I am not an athlete, and I actually find watching sports to be on the dull side; except of course for football (soccer). Tell me it's an international competition, though, and I'm all over it.
Swimming, fencing, diving, weight lifting, gymnastics, cycling ... I don't really care for these sports on their own, but the Olympics make them my one and only concern from the moment the Olympic torch is lit, to the closing ceremony.
I love whatever brings people from every corner of the world together in the spirit of industrious competition. What's more beautiful than people with differing languages, beliefs and cultures getting together and speaking one language; the language of football, gymnastics or cycling, to name a few?
I'm not only glued to the TV watching sports I don't understand the rules for, but I have gone so far as watching the Korean and Chinese language channels broadcasting the Games. It's cool, because when a sport gets too boring on NBC, I switch to the Korean or Chinese channel to find something more interesting, even though I have no idea what the commentators are saying.
For instance, I watched fencing with Korean commentary, and the only thing I understood was observing which player got poked, and seeing the score go up. I was pretty much in the dark with regards to any other thing involving fencing-- if there is anything else-- but I still got an adrenaline rush from the energy that traveled all the way from Beijing into my living room.