Aug 08

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Defeat Hurts

Man, defeat sucks.  No one likes to lose, but when you lose unfairly…it’s difficult to put into words how that feels.  When no one will acknowledge an error that costs you a possible GOLD MEDAL I’d imagine it’s difficult not to throw a temper tantrum.

Ordinarily, if someone threw a tantrum or a crying fit I’d tell them to knock it off and get off my TV, but this is different.  In fact, it nearly brought *even me* to tears on her behalf.  The agony of defeat is much more bitter when it’s at the hands of an error and judges.

This is Korea’s Shin A Lam.  She’s on the Olympic Fencing Team.

That was her before her match which would send the winner to the Gold Medal match.

I cannot do a better job telling the story, so click on the picture below, and then cry with me.  I’ll wait.

Guys, THE CLOCK DID NOT MOVE.  It should have been a do-over.  By the rules and laws of every playground from kindergarten to college when the CLOCK DOES NOT MOVE YOU DO IT OVER!  Not only did the clock not move, there is no way the other fencer could have made that move in a second or less.  It’s impossible.  Truly.  I don’t know a lot about fencing, but that is one thing I’m sure of, and when I count from where it should have started I get nearly to TWO SECONDS!

I don’t condone tantrums in sports…but, for whatever reason, I feel differently about this.  I want to scoop her up and give her a hug.  This was unfair.  She was robbed of the opportunity to move on.  She didn’t make a mistake, the judges did and it cost her a medal.  Personally, I think it would have been a miracle if she could have gotten her head back in the game enough to fully compete in her bronze medal match.

I’m sorry Shin A Lam.



* As a side note, the timekeeper in this match was a 15 YEAR OLD VOLUNTEER.  I’ll say just this–in a match of this magnitute the timekeeper should have been an ADULT, and I do have some sympathy for the kid, but really.  PUSH THE DAMN BUTTON!


Shin got a “special” consolation medal from the International Fencing Federation (FIE), but c’mon; it’s not the same. They might as well have given her a Burger King birthday crown. I mean, at least people have heard of those. And they’ll respect the shit out of you for wearing that majestic diadem.

– Matt Rudnitsky – sportsgrid.com

Oh, a consolation medal recognizing her “aspiration to win and respect for the rules”…WHAT??!!  Oops we eff’d up and screwed you….here’s the lesser known aluminum medal.  Nice try, guys.

Shin rejected the medal, and rightfully so, in my opinion.  ‘It does not make me feel better because it’s not an Olympic medal.

‘I don’t accept the result because I believe it was a mistake.’

You bet it was a mistake!

Permanent link to this article: http://cimblog.cimmy.com/?p=1315


  1. Linda Miller

    I think we even watched that match! I don’t think I knew what was really going on though but I remember that the coaches were taking out money and we were wondering why. I think we changed the channel but I think she was the one that kept screaming every time she got a point against the Americans…I thought that they ended up winning the silver…

  2. cimblog(tm)

    Not unless you saw it alone. The only fencing I saw was the team competition, this was an individual event.

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