The Olympics, Heroism, and Fun: Old Games Renewed

Major Fun has been in e-touch with someone named Amye who is actually going to be one of the Olympic torch carriers. She will be participating in the relay on Saturday, April 27 (Day 1 of the start of the Torch Relay in the Los Angeles area). She wants to know how to make her run more fun.

An interesting challenge, no? Especially when you think of the dignity of the Olympics, the fanfare, the marches, the displays of agonizing heroism. Especially when you discover that the person who is asking to make her run more fun has severe arthritis.

She writes:

Upper Half of Amye: I'm always in some kind of pain in my fingers, elbows and occasionally shoulders. Its a throbbing, inflamed, gnawing kind of pain. But that doesn't stop me from opening doors, driving, keyboarding, writing. Its just that I am not able to do any of these activities for more than 10-20 minutes at a time. I have to break it up with a different posture, position, or just complete physical rest.

Oh yes, I've had joint replacements to fingers, knuckles, both elbows, and both shoulders. Consequence: reduced pain but absolutely no strength and limited range of motion (i.e., its a real and unnatural effort to scratch the top of my head).

Lower Half of Amye: With joints replace in both knees and reconstructed toes in both feet, I can walk fairly well now (beats the wheelchair of several years back! Ha!). But distance and uneven terrain play havoc on my ankles which always swell immediately, causing major pain and limping in walking. I experience spasms in my calves and quads regularly and despite that, I try to walk and do stairs daily. But then there are days when I cannot walk at all

(I've given up on trying to be rational about the arthritis flares!).

I'm moving more toward the concept of starting out the relay walking and carrying the torch, then relying on a motorized scooter with a torch holder for the last part of the relay. Sound boring and uneventful, so Major FUN, . . hhhhhh-eeeee-lllll-ppppp!

Subj: Re: Old Games Renewed

Date: 96-03-13 14:29:50 EST

From: MP22(at)

To: Major Fun

Hello Major FUN,

So here's what I'm thinking:

There will be thousands (hundreds?) of torch-carriers wending their way across country, all to bring the flame of Good Games to Atlanta.

Amy is part of that process. Maybe she should be the part where instead of a person carrying the torch, the torch carries the person?

Carrying a torch for an old flame. Haven't women been there, done that?

So back to Amye. . .maybe more is not better. Maybe it's one small step for Amye, one big leap forward in the process of getting the Torch to Atlanta. There are Guiness Records for the most number of steps taken, but what about for the least? Wouldn't just taking One Small Step mean something Bigger Than That?

I hate to think of Amye in all that agony, struggling to do more than she can comfortably do. No pain, no gain, is no way to run some a monumental event. So riding along in her motorized cart is cool, or being pulled along by a Force greater than herself (a Land Rover?) also makes a statement.

When all is said and done, maybe Amye ought to just punch a few keys and launch the Torch onto the Internet, so a digitized version of it can also be passed along, from hand to hand, from keystroke to keystroke, from website to website, keep Amye's Torch moving, so it too will land in Atlanta at the same time the real torch does.

That's all. Thanks for asking. Off to have more fun now. . .