No need to strain for clear picture

E-mail from Down Under

Summer Olympics

September 16, 2000|By Paul McMullen

As I watched the U.S. gymnastics trials on NBC last month with my family, I remarked that the best thing about going to the Olympics is that I wouldn't have to watch the network's plausibly live, dead-on-arrival coverage of the Games. The promos and programming were so dreadful four years ago, I stopped watching the Atlanta Olympics.

The joys of live TV hit home Wednesday, my first full day in Sydney and the day soccer competition began. I ordered a late dinner in the small restaurant that adjoins our hotel, and ignored my meal while the men's match between Australia and Italy wound down on the overhead TV. The Italians turned a counter attack into the only goal with about 10 minutes remaining. It deflated most of the diners, and the restaurant emptied as soon as the match concluded.

Something about the TV stopped me. The rabbit ears had been taped to the bottom of the set. They were easier to access, and gave new meaning to the phrase Down Under.

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