When your child is from New York at the Olympics, you will find a way to watch


Where did you watch the first game? The first game was at 4:30 in the morning. My wife and I woke up to watch; don’t wake up so early on a work day if you don’t have a bit of skin in the game. I got dressed the night before because I knew it was going to be so early. Our dog woke up around 5, so I was doing dog duties at half time. I let him go, gave him food, took him for a walk and brought him back to watch with us. He was still a little indignant.

How about next? The second game started at 7:30, which was more reasonable. It was also the opening day of the championship qualifiers at my golf club. My friend told me to just record it and get it out of my mind and look back later. I’m like, “Man, do you think I can ignore my daughter’s game?” So I ended up going to the club early and watching at the restaurant. People probably asked, “Who’s that crazy nut sitting there?”

When did you know that crystal is Olympic material? My daughter was born in Queens, but when we were little we moved to Rockville Center. We don’t know that it is a big football city, so she played. When Crystal was 8, one of the parent coaches said, “When he goes to the Olympics, get me tickets.”

What do you do before the game? I always talk to Crystal and tell her she enjoys the experience. We’ll talk later. If it’s hard for her, like the first one at the Olympics, I say it’s just one match, and it will be the next. If she’s okay, I say nice things about the team and tell her to get some sleep.

Where did you watch the first race? The first race was 11:30 pm our time, so Charlotte’s dad and I watched at home. It was a little late for bed so I first got some sleep and looked in my pajamas.

How did it feel to be with her? I wasn’t sorry I wasn’t in Tokyo until the opening day and I saw all the empty stands. It was just a reminder of all the traumas we went through last year. As a health worker – I now work in Montefiore in the Bronx – I saw it first hand.

Where will you watch future races? I’m a member of the rowing club where Charlotte also rowed and trained, so we’ll have a guard party on the day of the finals. We made T-shirts with the words “Tokyo Olympics” on the front and “Buck” on the back.

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