The quiz that will make you swifter, higher, stronger   

Updated: August 28, 2008, 10:24 AM ET

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Paid attention to the past two weeks of Michael Phelps -- and other stuff, like the Beijing Games -- that were? Put your powers of observation and recall to the test with our Summer Olympics quiz:

1. Which of the following physical attributes is likely to prevent you from performing for China at the Olympic Games?
(a) Crooked teeth
(b) Baby teeth
(c) Just A

2. Of the 77 applications lodged to hold protests during the Olympics, how many did the Chinese government reportedly approve?
(a) Zero
(b) All of the above

3. The job application process for the 200 Chinese women who led athletes into National Stadium during the Opening Ceremony reportedly included (check all that apply):
(a) Stripping naked for recruiters
(b) Being measured by rulers
(c) Wonderlic test
(d) 40-yard dash
(e) Bench press spotted by John Lott

4. Which of the following aspects of the Opening Ceremony symbolized China's ambition to explore outer space?
(a) Acrobat "astronauts" and "starlight" emerging from a giant globe
(b) Performers reportedly wearing adult diapers


Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

"If you like our flat-front khakis, they're on sale this week!"

5. Identify the image to the right:
(a) Team Lithuania
(b) Team GAP

6. Dismissing criticism that Opening Ceremony performers suffered brutal working conditions, heatstroke and injuries -- including one dancer being paralyzed -- while rehearsing, Chinese director Zhang Yimou said that:
(a) Only North Korea could have done the ceremony better
(b) And maybe Oceania

7. American swimmer Michael Phelps reportedly has size 14:
(a) Feet
(b) Dorsal fins

8. Which of the following is most likely to slow down Phelps?
(a) Leaky goggles
(b) Mouthy Frenchmen
(c) Gravity, friction, wave effects
(d) Airport metal detectors

9. Which of the following is NOT part of Phelps' reported 12,000-calorie-a-day diet?
(a) An entire pizza
(b) Two pounds of pasta
(c) Three fried-egg sandwiches with five-egg omelet chaser
(d) One split-roasted mastodon

10. Which of the following women sent a flirtatious text message intended for Phelps to television personality Billy Bush while Bush was interviewing Phelps' mother?
(a) Lindsay Lohan
(b) Paris Hilton
(c) Britney Spears
(d) Amanda Beard

11. Appearing on ESPN, Cincinnati Bengals receiver Chad Johnson claimed he could:
(a) Beat Phelps right now
(b) Cure cancer right now
(c) Fly home to Krypton right now
(c) Lead the Bengals to a single playoff victory right now, or ever


AP Photo

Most Olympic judging scores shouldn't be met with, "Oh, the humanity!"

12. Identify the image to the right:
(a) The Hindenburg disaster
(b) A successful airship landing, by the standards of Olympic gymnastics women's vault judging
(c) An Olympic BMX semifinal heat

13. According to an Australian newspaper, which of the following items was not listed in a 21-point Olympic memo distributed by the Chinese government's propaganda unit?
(a) In regard to the three protest parks, no interviews and coverage are allowed
(b) All food safety issues, such as cancer-causing mineral water, are off-limits
(c) On international matters ... no fuss about the Darfur question
(d) 14 = 16

14. According to the International Olympic Committee:
(a) There is no question all Chinese gymnasts are at least 16 years old
(b) Yellowcake. In Africa
(c) We have always been at war with Eurasia
(d) You will take them to Jabba now, because you serve your master well and will be rewarded

15. In an interview with CNBC's Darren Rovell, American gymnast Nastia Liukin said she drew inspiration from:
(a) Seeing her picture on a Visa ATM
(b) Drinking soda from collectible Coca-Cola can No. 4
(c) The tailwind generated by a General Electric wind farm
(d) Michael Jordan's principled covering of the Reebok logo with an American flag in 1992

16. During the final 20 meters of his world-record run in the Olympic 100-meter race, Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt:
(a) Slowed down
(b) Glanced around with arms outstretched
(c) Beat his chest
(d) Produced a Higgs boson

17. Speaking to reporters, IOC president Jacques Rogge criticized:
(a) The Chinese government, for reportedly sentencing two protest-permit-filing septuagenarian women to a labor re-education camp
(b) The IOC, for reportedly cutting a secret deal allowing Chinese Internet censorship of foreign journalists
(c) The Chinese government, for revoking the visa of former Olympian and Team Darfur activist Joey Cheek
(d) The IOC, for saying nothing about Cheek
(e) Bolt, for being happy

18. Asked by The Associated Press to comment on Bolt, former Olympic champion Carl Lewis declined because:
(a) Lewis has a Nike contract, and Bolt is a "Puma guy"
(b) Nike bought Medicare?

Misty May Treanor, George W. Bush, Kerri Walsh

Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images)

"Please, please, please tell me Laura is still at the concession stand!"

19. Identify the image to the right:
(a) President Bush at Olympic beach volleyball practice
(b) Why the 22nd Amendment makes Bill Clinton sad

20. Australian Olympic Committee president John Coates said Great Britain's unexpectedly strong swimming performances were good for a nation that has:
(a) Very few swimming pools
(b) Not much soap
(c) A vegemite surplus and a national boxing squad made up of punchy kangaroos
(d) A and B only

21. Swedish wrestler Ara Abrahamian was stripped of his bronze medal after:
(a) Dropping it on the mat during the Greco-Roman medal ceremony to protest the judging in a controversial loss
(b) Confusing Olympic wrestling with boxing

22. In order to attract more viewers, the International Table Tennis Federation reportedly is encouraging:
(a) Female players to wear skirts and shirts with "more curves"
(b) The IOC to sanction beach table tennis
(c) Paraguayan javelin thrower Leryn Franco to take up the sport, no questions asked

23. According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Chinese basketball fans:
(a) Have nicknamed American basketball player Carlos Boozer "Fan Gu Zai," which loosely translates to "Betrayal Skull Dude"
(b) Are pretty much awesome

24. Which of the following Olympians were suspended for doping?
(a) Ukrainian heptathlete Lyudmila Blonska
(b) Greek hurdler Fani Halkia
(c) Four horses from the equestrian team jumping event
(d) All of the above. Really!


25. Alain Bernard : We will smash the Americans
(a) Anyone from France : any prediction of smashing anyone else in anything, post-Napoleon
(b) All of the above

26. Olympic Opening Ceremony : fireworks footprints
(a) "Happy Days" : the episode with Weezer
(b) "Jurassic Park" : actual velociraptors
(c) All of the above


27. After winning a balance beam gold medal, American gymnast Shawn Johnson received a congratulatory text message from:
(a) Former Olympian-turned-"Dancing With the Stars" champion Apolo Anton Ohno
(b) The Ghost of Christmas Future

28. Which of the following Olympic sports is made up?
(a) Laser radial sailing
(b) Madison track cycling
(c) Equestrian team dressage
(d) None of the above. Really!

29. In the wake of the United States' disappointing Olympic sprint performance, USA Track and Field officials vowed to:
(a) Conduct a comprehensive review of all its programs
(b) Purchase stickum

Angel Valodia Matos


Angel Valodia Matos of Cuba didn't exactly show the proper Olympic spirit after being disqualified from his bronze-medal match.

30. Identify the image to the right:
(a) Pre-Olympic taekwondo match foot inspection
(b) None of the above

31. A Spanish synchronized swimming team was disqualified for:
(a) Using steroids
(b) Throwing its bronze medals to the bottom of the pool to protest judges' scoring
(c) Fussing about the Darfur question
(d) Wearing waterproof lights

32. In a private ceremony held at Gillette Stadium, New England Patriots executives reportedly presented players with:
(a) Rings reading "16-0 PERFECT SEASON"
(b) Silver medals

ESSAY QUESTION: According to reports, two-thirds of the 100,000 condoms made available to competitors at the Beijing Games were unused -- a stark contrast to the Sydney Games in 2000, when organizers ran out of prophylactics. In 800 words or less, determine whether Travis Henry should be named United States flag bearer for the 2012 London Games.

ANSWER KEY: 1, c, and what, are convincing teeth beyond the reach of current CGI technology?; 2, b, and shocker; 3, a-b; 4-6, a, and way to make a compelling case, Mr. Zhang!; 7, a; 8, d; 9, d, we think; 10, a, and that would have been a lot more exciting three years ago; 11, a, and it's only a matter of time before he says the other stuff; 12, a, though b and c are acceptable; 13, d; 14-15, a; 16, a-c; 17, e, how courageous; 18-19, a; 20, d, and in all honestly, we'd like to see a little more Olympic smack talk; 21, a; 22, a, and good luck with that!; 23, a or b, and Boozer should totally get the equivalent Chinese character tattoo; 24, d; 25, b; 26, c; 27, a; 28, d; 29, b, and also, it might help to practice handoffs more than once every four years; 30, b; 31, d, and talk about the Olympic spirit; 32, a, and snicker; Essay question: Any variation on "Damn -- 33,000 used condoms still sounds like a lot more fun than watching Bob Costas refuse to eat scorpion on a stick" is acceptable.

Patrick Hruby is a columnist for Page 2. Sound off to Patrick here.



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