Thursday, August 9, 2012

The Five Rings to Rule Them All

            You know what the world loves? Friendly competition. It explains a lot about the prevalence of our wars, at least. For finding out which country America is better than, wars have done a pretty good job. The more fiscally responsible option is to use the Olympics. What? There’s one going on right now? Well then this article is perfectly timed! What a crazy coincidence.
            But sometimes the Olympics can be a little unfair. When you’re from a country that’s smaller than Central Park, it’s not too easy to find a lot of world-class athletes, and you can’t exactly recruit citizenship. There’s no country that is the Stanford of Olympics, I mean to say. So in the spirit of fairness, I think the decent thing to do is to weigh each country based on its population. Think Honors Olympics being worth more for your country's GPA than Remedial Sport.
            Unfortunately, I couldn’t figure out a good enough way to do that. So instead, I decided to just find the medal count per capita, that is to say, which country has the most medals per citizen. Unfortunately again, I’m just one man who started before the Olympics are even over, so I only did the top 20 countries in the medal counts. All the stats and math were done by Google, so I’ll share my Nobel Prize with them. In addition to the stats, I’ll list a line or two about each country to keep this blog from turning to the spreadsheet channel.

Medal Standings on a Per-Capita Basis

1. Jamaica- 1.12x10-6 (.00000112) gold medals per person, 3.32x10-6 total medals (1st). Jamaica starts off by dominating. With only 2,709,300 people living inside the country, Usain Bolt is single-handedly carrying them to the top of the per-capita ranking.

2. Hungary- 8.62x10-7 gold medals/person, 1.56x10-6 total medals (3rd). In a surprise move, Hungary must be pretty starving for some gold medals in order for their small populace to put up this many great athletes. Note to self- look up synonyms for starving that might fit better.

3. New Zealand- 6.81x10-7 golds per, 2.27x10-6 total medals (2nd). In a country that has more sheep than people, it’s astonishing that New Zealand has managed to fleece the Olympic games like they have! I promise they won’t all include puns from now on.
Together, they are worth .000001362 gold medals.
4. Great Britain- 3.83x10-7 golds per, 8.14x10-7 total (7th). The hosting country loses a couple points for including Scotland, England, and Wales all together, increasing their population size without many more good athletes. Lookin’ at you, Wales.

5. Kazakhstan- 3.62x10-7 golds per, 5.43x10-7 total (9th). Kazakhstani citizens are as hard, individually, to beat as their country is to spell! *Borat reference*

 6. Belarus- 3.16x10-7 golds per, 1.05x10-6 total (5th). Where is Belarus, most people ask? Well in addition to being a landlocked country (whose major exports include mustaches and questionable democratic elections) bordered by Russia, Ukraine, and Poland, it’s right here, at the sixth most gold medals per person!

7. The Netherlands- 2.99x10-7 golds per, 9.58x10-7 total (6th). One of the few countries whose title reads more like a band name, the Dutch citizens have quite a large piece of each gold medal! Side rant- Why did we start calling Holland “The Netherlands”? When did we say “Okay, yeah, we’ll switch over, you crazy Dutch, what with your wooden shoes and split-up restaurant bills!”Also, WHY THE HELL ARE THEY DUTCH!? Why not Neders? Or Nerds?

8. Cuba- 2.67x10-7 golds per person, 7.11x10-7 total (8th). I guess all of those cigars didn’t harm their lungs too much, because the citizens of Cuba have the 8th largest portion of each medal in the world!

9. Australia- 2.65x10-7 golds per, 1.28x10-6 total medals (4th). I suppose the Australians are so in shape from clinging onto the bottom of the Earth all the time that they are all gifted, athletically, for the Olympics.

10. South Korea- 2.45x10-7 golds per, 5.12x10-7 total (10th). First they have the world’s fastest internet, and now they have the 10th largest piece of each medal per person! Once Starcraft becomes an Olympic sport, prepare to see this Korea rocket through the ratings.

More Countries! More probably racist things to say! I love it!