Sunday, January 08, 2006

Olympic's Deserve Better

I read this article , with a tinge of sadness.

Frankly, I can't understand why Turin, Italy is having trouble selling out Olympic venue tickets.

I recall in Calgary 1988, even as a local, with lot's of advance notice, I had trouble getting venue tickets. Within the first 10 days of tickets going on sale, all the high profile venues were sold out.

Of course, little did I know at the time that the tickets I was lucky enough to score (ski jump and bobsled) would turn out to be two of the biggest stories to come out of the Calgary Olympics.

You remember Eddie the Eagle?? He was that crazy guy from England who had absolutely no formal training and decided he was going to jump off of 90 metre ramps like these:

Another team that captured the spirit and heart of the 1988 Olympics was the Jamaican Bobsled Team. These guys trained at home on sand of all things!

It was their first venture into the winter games, and although they placed last, they won the hearts of many Calgarians. In fact, a movie was done about the team that starred John Candy as their coach.

For me, the 1988 Calgary Olympic games were an absolute success. And one that I have yet to see be repeated since.

Perhaps it was the flood of locals who helped out any way they could -- whether it be through volunteering, or opening up their homes to athletes & their families. Perhaps it was the way we all joined together to create a lasting legacy for our City. Probably a little bit of everything.

So shame on Italy for not embracing the spirit of these games and for missing a wonderful opportunity to have the Olympics showcase their country for the world to see.


At Sun. Jan. 08, 02:24:00 p.m. MST, Blogger Justthinkin said...

Aiz...just a little factoid. The 1988 Calgary Olympics was the only one in the history of the modern games to MAKE a profit!! Now you know why you guys haven't got them back. You didn't pay off enough of the big-wigs :)

At Sun. Jan. 08, 04:05:00 p.m. MST, Blogger Aizlynne said...

That's a sad commentary isn't it... lol.

I did know actually that fact Jamie ... but a good one to point out to those not in the know.

At Sun. Jan. 08, 05:16:00 p.m. MST, Blogger Debris Trail said...

The Olympics have become an arm of United Nations and EU Olympianism; that is the belief that mega-organizations can solve the world's problems by having all members sit together as equal partners. The IOC and UN and EU are all one big circulating musical chair. The kickbacks and briber are just an extension of the UN... I personally quit watching the Olympics as a result about 3 Olympics ago. I was in Calagary for 88, and had a great time. Those were days of innocence... those days are no more.

At Sun. Jan. 08, 07:25:00 p.m. MST, Blogger ABFreedom said...

What debris trail said.... don't watch them either...

At Mon. Jan. 09, 04:55:00 a.m. MST, Blogger Canadian Sentinel said...

Sigh... the Olympics aren't the same anymore. They've been corrupted by politicians, just as the UN and the Canadian gov't by the Liberals.

Left-wing extremism, irrational political correctness, drug use for performance enhancement, money, money, money and the continuing threat of terrorism have all conspired to quell the enthusiasm of the world for these once-great gatherings of excellence, sportsmanship and genuine diplomacy, which brought the world together in even the worst of times, which was a good thing. It may all be over now.

Another casualty of the move away from the values upon which the civilized world was founded.

Reminds me of one of the terrorists from the Munich Olympics. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (damn, I forget the bloody spelling, not that it's important), ruler of Iran, was one. He says so on his official website, even telling the damn story! Will he attack the Olympics? That's a worry. History might repeat itself...

At Fri. Jan. 13, 12:27:00 a.m. MST, Blogger Rob Huck said...

From what I've gathered, Aizlynne, the Calgary Games were actually not entirely embraced by the whole city until just before the games began. Although there were plenty of volunteers and top-notch organizers, there were numerous complaints about the costs and necessity of putting on such an event in that city.

The biggest success story of those Olympics was how the city came together at the right moment in order to put on a big show.

I also believe that the Calgary Olympics were the FIRST winter olympics to make a profit (of any substance, anyways). The 1984 summer games in LA made an exceptional profit as it was the first corporation-dominated games. The reason Calgary won the 1988 games was because they bid before the 1984 summer games and before then no one wanted to bother losing money like Montreal in 1976.

Since then, however, the games have gotten bigger and bigger because the stakes are much higher. Hence, only the rich megapolises -- New York, London, Madrid, Paris and Moscow -- are able to afford to bid on the games, let alone put on such a grand show. They wouldn't be bidding for the games if there weren't such a huge pay-off.


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"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts" - Sir Winston Churchill.

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