Splash Diving. Who says the best dive barely creates a ripple? Boring. Go for the max splash instead! Whooomp! It's tsunami time, as Chris Christie, Andy Reid and other future "Biggest Losers" (but hopefully not Biggest Swimtrunk Losers) do cannonballs, jackknifes and bellyflops. Measured in decibels, wave height, and most number of miniature houses swamped in little coastal town built at the far end of the pool. The slo-mo could be amazing. Big debate: Can contestants use elevators to access platforms? Synchronized? Sure!
Water Ice Chugging. Think Wing Bowl with brain freeze. Viewers get chills as contestants try to gobble gallons of Sour Lemon in, say, five minutes, but the coolest part to see on TV is watching all the groaning and grimacing. Not synchronized.
Post-Apocalyptic Triathlon. In a movie-set landscape devastated by war, alien attack or whatever (creativity op for host city), players have to (1) flip over a car, hotwire it and drive to barricaded secret government lab, (2) dig through rubble, rescue trapped dog, and brew antidote for poisoned water supply, and (3) neutralize a squad of zombies (animatronic) with sharp-shooting to their brains. No ribbon-twirling version.
Arrhythmic Gymnastics. No fair discriminating against the awkward! Whoever can dance the hurky-jerkiest like Elaine on "Seinfeld," stumbling instead of tumbling, tripping instead of flipping, and pratfalling instead pirouetting, gets the gold. Shots of wincing (but proud) parents in stands could be priceless.
Drunken Bar Fighting. A refinement to Olympic boxing by making scoring much easier: Most bottles consumed then broken over other guy's head.
Track and Field With Watermelon. Add interest to every event using heavy fruit that's a joy to see get smashed. Imagine pole vaulting, high jumping and long jumping while carrying a watermelon. Can't smash to win, but eliminations would be wonderfully messy. In version of shot put and hammer throw, the fruit gets hurled, while the javelin and discus throws must pierce it as a target. Most races involving carrying - relays would be a hoot! - except for hurdles, where track is covered with melons and vines.
Guard Dog and Surveillance Camera Evading. Gotta be a real athlete for this one. Gotta hop a fence (perhaps electrified, as above), then evade three rottweilers and two pit bulls, while avoiding surveillance cameras, climb into a second-floor window to snatch $31.50 in petty cash, then race out the front door to the finish line, without setting off any alarms.
Fire-Fighting. Want some real action heroes? Contestants outside flaming buildings climb ladders to rescue CPR doll, resuscitate, then hose everything down till every ember is extinguished.
Unwilling High Diving. King of the Hill over a pool. Guys from 37 nations jam onto crane-hoisted platform positioned over center of the pool. Ready, set, yo, heave, ho! Into the pool they go. Last man standing is undisputed winner. Suggested by colleague Frank Kummer.
Wanna bet these events wouldn't get better ratings?
Got your own ideas? Email Peter Mucha at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sent-in suggestions could get posted next week.