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2010 Winter Olympics (XXI Olympic Winter Games)

A multinational sports and culture festival being held in Vancouver, Canada on February 12 through the 28, 2010.

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Could Global Warming End The Winter Olympics? I hope so!

  • Feb 23, 2010
  • by
Rating:
-1
Growing up, I was enthralled by the nationalism, the honor, and the athleticism that the Summer Olympics represented.  The Winter Olympics failed to evoke any of the feelings from my childhood.  What's wrong with the Winter Olympics?  Let me count the ways...

The Events

THE GRAVITY EVENTS: Several of the events of the Winter Olympics rely heavily on gravity.  Bobsledding, luge, skeleton, etc.  Due to basic physics, a primary goal for these athletes is to convert as much potential energy into kinetic energy.  More specifically, fat athletes fall down faster.  Note to Winter Olympic hopefuls... train hard, but not TOO hard.

THE GLITTER EVENTS:  I think it's obvious I'm talking about ice dancing/ice skating now.  The guys glitter more than a Stephanie Meyer vampire.  An actual teaser from NBC said "SPORT + ART = GOLD".  I feel that "ART" is weighed too heavily for an Olympic sport.  The commentators even commented that the song selection and costumes would be reflected in the scores.  Probably not exactly what the Greeks had in mind.

THE GUESS WHO WON EVENTS:  I actually do enjoy the alpine sports for the speed, athleticism and pure bravery, but without "head to head" competition, it's nearly impossible to tell who has the fastest time run after run.  Instead of getting the rush of excitement while the athlete is actually competing, the entire event is just waiting for the athlete to finish so you can see the official time or judge's score.

NBC's Delayed Coverage

NBC has been ruining sports for several years now, but they really stink it up when the Olympics roll around.  With their delayed coverage (tape delaying events to show during primetime), we all have to pretend like ESPN, CNN, New York Times, etc. don't exist if we want to be engaged in the events shown during primetime.  Part of the draw for watching sports is knowing that you're watching a moment that is being shared by the world.  However, with NBC, you get to share that event just with people in your timezone who have never heard of the Internet.  Well, at least NBC takes that time to edit down their Olympic coverage to give you just the absolute best moments of the day... well not exactly.  We get to watch athletes warm-up, go to commercial breaks, wait for scores, take another commercial break, then watch a heartfelt backstory on the athlete... rinse and repeat.  NBC has taken the "human story" factor a little too far.  During one event, I was told multiple times that one athlete's family had missed several mortgage payments, but were there in Vancouver to be supportive.  I kept waiting for a number to flash on the screen so I could send money.

PUT IT INTO CONTEXT

Where are the world records?  How does this year's group of athletes compare to previous Olympics?  Due to the nature of most of the winter events, the courses and tracks change constantly so it's impossible to have World Records to compare to previous years.  Part of what made Michael Phelps' performance in 2008 was that not only did he win, but he was shattering world records along the way.  Along those lines, since many events have athletes compete one after another, there is a huge advantage to be gained by luck of the draw.  Course conditions change and watching others scout out the course before you gives a huge competitive advantage.  In events that can be decided by tenths of seconds, there doesn't appear to be a level playing field.

IT'S NOT ALL BAD

Despite all my complaints, there are some perks to the Winter Olympics.  First and foremost, I get to practice my USA!  USA! chant.  Also, I was surprising amused by Meryl Davis' resemblance to the Na'vi from Avatar.  I think if they'd painted themselves blue and put tails on their costumes, they would have been a lock for the Gold.

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March 03, 2010
I love cranky reviews -- they make me think. And I think you're wrong. These winter sports are even more compelling than the summer ones. Many of the winter sports are down-right dangerous, as unfortunately was shown by the death of the young luger. I can't see myself, or anyone without MANY years of training, going down the slalom, ski jumping, or going down a bobsled run. Even the pairs skaters could be seriously hurt. By the way, I love the athlete stories-- their lives are so dedicated to their sport. That element of danger makes me watch (or not watch). I'm ready for 2014!
 
February 24, 2010
Terrible Title. But some nice comments in the review. I disagree in general, but that's ok.
 
February 23, 2010
I gave this review a good rating, but I disagree. While there is way too much coverage of ice dancing, boblsed/luge (which are very boring after watching a few runs, IMO) and even the big ski jump, there are some immensely entertaining/exciting events: speed skating (long and short), hockey (much better and more exciting than the NHL, due to the larger ice and different rules), alpine skiing events always get me, boarder and ski-er cross (completely insane), half-pipe snowboarding, curling (you gotta love a sport where I legitimately feel I can be internationally competitive with a 6 pack in me) and, perhaps the most surprising of all... nordic skiing (cross-country & biathalon... who knew skiing + shooting could be so riveting).
 
February 23, 2010
You are way off base on this one. The Winter Olympics are far better than the Summer Olympics. Perhaps you had to grow up in a snowy place to enjoy them. The gravity sports are where it is at! Skiing, Luge, Skeleton can come down to hundreths of a second but that hundreth is determined by the skill of the competitor. You have to go and look for where the competitor picked up the split second that was needed to win. Totally agree on NBC's coverage. It stinks!
February 23, 2010
You're right. I failed to mention that my California upbringing didn't expose me to very many winter sports, so my knowledge of the sports is limited. On the speed skating, NBC would occasionally super-impose a line on the ice showing the fastest skater's pace so you could see exactly how and where a skater made up the time. If they could include something like that for the downhill races and like, I think it would greatly increase my interest in these sports.
 
February 23, 2010
Your headline = terrible  ...But I couldn't help but lol!  Interesting commentary.  I haven't really watched the last few Olympics, but I do read about them in the news and it feels like the Winter Olympics are not as epic as the summer ones.  They're pretty to look at though, but as you pointed out, that isn't really the point ;P
 
1
More 2010 Winter Olympics reviews
review by . February 21, 2010
posted in Go Canada
China's first Gold
I've hardly watched the Winter Olympics as most of the places I've lived in hardly broadcast it (unless it's on Sports on Cable TV but that's one channel I don't subscribed to). This year though, I'm living in Shenzhen and the China's state tv station CCTV-5 (a sports channel) has been telecasting the various competitive programs throughout the day and it's hard to miss it!      Originally, I had titled this review "China's first Gold". …
review by . March 01, 2010
Canada Wins Gold in Men's Hockey
I'll be the first to tell you I'm not a Hockey fan. This is because it's not a hugely played sport in the US and I wasn't brought up with it. I was brought up watching football. Nevertheless, the Finals of the Men's Hockey of the US vs Canada was something I was NOT going to miss. Given that the US was able to beat Canada(with a score of 5-3) early on in the tournament added to the excitement of this game.      Canada got a quick jump on the US scoring two unanswered …
Quick Tip by . March 20, 2010
posted in The Great Outdoors
I wasn't able to catch a lot of the sports this year, but the figure skating I saw was beautiful.
Quick Tip by . March 01, 2010
The United States won the most medals. Some great highlights. In hockey I yelled when U.S. scored with 24 seconds left. I scared the cat.
Quick Tip by . March 01, 2010
Did not watch much of it but I agree that the Men's Hockey Gold Medal game was aweome!
Quick Tip by . February 22, 2010
Best of luck to host Canada for Men Ice Hockey!!! Go, Canada, Go!!!
Quick Tip by . February 18, 2010
Beautiful opening ceremony (minus the awkward ending). Love watching the figure skating, downhill skiing, and speed skating competitions!
Quick Tip by . January 08, 2010
Shaun White, All The Way, Gold Medal!!! Go USA!
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Andrew ()
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I'm a technology early adopter. I thoroughly enjoy geeking out with the latest hardware, software and electronics. I probably have as much fun setting up, tweaking, and configuring systems as I do actually … more
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Wiki

The 2010 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XXI Olympic Winter Games or the 21st Winter Olympics, will be held on February 12–28, 2010, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, with some events held in the resort town of Whistler nearby. Both the Olympic andParalympic Games are being organized by the Vancouver Organizing Committee (VANOC).

The 2010 Winter Olympics will be the third Olympics hosted by Canada, and the first by the province of British Columbia. Previously, Canada was home to the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal and the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary. These will also be the first games to be held in a National Hockey League market since the league allowed its players to participate, starting at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan.

Following Olympic tradition, then Vancouver mayor Sam Sullivan received the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony of the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino, Italy. The flag was raised on February 28, 2006, in a special ceremony, and will be on display at Vancouver City Hall until the Olympic opening ceremony. The event will be officially opened by Governor General Michaëlle Jean.
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