snowed and sleeted on several days during the olympics in many of the southern states on your little map.
the map isn't showing "actual viewship" - it's mapping the results of a poll, taken before the olympics even started. they called people up and asked "are you interested in the olympics?" obviously, the southern states that have been uncharacteristically cold don't have 3 week out weather forecasts.
|# February 20th, 2006 3:17 PM BVBigBro|
|But the actual viewership has been low inspite of bad weather that should, according to your argument, raise ratings. |
|# February 20th, 2006 3:19 PM james|
yes, im well aware of your argument. it's flawed, as ive already pointed out. if you really think the grandma in fargo is watching b/c she has the opportunity to get out and luge on the weekends, and that the grandma down in boca isn't as interested simply because she doesn't have the same opportunity, then i can't help you.
|# February 20th, 2006 3:20 PM kris|
|Well that's true, because Boca Granny probably also luged back in the day in her original home in upstate NY ;-) |
|# February 20th, 2006 3:25 PM james|
But the actual viewership has been low inspite of bad weather that should, according to your argument, raise ratings.
no, my argument is that there are people in cold weather states who watch tv anyway, who have made watching TV a part of their regular schedule, and who welcome anything new thing on tv.
again, my argument has nothing at all to do with actual ratings, only interest. my argument is, and has always been, that the olympics suck, and that people only watch them b/c they're sick of everything else on tv. an abnormal cold spell might increase TV watching overall, but not necesarily olympics.
im not taking a position on that - i have no clue what warm weather people want to watch. but it seems to follow that if, in those areas, tv viewership is up while olympics ratings are down, that only strengthens my theory. (i.e. those people arent yet sufficiently bored with everything else on tv.)
|# February 20th, 2006 3:26 PM BVBigBro|
|No, you said "in states where there is nothing better to do than sit around and watch TV b/c the state is really boring and it's really cold outside, people welcome a new show to stare at on the television". The weather the last two weeks has provided precisely that environment to a large part of the country. Nevertheless, they haven't welcomed the new show to stare at. They are staring at the old show. Therefore, one must conclude that their viewing habits are unrelated to their boring states and cold weather. |
|# February 20th, 2006 3:27 PM james|
Well that's true, because Boca Granny probably also luged back in the day in her original home in upstate NY ;-)
given the number of retirees in florida, if your theory was true, and people watched b/c they were familliar with the sports, you'd expect to see more interest in florida, wouldn't you?
|# February 20th, 2006 3:28 PM kris|
|i would. therefore there's a flaw in my theory.
alternatively, they are old and go to bed early, so maybe ratings would be better simply if NBC started coverage earlier in the day
|# February 20th, 2006 3:29 PM james|
so maybe ratings would be better simply if NBC started coverage earlier in the day
dont the assorted cable nbc's (msnbc, cnbc, etc) show them all day long?
|# February 20th, 2006 4:49 PM kris|
|yeah, but they just show crappy stuff like curling. what maddens me is that the ice dancing JUST ended and NBC could have shown it live somewhere-but they don't. they can still show it at night, but they should let people watch live if they want to. |
|# February 20th, 2006 5:24 PM james|
|i was thinking - since so much is going on at once, why wouldn't nbc contract with a small time but nationwide network like the WB to show olympic events on their channel as well as on nbc? more airtime = more ads, right?
is it that they know most people will watch whatever crap they put on? (in other words, for the most part, people aren't watching because they're interested in a particular event?)
|# February 20th, 2006 7:01 PM kris|
|why wouldn't they use their own networks during the day?
i don't understand their approach at all. they seem to think that we'll just sit and happily watch an event that everyone already knows the outcome of. CBS doesn't take all of the NCAA tourney day games and package them into a show in prime time, they show the damn games live, even if they start at 11 am.
NBC needs to take a cue from OLN and their Tour de France coverage and satisfy the serious fans with live coverage on their networks whenever events are happening and then package everything up at night for the casual fans. They can probably make the nighttime show more interesting if they drop the pretense and recognize that everyone knows who's going to win.
They need to show an event all at once. They shoudn't get us interested in something and then cut away. They should incorporate PTI-like graphics so we all know what is coming up when. People are going to channel surf-you can't stop them, you can only give them more information so they'll actually come back to you.
Where's the local coverage with these Olympics? I should know more about Torino and the character of the town. What about athletes that aren't American?
To its credit, NBC did do one thing right with these Olympics--Olympic Ice is a great show, it's funny as hell and provides some in depth coverage. Unfortunately, they bury it on USA at 6 pm Eastern time. They need more programming like OI.
|# February 20th, 2006 7:56 PM james|
|they should have hired paula, randy and simon to give commentary. hmm, top 10 ways NBC could have made the olympics more interesting, anyone? |
|# February 20th, 2006 9:24 PM Walleye|
|NBC has sort of made an OLN-like move and will have shown all but two of the biathlon events live. Here in the west, the races usually start around 3AM on the USA network. They have also shown a large majority of the Women's and Men's hockey tournaments as well as most of the curling events. Not sure why those were the sports of choice, but as a biathlon fan it has been fantastic, and our 7 mo. old seems to dig curling (bright colors, slow moving, no dancing purple dino). |
|# February 21st, 2006 4:28 PM marcus|
|Unless there is a "boring index" that measures the boredomness of the states the contention that boring states like the Winter Olympics more than the exciting states is just silliness.
It is a very subjective thing boredom is. I lived in a very boring town but had no problems entertaining myself (as long as I had my own digs)