There was a time when art was actually part of the Olympic competition. From 1912 until 1952, art competitions (sculpture, painting, music, literature and architecture) were held and medals awarded. Tug of war was a sport at one time as well. Seriously.
As odd as those seem now, it’s likely that in 2072 the fact that synchronized swimming was an Olympic event will cause just as much wonder. It was already dropped once (in Atlanta in 1996), but reinstated four years later in Sydney.
While we wait for its inevitable drop from the program again, we get treated with images such as those that follow. If you’re a fan of nose clips, heavy makeup, awkward outfits and watching people hold their breath underwater, enjoy!
This is the Russian team of Natalia Ishchenko and Svetlana Romashina.They won gold in the duo event in London. A Russian pair has won the gold every year since the sport was reinstated. No word on whether Ringling Brothers clowns reached out with a post-Olympics job offer.
Earlier in the week, the Russians paid tribute to Michael Jackson, doing a routine to the late entertainer's "They Don't Care About Us." At least one member of his family had high praise.
If you think it looks weird above the pool surface, it gets weirder underneath. Above, The team from Australia competes during the synchronized team technical routine on Thursday.
We told you it gets complicated. Above, the team from Great Britain regroups for their next maneuver. Or maybe they were practicing getting into a crowded Tube train.
We told you there would be nose plugs. This French pair apparently decided to work a little "Swan Lake" tribute into their outfits.
Remember being tossed in the air by your parents while swimming in the hotel pool on vacation? Hopefully these Russians get just as big a kick out of it now that they're adults.
We don't have access to Athletes Village, but like to think that somewhere in the dorms right now the teams, such as this one from China, do everything in synch.
Above images by Patrick B. Kraemer/EPA; TMZ; Mark J. Terrill/AP; Adam Pretty/Getty Images; and Michael Sohn/AP
- 2012 Olympics London