The Olympics. It’s the half-way point. Progress report is mixed. Yeah, we got that “no gold at home” monkey off our back, but the alpine ski team – clearly one of the most boosted of the “Own the Podium” efforts – was a total bust; balanced by a couple of nice surprises in skeleton and moguls. It’s obvious, though, that the “Win it All” hallucination is over. The USA pretty much took care of that.
So, how will we feel when they’re over? Will it be the lingering glow of a sense of accomplishment in having done something really worthwhile, or the equivalent of the hazy morning-after question, “Why DID I go to that party, anyway?”
I suppose it’ll depend on the prevailing view of why anyone volunteers to hold the Games in the first place – economic benefits, nation-building, establishing home court advantage or “rewiring our national psyche” – I have no idea. I doubt anyone really does.
One thing I AM pretty sure of is that, should Canada “lose” the gold in men’s hockey, there will be little joy in the Great White North, no matter the medal count, for a LONG time to come.
The deck seems to be stacked in our favor – accommodating opening schedule, small ice surface and maniacally partisan crowds. Or is it? I’ll bet Brian Burke is working hard at suppressing a smile at how far under the radar his “underdog” squad really is.
Remember, they play on small rinks, too.