On the Day of the Men's Olympic Gold Medal Game 2008

Richard Hunkler, PhD.
Water Polo Planet


‘Twas the day of the Olympic gold medal game, when all around the pool
Not a creature was stirring, not even JW Cool;

The wet suits were hung in the lockers with care,
In hopes that the game soon would be there;

The young players were nestled all snug in their Chucky T reds,
While visions of gold medals danced in their heads;

And fans in the stands, and young players in their caps,
Had just settle down for some long warm-up laps,

When out in the stands there arose such a loud clatter,
The young players sprang from the pool to see what was the matter.

Away to the stands they flew like a flash,
To see some players wrapped in a Serbia sash.

To play USA in the next round in an early game Serbia was a no show
We gave them a whupping that made our fans, coaches, and players glow,

When what to wondering eyes should appear,
But three US Coaches, and eight veteran players in the rear,

With a tall, blond Head Coach, so determine and scary,
Young players knew in a moment it must be St. Terry.

More rapid than eagles all his players came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;

“Now, Varellas! Now Hudnut! Now, Powers! Now Wright! Now, Beaubien!  Now, Merlo!
On, Bailey! On, Smith! On, Hutton! On, Krumpholz! On, Brooks! On, Moses! On, Azevedo! 

To the end of the pool! To the benches by the wall!
Move away! Move away! Move away all!”

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,

So up to the benches the players they flew,
With their head full of game plans, and St. Terry too.

And then, in a twinkling, the starting whistle blew,
Their mental and physical practice told them what to do.

Players were trying their best to turn the game around,
Thus, St. Terry’s 6 on 5 timeout came with a welcomed sound.

He was dressed all in USA apparel that you can bet,
And his clothes from hard work and splashes were all wet;

A bundle of plays he had on his clipboard back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.

His eyes – how they twinkled! His dimples so merry!
However his heated words were much to the contrary!

His whimsical mouth was drawn up like a strong bow,
And his sun bleached hair on his head was as white as snow;

The cap of a magic marker he held tight in his teeth,
And the explanations he gave encircled their heads like a wreath;

He had a broad face and hard as a rock was his belly,
That did not shake, because no one thinks he ever ate in a deli.

He was tall and strong, a right smart looking Olympic statue model,
And no one laughed when they saw him because they would have to do a lap of duck waddle;

A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave the team to know they had nothing to dread;

He spoke few words, but reminded them all of the importance of this game,
And he said play your best for your team and your country and I will be the only one to blame,

And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, he sat down on the bench from which he rose;

There was no magic bullet and they lost, to his team he gave applause and a whistle,
And to the critics who said we should have won the gold medal I say go sit on a thistle.

But what we should exclaim, ere the two National teams went out of sight,
“Two Olympic Silver medals is a HAPPY CHRISTMAS to all, and to all a good-night.”