copied over from Relevant Magazine

The Best Olympic Moment

Last Tuesday evening U.S. freestyle skiing finals contestant Evan Dybvig took a nasty spill coming off his second jump. He skidded around, sliding over moguls, grimacing madly and eventually toppled over clutching his right knee. He got up, his mouth wide with pain, and proceeded to ski down the rest of the run. He collapsed at the finish, visibly shaken, audibly moaning and pale as a Utah snowfall. He suffered major ligament and cartilage damage that he�ll need surgery to repair.

Later, an NBC reporter found him sitting peacefully on the sidelines with his massacred knee wrapped. She asked if he was disappointed with the fall and injury. Not really, Dybvig said. �I wasn�t planning using it much after this anyway. It�s time to retire.� Turns out he�s got a wife and 5-month-old son. So Evan said on national TV, �I�m just going to enjoy the rest of the competition and then go home and focus on my family.�

At the U.S. Olympic trials in 1994, Nancy Kerrigan got clubbed and we all remember her wincing at the camera and crying, �Why me? Why meeeeee?� The Canadians got screwed in the finals of the pairs figure skating, and we keep seeing Jamie Sale weeping. Skate Canada is protesting. People are decrying all of figure skating. But not Evan Dybvig. His Olympic dream was shattered along with his knee, but he�s okay. He knows what really matters to him.

There�s a lot of spectacle in the Olympics. Metaphoric opening ceremonies, dramatically-intoned vignettes, and continuous replays of heartache and broken kneecaps and corrupt judges. You get failure and redemption. Scandal and celebration. And you get guys like Dybvig. He crashed, but then he went on with life. He focused on the important things.