Which is better? Watchingor competing against Michael Phelps?
The answer might not seem obvious to you. After all, perhaps you're not a terribly good swimmer and you're sure you'd embarrass yourself, your family and anyone who might be interested in you on a come-hither basis.
However, what if you competed against the great Olympic swimmer to see who was better at putting golf balls into a plastic cup? Surely you would have a chance. Phelps has terribly short legs and a long torso. This might encourage him to overbalance.
Are you now emboldened? Astonishingly, this fun, at a site called thebestuschallenge.olympic.org, has been created on behalf of the International Olympic Committee. Yes, those frightfully exciting people whose smiles are as rare as a French steak.
Perhaps knowing that NBC's TV offering is but a stale bagel dipped in yesterday's chai, the Olympic committee has created a site where you can post your own videos and see if you are better than a whole host of Olympic luminaries. Are you better than U.S. snowboarder Lindsay Jacobellis, for example? At hula-hooping for 30 seconds.
You are? Good gracious. Well, prove it by shooting the footage of your performance and uploading it to the site by February 28.
Before your enthusiasm shades toward arrogance, I should warn you that Jacobellis is a rather good hula-hooper. Tennis star Rafael Nadal's challenge is no easy volley either. He seems to believe he is a genius at, well, picking up tennis balls and placing them about his person. I have no idea if this talent has ever helped him evade TSA scrutiny.
This whole wheeze was inspired by a Seattle-based ad agency, and I have therefore also embedded footage from King5 TV in Seattle that reveals some of the motivation behind this newest and most engaging of online entertainments.
I stumbled upon this footage only to discover that I actually knew two of the larger brains behind this remarkably sane escapade. They are both in the video and are very nice people, if a little on the odd side.
The more oddly competitive among you will watch all this and immediately want to know the competition rules and what you can win. Well, the main rule appears to be: please don't use your technological skills to shoot video that suggests you are in possession of bionic capabilities. And please don't hurt yourself.
As for the prizes, they seem to include all sorts of Olympic memorabilia and a trip to the Youth Olympic Games in Singapore in August.
So please take the opportunity to choose your weapon wisely and upload your finest videos. Let's face it, you won't be missing much on TV while you do.