I don’t know why, but I always thought medal-winning should skew toward countries that are synonymous with snow and cold. That’s one reason I pull for the Nordic nations. Another is because of those groovy matching national flags, which ought to earn a medal in itself.
Hard to believe, but the Olympics are over. Why I find it hard to believe, I don’t know. We all knew how long it was going to last, so the fact it ended on the last day, as scheduled, should come as no surprise.
I decided to list a few ways that the 2010 Winter Games inspired me:
1.?If I ever start a payday loan business, I want to call it Check Republic.
2. Nothing further.
I don’t know why, but I always thought medal-winning should skew toward countries that are synonymous with snow and cold.
(This differs from my attitude toward the Summer Olympics, when I expect to vicariously experience complete world domination through my country’s athletic representatives.)
Yes, the U.S. has its share of winteresque locales: Buffalo, International Falls and the entire state of Seward’s Folly. But we don’t qualify as a “snow country” because there’s too much climactic diversity. Thanks a lot, Tucson.
That’s one reason I pull for the Nordic nations. Another is because of those groovy matching national flags, which ought to earn a medal in itself.
But also, I feel bad for them when it comes to the identity factor. Take away Winter Olympic success, and all they have to show is universal health care and a 99-percent literacy rate. How awful that must be.
I thought I had yet another motivation to back the Fins, Swedes, Norwegians,?Danes and Iciclists, et al. I was under the nostalgic assumption that, in the recent past, Nordic athletes owned?the Winter Olympics. But I checked the medal counts from the '70s and '80s and realized I was wrong, quicker than you can say “Franz Klammer.” That shot my theory all to Helsinki.
Who was outslicking the Nordics back then??The likes of the Soviet Union and the East German Republic of China, of course. It was a real Cold War.
So my memory had betrayed me. It’s not like I forgot the strength of Soviet bloc sports, but why did I assume Nordensweiceland always won?
I asked a friend of mine, the one who frequently walks into the room just when I need a good direct quote.
“It’s simple,” he said, removing his Nokia cap. “Back in the day, countries like Norway were the best teams we were allowed to root for at the Winter Olympics.”
He made it crystal clear.
“You know, you’re right,”?I said. “Thanks, comrade.”
So I’ve changed my mind. I like things the way they are. Medals are more evenly distributed among participating nations. These days, it’s a fight to the Finnish.
Contact Dennis Volkert at email@example.com.