Here's another way to stir up the waters

Postcard from Melbourne

March 27, 2007|By Kevin Van Valkenburg | Kevin Van Valkenburg,Sun Reporter

Don Talbot, the former coach of Australia's swim team, took a little dig at Americans this week in an interview with The Age. Asked who deserved to call himself the greatest swimmer of all time, Michael Phelps or Ian Thorpe, Talbot went with his countryman, Thorpe, but qualified it by saying Phelps could surpass the Thorpedo after the world championships.

"Thorpe is still No. 1 in my opinion, and Phelps doesn't outdo him yet, but Thorpe's not swimming this meet, so Phelps has every chance to go ahead of him," Talbot told the newspaper. "The Americans want to claim they invented Jesus Christ before he came, and the same with Phelps. They were saying he was the greatest in the world when Thorpey was the thing."

I'm confused. Do Australians really see us this way? And is this actually what drove Mel Gibson, who grew up in New South Wales, to make The Passion of the Christ?

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