The 2012 Summer Olympics feature 10,500 athletes from 204 nations competing in 302 events in 26 sports. With that kind of diversity, you’re bound to come across some really interesting characters. But today we’re not looking at Olympic athletes with fascinating personal lives, hobbies, or appearances. We’ve done that already. Today we’re looking at Olympians with hilarious names. And really, with all the languages and cultures involved in the Summer Games, finding such people is like shooting fish in a barrel.
Now, some people might say that making fun of people’s names is a shallow and vain ethnocentric exercise. And to that I have two replies: first, I don’t think we’re making fun of these people. They’re amazing athletes regardless of their names; we’re just pointing out the obvious. Second, lighten up. I certainly hope our friends over in Asia and Africa make fun of the Western names that sound funny to them, because everybody needs a good laugh now and then. (Who knows, maybe something innocuous like “Bill Jones” sounds like “donkey poop” in Ethiopian.) And besides, there are some funny Western names on the list too; we’re not trying to discriminate.
Point is: this is all in good fun. So sit back, enjoy these Olympic names, and be glad they don’t belong to you. (Unless they do. In which case, I’m sorry.)