The Real America Athlete Shindig 'n' Snack Stand

Inspired by the recent Olympics, Reuters reports China is now having its National Peasant Games, where farmers across the country compete in traditional Olympic-style competitions, as well as ones more tailored toward your local Every Man-- like tire-pushing and tug-of-war.

I was thinking this sort of thing might just be fun for folks here in the outskirts of Pittsburgh, too. You know-- bring some whimsy, optimism and excitement Real America. Because, honestly, with half our players injured, the Steelers can only do so much.

Of course, if we did have our own form of Olympics here, we'd probably have to make a few adjustments. We'd want it to not only truly inspire our sense of local competition, but showcase the tremendous heart and skills we have to offer.

So I've taken the liberty of suggesting a few events that I think we could all really get behind.

  • Mailbox Bashing for Distance. Now you see it, now you don't! Neighbors on our winding back roads never really can be sure whether a special delivery will come in the form of a relocated mailbox. So since witty local teens are already honing their swings, why not put that talent to use? Participants will be driven in 80s Fieros going at 45 miles per hour, and ranked based on swing-force, distance the mailbox goes from its original location, and form.
  • The 100-Meter Rusted Out Car Push. Now that unique classic fixxer-upper opportunity that you never quite had the time or funds to upgrade can still be seen and admired through this exciting test of brawn and bravery! Burnt-out Bonnevilles... Cracked Corvettes... Gear-shot Gremlins... All are welcome in this tournament of strength and streamlined design. Can you go the distance to secure the gold?
  • Roadsign Reappropriation for Speed. You know that Stop sign you've always had your eye on that would look so good on the wall of your basement family room? Or that hysterical road marker that reads "Wanker Drive" that you and your buddy Donnie have had so many laughs over? This event gives you the chance to show your sign-removal stuff. Participants are graded on speed, dexterity and overall subtlety. The winner of this event gets to keep the sign.
  • Marijuana Crop Camouflage. This time of year, police helicopters take to the skies looking for patches of green illegal substances among the withering brown corn stalks. This event is a test of wit. Whoever can most quickly and effectively camouflage his crop of wacky weed growing in unknowing Farmer Fred's cornfield takes Gold in this event.
  • Freestyle Cow-tipping. Bossy's goin' down! This event promises to be very popular. Show off your x-treme skilz by sending a wake-up call to our area's bovine population. The one event that truly proves the phrase, "Ya snooze, ya lose." Style counts here, so be creative! Cushions will be provided for all toppling cattle, to accord with Humane Society standards.
  • Predicting When The Cows Come Home. My friend Scoobie's uncle is great at this, and I think could be an important contender in this event. "The cows should be home any minute now," he said once during a picnic, and I laughed, thinking he was just kidding. Then seconds later all the cows came trooping in and put themselves into the barn. There, they made themselves lunch and did the dishes and started their book group discussion. It was really impressive. (They were reading Animal Farm.) Predictions in these on-location events will be accepted down to the tenth of a second. Whoever predicts closest to the cows' actual ETA receives a gold Real America Athlete Shindig kitchen wall clock.
  • The Ninety Degree Pick-Up Winch. How many pick-up truck drivers a year overestimate the abilities of their vehicle to go off-road? And how many of them end up backwards over an embankment? This event showcases skill while acting as an important safety tutorial for when the worst happens. How long will it take you to get your buddies who have an even bigger pick-up truck to come, and winch your truck to solid ground again? Find out.
  • The Inflatable Lawn Ornament Installation Precision Test. As the winter holidays approach, these days it seems that anyone who's anyone has a giant inflatable snowman, Santa, Grinch or reindeer bobbing festively in their yard. But setting these ornaments up with proper power from the house, good air output, and consistent inflation can be challenging. This competition adds a fun technical aspect to the games.
  • Corn Maze Racing. Anyone who's ever played on a farm knows the claustrophobic fear that can overcome you when wandering, lost and confused, through tall corn rows. This test requires nerves of steel, as entrants must find their way out of jagged, dark and scary cornrows the quickest. Your competitors, dressed as hockey-masked raving maniacs with chainsaws, will be hot on your trail to add that extra element of suspense. Outwit, outlast... out of the cornfield.
Well, those are my preliminary ideas, anyway-- though I'm certainly up for suggestions from you all. With the economy so low, and so many folks feeling the stress of day-to-day life, we need something special to look forward to. And I think the Real America Athlete Shindig 'n' Snack Stand (yes, cotton candy and deep-fried Oreos on a Stick will be available at the concession stands) would be a great way to bring us all together, boost morale and really show the world what hard-working Americans are made of.



Da Old Man said...

Great post, as usual.

Giants kind of beat up on the Steelers yesterday, as I'm sure you noticed.

All the more reason for the games.

Your car pushing event reminded me that back when I worked in an auto parts store, a customer owned a Yugo, and I asked him if he knew why rear window heaters were standard equipment on a Yugo...Nope...I told him it's to keep your hands warm when pushing it. Very forward thinking, those Yugo car designers. The 1986 Yugo may become the official car of the Real America Olympics.
If you decide to have a winter version, may I suggest the downhill snow saucer event. It would be sort of like pool. Pick a deignated spot to land. Anyone who is able to control one of those things and wind up within a few hundred feet would win and be declared the greatest Olympian ever.

Jenn Thorson said...

Da Old Man- Yeah, the Steelers have it a bit rough this season. So some athletic prowess on a local level probably isn't such a bad idea. :)

Ah yes. The Yugo.... I'd quite forgotten about it and its track record of service.

Having ridden one of those snow saucers you mention, I agree, that would be astounding skill to get it within a certain range. I recall ending up under the table holding my neighbor's beehouses...

Fortunately the bees were dormant, since I certainly wasn't. :)

ReformingGeek said...

Great post! I'm looking forward to these events. Another event possibility: Holiday Decorations Hide'N'Seek - Thieves leave clever clues as to the new location of the decorations and the 1st person to find their own stuff wins!

Jenn Thorson said...

Reforming Geek- Beautiful idea!

That would be a really in-keeping addition to the Games.

In fact, just the other night on the news it seemed a lady in a mini-van was getting a head start on this event, with a trunk-full of missing Halloween decor.

Matt said...

I blogged about this a while ago...but yours is way funnier and better written.

Funny post!!

Jenn Thorson said...

Matt- I remember reading about some creative rural hijinks, so I'll have to pop over and check your archives to refresh my memory on the details. I always enjoy your posts!

Jay said...

Now see what you've done! You've gone and given a whole new generation of witless teens some great new ideas!

Shame on you!

And you forgot Bin Rolling and Signpost Reorientation.

Jay said...

Now see what you've done! You've gone and given a whole new generation of witless teens some great new ideas!

Shame on you!

And you forgot Bin Rolling and Signpost Reorientation.

Chat Blanc said...

Loves it!

I'm soooo gonna be haulin' my ratty old broken down couch in the back of my crappy pickem' up truck to your neck of the woods to watch these events.

Anna Lefler said...

Oh, that is AWESOME. Damn, you're good.



Jenn Thorson said...

Chat Blanc- No need, Sandy- ratty old couches will be provided for everyone (I mean, heck, we certainly have enough of 'em to go around). Unless, of course, you were just looking for a good reason to get rid of that sofa? :)

Anna- :) Thanks.