M. Giant's
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Monday, August 23, 2004  

The Dutch Eel

Trash has been watching more of the Olympics than I have. She even has a favorite swimmer, although she can't say who it is. Not because she doesn't know. And not because it's a secret. It's just that she can't say it.

I was puttering around in the kitchen one night last week when a call came from downstairs. It was Trash's voice, saying something along the lines of:

"Peter Vanden Hogan Baden!"

The name did ring a bell, as did the tones of joy and enthusiasm that suffused my wife's voice.

"What?" I called back.

"Peter Vadden Hogan Hagen!"

I suspected I'd last heard that name—or something like it—four years ago, during the Sydney Olympics. I called down, asking Trash to confirm whether that was indeed the case.

"Beater Baden Bogen Hahden!!" came her exuberant cry.

I went downstairs to see for myself, and there in the pool, along with more recognizable (and pronounceable) names like Michael Thorpe and Ian Phelps, was the one and only Pieter van den Hoogenband in all his multisyllabic glory. The Dutch Eel himself.

As far as I know, nobody actually calls him the Dutch Eel, but somebody should start because it's a hell of a lot easier than calling him Pieter van den Hoogenband all the time.

And yet that's exactly what the announcers did. As they called the mighty battle between Phorpe and Thelps, every few seconds there would be some mention of contender Pieter van den Hoogenband—

"Peeden Fodder Booger Baiter!" Trash rejoiced.

I guess Thorpe didn't do too well in that particular race, succumbing to the greater speed of the Phelpedo, but Trash only had eyes—and comments—for the silver medalist, a sprinter from the Netherlands I like to call the Dutch Eel.

"Heeder Fadden Hober Hauber," she said, somewhat disappointed in her champion. "I think you could have done better, Weiner Bagger Boogen Gooden."

"Silver's not so bad," I pointed out.

"That's true," Trash conceded. She raised her voice in unqualified support. "Eeden Ahden Oden Owden!"

I couldn't have said it better myself.

Today's best search phrase: "Mullet alarm clock." It's time to wake up. In more ways than one.

posted by M. Giant 5:55 PM 7 comments


This had me laughing so hard my side hurts. I haven't been following the Olympics this time, but if I were, I'd be doing pretty much the same thing.


By Anonymous Anonymous, at August 23, 2004 at 7:36 PM  

I've been walking around my apartment yelling Van Den Hoogenband all week..I'm glad to see I'm not alone!

By Blogger Maddy, at August 23, 2004 at 9:09 PM  

Hilarious! Trash can come sing the Impromptu Song of the Dutch Eel with my sister and me, which features this timeless exchange (set, of course, to awesome music): Sis: "I'm Peter vander Hoagerbond" (Me: NO! Pieter van den Hoogenband) Sis: "and everyone says my name wrong."

By Anonymous Anonymous, at August 23, 2004 at 9:24 PM  

Eeben Eiben Döben Stûben!


By Anonymous Anonymous, at August 24, 2004 at 8:04 AM  

Pooter Van Den Bagel Buns!

By Blogger La'Jonndra, at August 25, 2004 at 9:45 AM  

So you need a hilarious pub quiz name and you didn't consider Peeden Fodder Booger Baiter? What's WRONG with you?

By Anonymous Anonymous, at August 27, 2004 at 7:56 PM  

Even now, with all the Olympic hoopla safely past, this makes me roar with laughter.

thank you!

By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 15, 2004 at 8:56 PM  

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