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Elmo the Athlete


Finnish Broadcasting Company sorts commentators Immo and Lyly are in the studio making a programme about the greatest athlete of all time, Elmo the Finn. After singing his praises they run the tape of the Andes winter games. The commentaries are a hundred per cent parody and satire on the complacent style used by sports commentators, derogatory about other nations and exaggerating the skill of their own country’s athletes. The author uses and twists all the clichés quite mercilessly. The fact that at the moment of victory Elmo never wants the same old national anthem played but to hear whatever classical piece happens to take his fancy at the moment adds its own piquancy. The commentators recall the Derwanga summer games. Elmo wins the 100 metres, though he stumbles halfway. The eternal second to his first, Endre Kiss of Hungary, wins the silver. Elmo’s mother is also in the studio, and tells how Elmo always wanted to climb as high as he could as a boy, and was always up in trees. Elmo’s wife Aliina is also in the studio and she describes how they got married in Hungary, where Endre Kiss got the idea of the match into his head and acted as best man. Aliina recalls nostalgically how their son, Little Elmo, was conceived and his mother suggests that there has been a great deal of grief is Elmo’s life. Elmo never returned to Finland. In the studio his mother and wife refuse to say anything as Immo and Lyly reel off some of the rumours flying around about Elmo.



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