Friday, February 19, 2010

Critisism of Olympic Proportions

The Winter Olympics are now at the half way point and not without controversy. The games are being held in Vancouver, Canada, not my home town, but a nice part of the country.

Everyone prior to the event expected one of the best Olympics ever. I mean Canada: modern, progressive, efficient, and friendly. Unfortunately these Olympics will be mired in controversy due to poor judgment and a lot of bad luck!

The games started with a dark cloud over them when the day before the opening, a young Georgian hopeful crashed his luge in a practice run. He left the side of the luge run hitting a metal girder and died later in hospital.

Experts had been warning about this part of the track in advance citing its dangers. What is more startling is that when you look at the pictures, there is no webbing or fencing to prevent competitors that leave the track hitting any of the steel girders beside the track.

I mean really, does it take an expert or a death to point these most obvious dangers out before they are remedied? If it had of been a death on a Vancouver building site, it would have been shut down until the accident had been fully investigated! The organisers have continued with the use of the track relatively unmodified; let us hope there are no further fatalities.

Unfortunately, this was only the start.

Though weather is a force of nature, the incompetence of holding the snow park events at Cypress Mountain, 1000m, in West Vancouver has to be one of the monumental errors in judgment in Winter Olympic history. I mean really, it rains in Vancouver during the winter and the resulting mess and chaos to both participants and spectators is just unnecessary.

And then there is Petra Madjic who fell on a cross country ski run, off the side of the run down into what looked like a crevasse. Has no heard of fences or barriers to prevent this sort of thing from happening? After clawing her way out, she went on to win a Bronze medal in the final, with four broken ribs from the fall. What a star! Her Olympics and season are now over.

A wall at an Olympic concert crashed injuring onlookers, the buses keep breaking down or not showing, the weather even at Whistler is ‘uncharacteristically warm’ so the snow conditions are not great, the ice on the speed skating track is some of the worst ever experienced and even Joe Biden got into the action by crashing his car.

The opening ceremony was unfortunate in that one of the 4 mechanical pillars of ice that came protruding out of the ground for the lighting of the flame failed to surface. Thank goodness no one was paying too much attention to Bryan Adams failing to lip sync the opening song and looking surprised to hear himself singing to thousands of people.

Nothing is going to run perfectly to plan at any Olympics, and often events like this are easy targets for criticism, but in this case, my fellow countrymen should take note. The world will always view the Vancouver games as tarnished. Bad luck is understandable, incompetence unacceptable.



nursemyra said...

It takes real guts to carry on with four broken ribs

Michele said...

I had heard there were erection problems during the opening ceremonies but I didn't realize they actually occurred IN the ceremonies.

The luge accident was so horrible; my heart really goes out to that poor man's family.

Petra Medjic is magnificent! And quite charming, judging from her post-medal interview. Makes me want to visit Slovenia.

daisyfae said...

Petra Madjic is a real life Xena... my hero.

jinjir minjir said...

At least you haven't gone bankrupt...

Anonymous said...

The folly of trying to host a winter Olympics in and around a place like Vancouver is indescribable. Only the lure of money could blind one's ability to reason.

I lived in Calgary during the '88 winter Olympics and those were fraught with weather related issues, even though Calgary is more of a "winter city" than Vancouver could ever hope to be.

Mechanical failures abound? Remember the summer games in Montreal in '76? That was a clusterfuck too.

This whole idea of modern Olympic "games" should just be taken out behind the barn, shot and put to rest once and for all. In my humble opinion, of course.

DianeCA said...

Well it is now the 21st of February and I can assure you most Norwegians are quite happy with the Olympics hehehe. Renny hasn't commented negatively once. Of course I thought too, hmmm Rain in Vancouver....who would have thought. Darn what bad luck...LOL

Zhu said...

I don't feel "close" to the Olymics because even though I'm in Canada, they are held 5,000 km from us. B.C has a different culture, different weather etc. So to me, it barely feels like it's still the same country!

One thing I noticed though, is that there seems to be a lot of "incidents" during these games, including the tragic death of the luge athlete as you mention.

Uncle Keith said...

I think all women's sports should go back to the original form of dress for the Olympics. Men's sports should stay the same; I don't want to see Shaun White's furry-red yambag swinging through the air during the men's halfpipe.

beaverboosh said...

nm - truly outstanding

michele - required olympic viagra... Petra is a star

df - your into amazonians aren't you

jm - ... yet...

rob - it is just unfortanate when the true competition is obscured by administrative incompetence...

dianeca - renny doesn't bitch... that's my job

zhu - understandable. we feel closer here, it has been snowing for 2 weeks

uk - totally... esp the luge... bet you'd get a few whistlers