Media feeding frenzy in Vancouver...the headlines will not be fun to watch.
But today was the first time I’ve seen the international media go into a shark-like feeding frenzy at an Olympic Games. And it wasn’t pretty.
There’s still time to recover, but I don’t know if VANOC will ever get over the stigma of cancelled tickets (20,000 more just today), lousy weather, hydraulic arms that don’t lift up during an Opening Ceremony, buses that can’t get up a hill that’s been there a million years and shouldn’t take anyone by surprise and ice-cleaning machines that break down in a country that should have more experience with the damned things than anybody else. Not to mention, of course, the death of that poor Georgian luger. I can't still can't get that video image out of my mind. Horrible.
I’m sorry, but it has become an embarrassment. Organizers can’t help that the weather suddenly turned warm. But global warming is hardly a new sensation, and
The latest media hype came today after VANOC announced it has had to cancel 20,000 more standing room only tickets for upcoming events at
They’d already cancelled 8,000 standing room tickets for Monday and Tuesday’s snowboard cross. So that means 28,000 folks will have all or part of their Olympic dream shattered.
They say conditions at Cypress are dangerous, and I believe them. Surely they didn’t want to do this. But they could’ve put these events in Whistler, where the conditions are sometimes iffy but usually more reliable than
That’s nice. And it’s good that most of the actual sporting events have gone off. In fact, it’s interesting to note the only delays so far have in Whistler for alpine events, not at
On top of all of this, of course, is the bus issue. Media buses seem to come and go at various times with no attention paid to schedules. In
(One thought occurs to me on the
VANOC today said they’ll bring in a new ice cleaner from
As I wrote the other day, this IS the country that invented the Canadarm, right? So why do we have ice machines break down and hydraulic lifts that can’t pop up from stadium floors and buses that can’t make it up a hill when they’re carrying Olympic athletes?
The Star was all over the Olympic cauldron issue the other day. They had Wayne Gretzky light the damned thing last Friday night. But when folks went down to see it they found their way barred by an ugly, chain-link fence. Of course it can’t be available for weenie roasts and folks need to stand back. But a chain link fence? Come on, guys.
Asked if these are the worst games ever, IOC spokesman Mark Adams replied, "I find it bizarre that people ask questions like that."
"I am shocked because the athletes are really happy," said VANOC spokeswoman Renee Smith-Valade.
Yes, they appear to be. For the most part. But many spectators - and folks who dreamed of being spectators - are pretty angry.
There may still be time for VANOC to recover. The city looks great. The weather (not that I trust the forecasters; see above) is SUPPOSED to improve today. But it may be too late for
The media is out for blood, folks, and the results will not be pretty.