avoiding olympics spoilers in the twitter era

We are only one week in to the London Olympics and records are being broken all over the place. Some have risen to incredible victories as others face crushing defeats. From a 15-year-old girl winning the 800m by practically a full body, Michael Phelps becoming the most decorated Olympian ever and arguably the best athlete of all time, to the heart-breaking reality that Ryan Lochte just may be dumb as rocks, but is sexy as hell. (Don’t believe me? Click here and here.)

(AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

It’s also been another year of people whining about spoiler alerts. Spoiler alerts on Twitter, on Facebook, on television.

Well, I’m here to make all your dreams come true. Here are some fool-proof ways to make sure you avoid all Olympics Spoilers.

1. Make a TV schedule. Go to NBC’s complete on-air schedule  using a pen and paper or an excel spreadsheet create a list of all the Olympics events that you want to see, what channels they will be on, what dates they will air and what times they will air.

2. Turn off your television, except when your schedule permits it. Except for your approved programming (see 1. ) keep the television off. Spoilers are everywhere. Those newscasters will tell you a spoiler alert is coming, but by God if you don’t press that mute button fast enough or change the channel or leave the room – you’ll see something you wish you hadn’t. Plus – how do you know when to go back to the show! It’s not like you can watch it because they’re going to show those pretty pictures of athletes with medals or crushed and crying. Do not turn on any other channels. Go straight for the one you intend to watch, and only turn the television on when your approved programming has begun.

3. Do not check your email during the Olympics. If you signed up for news emails (such as The New York Times) there is no doubt those sneaky bastards will give you updates before the events airs.

4. Do not go on Twitter. Ever. At all. For any reason. During the Olympics. Twitter is infested with the spoilers. Strangers are out to ruin your entire Olympic experience by tweeting about how happy they are Michael Phelps just won, and they were watching it live from London while you sit in your office waiting for the end of the day like a child waits for the recess bell. NO TWITTER.

5. Do not go on Facebook. The same reasoning as Twitter follows. People will spoil it for you and post pictures of athletes with their gold medals because just like the news, they want to say they knew first and they told you first. Got it? No Twitter. No Facebook.

6. Do not go out in public. Public places have televisions. You do not have control over these televisions so you cannot change the channel when the anchors cry, “Spoiler alert!” They also have people. People like to talk – whether or not you want to listen. No going out to eat. No going to the gym – unless your gyms has no televisions. If it has televisions, it’s time you took up running outside.

7. Learn to dodge and maneuver work conversations, events. I realize you will have to endure the public eye in order to go to work. Either speak to no one or talk so much about other subjects that have nothing to do with the Olympics that people will just walk away from you. You could also make it very clear to everyone by writing a sign on your door that says ‘Don’t talk to me about the Olympics or I will kill you’ in a less harmful, HR-summoning way.

8. No radio. That’s what iPods are for anyways. No radio.

9. Wear headphones in public. If you are constantly listening to music there is a better change you will not hear any conversation around you about the Olympics that could contain spoilers. I suggest Bose headphones – the sound-blocking ones. You could avoid this problems entirely by simply never leaving your house.

10. Turn off your cell phone. Someone WILL text you and ruin your entire day. Trust no one.

11. Go online only between the hours of 12a.m. and 2 a.m. for East Coasters. West coasters can never go online during the Olympics.  Every blogger and their mom will be commenting and posting about the Olympics. There’s little chance that anywhere on the web is free from spoilers. If you go online during these approved hours the only news available will be what happened in the days before because the Olympians haven’t woken up yet. Unless you’re on the West Coast. Then you’re screwed.

So, I think that covers it – but if you think of more, let me know.

To wrap it up for you: Make a television schedule of the Olympics events you want to watch and turn the television on only to that channel when it airs in your time zone. Do not go online, check your email, Facebook or Tweet. Do not listen to the radio. Do not go to public places, when you are in public (i.e. on the subway/t/metro) listen to your music on loud using noise-reducing headphones. Avoid contact and conversation with people.

Good luck!! May the best spoiler-avoider be the last to know!


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