Tuesday, August 03, 2021

Rainbow Olympics

Yeah, I’m tired too after staying up ungodly hours to cheer on our favorite soccer-playing lesbians/the U.S. Women’s National Team in their eventual loss to Canada. Honestly, the team just hasn’t had that chemistry or spark all tournaments, and hats off to all the other nations for bringing their best. Also, a potential bronze medal in the Olympics is nothing to sneeze at (particularly now because the Delta Variant is not fucking around, people). While there have been disappointments and the Games have deep institutional issues that need to be addressed, I’ve largely enjoyed watching the Tokyo Games. In particular I’ve loved watching the female athletes for, um, obvious reasons but also because it’s wonderful watching women who have dedicated years of their lives to their sport achieve at the top of their abilities. Oh, that’s the obvious reason you were thinking of too? Right, right – that’s what I meant at first, too. Ahem.

One of my other favorite things about watching this year’s Olympics is how very, truly gay they are. We are at 180 athletes and counting who are out during these Games, which I read would astoundingly make Team Rainbow the 14th largest team out of all the nation’s competing at this year’s Games. Alphabet Mafia, represent. But not only have more athletes been out, they’ve also been more out about being out. Like, demonstrative displays of queerness have been everywhere so far. Honestly, I couldn’t have imagined this many loud, proud, rainbow-repping queer women playing for their nations 10 or even five years ago. Those who knew back then knew. But now? These out athletes want everyone to know. Representations, personified. (Now, the out Tokyo Olympians list is overwhelmingly female, with only a small fraction of out male athletes – so there’s obviously still work to be done. But, well done, ladies. And special shout out to the pioneering non-binary and trans athletes making their Olympic debuts. We see you.)

At this point you’re probably saying, come on, how gay could it be, Snarker? Are you being all hyperbolic for effect again, per usual? While it’s true none of the athletes rode a unicorn with matching rainbow mane and tail up to the podium, uh, pretty damn close. I mean if Raven Saunders above wasn’t a hint at how gay shit is about to get, well, I don’t know what else to do but show you. Seeing is believing. The Queer is Out There.

Raven Saunders, USA, Shot Put

Self-described “flaming gay” shot putter Raven Hulk Smashed her way to a silver medal. In her post-win interview, she shouted out “the LGBTQ” community. On the podium, she crossed her arms as in protest to represent the “intersection of where all people who are oppressed meet.” And, if that wasn’t cool enough, she posted this on Twitter. I mean. I surrender. Final Boss Lesbian, FTW.
EDIT: My sincere condolences to Raven whose mother passed away unexpectedly today. Strength to her and her family.

Erica Sullivan, USA, Swimming
If I were a little younger instead of a wise elder gay (what, might as well lean in), I would be all over Erica Sullivan. I mean, not physically or in a creepy stalkery or unhealthy way. But, let’s just say it’s probably good there weren’t queer cuties’s Instagrams or TikToks for me to obsess over when I was but a baby gay. Also, you have to give Erica endless respect for shooting her shot with Tobin Heath and Christen Press during her post silver medal-winning press conference. Seriously, have I mentioned how delightful she is? Like, maybe she’s really a unicorn with matching rainbow mane and tail after all.

Nike Lorenz, Germany, Field Hockey
Admittedly, I don’t know anything about Nike. She does not appear to be on the list of Out Olympians in Tokyo. But, um, her sock band is 100% Here and Queer. So, thanks for the representation.

Hollie Pearne-Webb, Great Britain, Field Hockey

Not to be outdone by their German counterparts, Team GB is repping an even bigger sock rainbow, in the form of a captain’s band. Hollie somehow also does not appear to be on the Out Olympians list. So we appreciate the fashion statement, which to me reads as clearly as a Time magazine cover, but then I’m just a humble member of the lesbian blogging community.

Gabriela DeBues-Stafford, Canada, Running

Told you things were gonna get gayer. Canadian 1,500m runner competed over the weekend with rainbow hair. She IS on the Out Olympians list, so it’s signed, sealed and totally queer.

Sharni Williams, Australia, Rugby

I told you so. When I tell you I did a double-take when I was watching the rugby matches and Sharni Williams and her rainbow rugby helmet showed up, I mean I nearly hurt my neck whipping it around so hard. Like, it really doesn’t get gayer than this shit. (And yes, duh, Sharni is on the Out Olympians list.) I thought Olympic women’s skateboarding was pretty gay. I knew field hockey and soccer are always gay. But, somehow, I just wasn’t prepared for how gay rugby came to play. Respect.

For all these women, no matter how they did in their respective events, I wish them nothing but golden memories at the end of their Rainbow Olympics.

EDITED TO ADD: (Event After Original Post)

Poppy Starr Olsen, Australia, Skateboarding

Poppy competed in the first-ever women’s park skateboarding competition this week. The Out Olympian made sure to keep things rolling and gay with a small but prominent rainbow sticker on her helmet. Safety, and gayness, first, Olympians!


Aleksandra Jarmolińska, Poland, Shooting

You know you’ve messed up when a real, live OLYMPIAN emails you to say, hey, you left me off your list! And indeed, I egregiously left Alex (we’re on a first-name basis like that because, you know, we email, ahem!) off my list. The Polish sports shooter’s act of rainbow solidarity came in the Opening Ceremonies – THE OPENING CEREMONIES (and right behind the flag bearers, will my embarrassment for having missed this FIRST THING ever end?) – when she walked in with her national team sporting a rainbow mask (and looking very dapper, I must say).
She has also courageously spoken out for equality in home country of Poland, where she is one of the county’s first out Olympians. Poland does not legally recognize same-sex marriages, so Alex and her fiancée plan to get married in Denmark. Go, Alex. Cheering for a more equal world, always.


Anonymous said...

Love it all!

But near the end of the piece, there are a couple of mistakes (for example:'guy' instead of 'gay' ).

Carmen San Diego said...

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E a seleção de vôlei hein?


kj said...

Hannah Roberts, bmx!!!! She won silver last Saturday.