Sports Euphemisms / Rebeca Monzo

These days on the television screens, fortunately, they have dedicated one of the few existing channels to broadcast (usually delayed but sometimes live) the competitions from the 2013 World Athletics Championships, which are being held in Moscow.

To enjoy this magnificent spectacle, we must disregard the Cuban narration. What for everyone else is a competition, is for our officials “a battle.” While all the athletes from other countries came to participate with brains, legs, arms, etc., the Cubans came to “fight with heart in hand” (something very difficult and uncomfortable in my view).

The “Cuban warriors” seem disconcerted by the noise in the stadium, which is strange for people who live in a country like ours where there is so much noise at all hours, while athletes from other countries do not seem distracted. This was the case with the pole vaulter Yurisley Silva; that’s why the favorite failed, according to our commentators. The same thing happens with public pressure, which seems to affect only Cubans, and not competitors such as Elena Isimbaeva, who was not only going for the gold, but after already announcing her retirement–reasons to be under more pressure, yet she nevertheless got it.

Finally, what I find most ridiculous is that when a Cuban participant earns a medal, it is rare that it is not dedicated to Fidel, rather than to the athlete’s family. I’ve never seen any athlete from another country dedicate a medal to the leaders in power instead of to their loved ones. Another thing that caught my attention, to conclude my disquisitions, is that when a Cuban wins a bronze medal, it usually shines brighter than gold.

To tell you the truth, as much as I like sports, I have to consciously prepare myself not to get infuriated at the bias, the yelling, and the crassness that usually accompany the commentary of Cuban broadcasters, experts in sports and euphemisms.

Translated by Tomás A.

14 August 2013