OK Brazil

The Rio Olympics are now in full swing after a magnificent opening ceremony and an incident-free weekend. For all the dire predictions about Zika, terrorism and poor water quality, it appears so far as though the games themselves may yet be a relative success.

Oklahoma has many ties to the 2016 games, with several local athletes and university affiliates representing their countries in Brazil. Oklahoma City residents Robin Prendes and Anthony Fahden will be rowing for the United States, while new Thunder acquisition Damontas Sabonis balls for his home country Lithuania. OU’s seven-time NCAA champion men’s gymnastics coach, Mark Williams, will be leading a squad that includes some of his own proteges like former Sooner Jake Dalton.

While Thunder loyalist Russell Westbrook decided to sit out the games, his new nemesis Kevin Durant will headline the American basketball team. That may be for the best, as it’s hard to imagine the two men sharing a jersey just weeks after Durant bolted for the Bay.

The Tulsa World has compiled a full list of Oklahomans at the Olympics. Their Sooner State ties give Oklahoma residents yet another reason to tune in to the world’s biggest sporting event.

Things we saw (and heard)

Trump leads in state, poll finds, but neither candidate is popular — The Oklahoman

It takes 4 times longer to become a hair braider than an EMT in Oklahoma  — The Daily Signal

Overworked and underfunded, Mo. public defender office assigns case to the governor — NPR

The despair of poor white Americans — The Atlantic

Oklahoma ends marriage initiative as part of budget cuts — Oklahoma Watch

The Choctaw v climate change: ‘The Earth is speaking’ — Al Jazeera

Brazil’s Billionaire Problem — New Republic

Rio Olympics athletes advised not to put their heads underwater — The Verge

How Mark Williams took his recipe for success at OU to the Olympics — The Oklahoman

Ralph Lauren’s ties to the U.S. Olympic team must be severed — Slate

The Kevin Durant-Russell Westbrook war is upon us — The Ringer

Quotes to note

“Foreign athletes will literally be swimming in human crap.”

— Brazilian pediatrician Dr. Daniel Becker on the poor water quality in Rio’s Guanabara Bay, 7/26/16

“his message is being a loud-mouthed dick, basically, and going out there and offending people.”

— Republican political consultant Liz Mair on Donald Trump during a live CNN interview, 8/4/16

“in view of the city’s commitment to public health, safety and basic common sense, we will not issue permits for block party dumpster pools.”

— Communications director for the Philadelphia Department of Licenses and Inspections, Karen Guss, on why residents should stop using dumpsters for pool parties, 8/4/16

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