To go or not to go
13 February, 2014
To go or not to go
There cannot be more fun in the world than having a chance to attend Olympic Games – the most fascinating pastime, invented by man ever. Not everybody is lucky enough to have the pleasure of course. Some of us get an occasional chance though, like myself – I have had my felicitous Olympic moments a couple of times in the past. There is no way to disallow the opportunity of feeling part of the global Olympic family. The temptation is
so big that you just pack up and take off to where the games are on, even if you are laid up with a tough case of pneumonia or bleeding ulcers in the stomach.
So why have some of us bristled at the pronouncement of the Georgian Winter Olympic Team’s participation in the Sochi Games? What was wrong with the desire to go and show the wounded Nation’s still vibrant muscle to the expectant world? Well, there certainly is a sore point in the whole deal – the badly screwed-up and blatantly dead-ended Russian-Georgian relations, but athletes will always be athletes, and politics would be the last thing they would make any serious sacrifices for – their sporting interests are above anything else. And this is natural! They are no longer captives of the now dead-and-gone soviet political kinks and dictatorial pranks. It would have been preposterous on part of the current Georgian government to have decreed the ban on the Sochi Olympiad. Most of the world would not have understood it. Speaking technically, it was only a smart move to let the Team go and do the job in Sochi. Actually, an angered man’s position is always a loser’s stance. Nobody likes to deal with hurt and angered dudes who are ceaselessly bagging for justice to have its way. Only happy people are the favorites of society. And fair dealing is not so easy to elicit from the powers that be. It takes a lot of patience and time to achieve the desirable. That’s where Georgia is right now. Georgia needs a lot of patience which we have always lacked as a nation and as individuals too. On the other hand, how long does the world want us to keep our composure? Sometimes, the wait seems to be interminable, and hence – unbearable. Our historic lands are gone and we are in a status of an occupied land. The fact is dreadfully depressing for our national psyche. And the impotence to deal with the annoyingly unsolved territorial problem is offensive. And the way out is heartbreakingly blurry. Yes, the Georgian Team is there to compete in the fairest and finest of the contests between the best and the fittest, but how do you want to win with such an inhibiting burden on the shoulders and on the mind too? And it is still OK that we are in Sochi. We had to be there! What would have given us a protest? Nothing! Nobody would have noticed our zeal to remonstrate. Yes, there was a clash of opinions in the country about the most optimal decision. Ideas differed and objections against our participation in the games were in abundance. To go or not to go – that was the question! The Shakespearian question mark was bold-typed and glaring. The fact of the matter is that Georgia’s historical fate is to have been eternally caught in-between a rock and a hard place – always torn apart between those who were stronger, and always around and ready to snatch away our hope to stay alive and whole. The choice to go to Sochi was not a result of an accidental casting of lots. It was an unrelenting logic of that historically stereotyped and conventional road – the cruel nonstop path. We had no desire to look more miserable than we already look. Time and chance in the Games if nothing else! We might win something as well. If not, we would at least parade with the rest of the world and do that as proudly as the hopeless status quo allows. Losing or winning in the Olympiad might be as broad for us as it is long. The expectations are low unless our good luck emerges from the blue through the grace of a magic wand. What matters more is the result of our decision to appear in Sochi, whatever the performance. Going to Sochi meant embracing the world with our valor, intelligence and benevolence rather than sucking up to Russia. We are not strong enough to fight in wars and win. The only chance for us is to use our brains even if we are being rubbed the wrong way every now and again. Now that the die is cast and we are back into the discourse with Russia, we need all the smarts we have ever had. Flogging a dead horse would not make any sense. Going to Sochi might not have been the best move we have ever made – only the history will judge that, but our job now is to make the best out of that possibly doubtful bargain. Let’s go hypothetical for a second and imagine that the members of the Georgian Team had stuck a nice little scandalous move of protest into that gorgeous opening ceremony in Sochi, to make the world conscious once again of our unending strife with Russia. Just scream it out, turn around and leave! Wow!
It is frustrating that all the alleys around that we have to walk are blind and dark. The visibility is so poor that we don’t even know what kind of a move was Georgia’s participation in the Olympics in the host-country which has an official position of an occupant of our lands, but the sum and the substance of the matter is that we have to move forward. Standstill is deadly even if the frozen conflicts feel milder than the burning ones. And even if we hate the idea, our coziest and most convenient political niche is still under somebody’s wings. Not good! But time is teaching us to stop building upon sand. No more castles in the air, folks!
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