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  • Stop calling it Track and Field

    I think the time has come for North Americans to start calling our sport Athletics, and for our magazine to follow suit.

    We have shown that we can be flexible: it now comes naturally to us to call the broad jump and hop,step,and jump by their proper names; hardly anybody calls it the 100-meter dash anymore.

    The British and French changed many decades ago, so let's follow suit!

  • #2
    I almost always call it athletics but that's because I deal with so many Europeans in working with our Olympic database. Our 3-letter abbreviation for the sport on our database is ATH. In the US I tend to say track & field athletics and combine them, because I know many of my e-mails will get to European sources.

    Lots of Olympic sports to talk about stuff like this - football instead of soccer, hockey instead of field hockey, handball instead of team handball.

    But one place I draw the line is when my Euro buddies try to talk about basketball matches and baseball matches. I tell them, look, its basketball games and baseball games. I agree we should follow you on football/soccer, etc., but we invented basketball and baseball (sorta), and we play them better than any nation (save Cuba in baseball but see below), so in those sports you should listen to us - and Cuba also calls them baseball games (in Spanish)

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    • #3
      Good idea, that way, the 3% of the general population who once in a while see fit to pay attention will give up completely.

      Get back with me when the rest of the world corrects their confusion in calling soccer, football.

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      • #4
        I thought it was Remembrance Day, not April Fool's.

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        • #5
          Track and field is descriptive -- you know exactly what sport is being talked about. Athletics is a term that is not particular to our sport and the phrases "that person is athletic" and "that person has an athletic body" do not lead one to think of a track and field athlete per se. I personally think that the English/European usage is flawed and I do not like it that much.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by noone View Post
            The British and French changed many decades ago, so let's follow suit!
            Did you not just give THE best reason NOT to do it??

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            • #7
              Oh the confusion this would create. College and high school athletic directors would have to change their job and department titles (I know, "athletic" isn't "athletics," but it's close enough) and everybody would be wondering why Oakland's baseball team isn't wearing track spikes. Or athletics spikes.

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              • #8
                Hey, I've got a swell idea... let's call our country's sanctioning body for our sport:

                The Athletics Congress

                ( Oops, that's been tried ( and failed ) already ! )

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                • #9
                  The sport we revere is Track and Field (or Field and Track if you prefer) Athletics encompasses any physical sporting contest.

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                  • #10
                    If you call it "Athletics" I see it as assuming you are not an "athlete" unless you participate in this sport (of Track and Field).

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                    • #11
                      Say what: flexible.

                      You mean like when Britain joins the EU but is the only nation to retain its currency?

                      Is that the example you had in mind?
                      Last edited by Mr. Bowie; 11-12-2015, 05:02 AM. Reason: spelling

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Dave View Post
                        Get back with me when the rest of the world corrects their confusion in calling soccer, football.
                        Right. Because what's the sense in calling it football when they use an actual ball and primarily control it with their feet?
                        Regards,
                        toyracer

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                        • #13
                          just to be precise note that your hosts never call it "track and field"; we call it "track & field" :-)

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Mr. Bowie View Post
                            Say what: flexible.

                            You mean like when Britain joins the EU but is the only nation to retain its currency?
                            There are currently 9 EU members who do not use the euro.
                            Było smaszno, a jaszmije smukwijne...

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Mr. Bowie View Post
                              Say what: flexible.

                              You mean like when Britain joins the EU but is the only nation to retain its currency?

                              Is that the example you had in mind?
                              UK are not the only member of the EU who don't use the Euro

                              Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Sweden have retained their own currency.
                              i deserve extra credit

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