The Vancouver 2010 mascots are Quatchi, Miga and Sumi. How did these odd-looking mascots come to be? And did the graphic designer spend more than five minutes thinking up any of them?
SportsPickle examines their origins.
Dan Nielsen of Lansing, Michigan was looking forward to the Vancouver Games more than most. And not just because he's a big sports fan. No, Dan was even more excited for the two-week reprieve from his roommate Greg's non-stop analysis of all things athletic.
"Greg and I watch sports all the time, mostly football and basketball," says Dan. "And while he's my boy and all that, the guy thinks he's a friggin' expert oneverything. He's always screaming at coaches about very specific play-calls or berating players for being out of position, like he knows what he's talking about. The guy just never shuts up."
But the Winter Games and its obscure sports would put an end to all that. Or so he thought.Dan says his delusion lasted approximately three skaters into the men's figure skating short program.
"All of a sudden, Greg says: 'The Korean totally blew that combo.' And I was like: 'Dude, what the fk? You've never even watched this sport before!'"
Dan says the problem only grew worse as the evening wore on.
"By the end of the night, he was saying things like, 'he's going to get a big deduction for that footwork' and 'this guy has no shot if he doesn't throw in a quad.' He was just parroting what the announcers had said ten minutes earlier. I mean, I heard them too, guy. Who does he think he's fooling?"
In the days since the figure skating event, Greg's "areas of expertise" have broadened to include bobsled, biathlon and skeleton.
"We were watching women's skeleton women's skeleton- and the announcer said that some of the competitors were protesting the spoilers on the British woman's helmet. You know what Greg said? 'There are specific rules for headgear in the skeleton, and she must abide by them.' Really! He said that. If the Olympics were any longer, I'd buy my own TV for my room."
Greg was not available for an interview as he was involved in a heated message board exchange about the effect ice conditions had on the short-track speed skating results.
Another day of the Winter Olympics is in the books. Let’s see who medaled.
Bronze: Ski cross
If you haven't seen any of the ski cross at the Vancouver Games, it's a new Olympic sport and it's only the greatest thing ever. Here is what ski cross looks like:
More sports like this please, Olympics. Let's combine ski cross with the biathlon. Actually, let's combine ski cross, biathlon and nailing what appears to be Britney Spears' grandmother. That sport would look like this:
Silver: U.S. snowboarder Graham Watanabe
This quote it is not from yesterday, but I didn't learn of it until yesterday and if NBC's Olympic coverage has taught us anything, it's that something being new is a state of mind. So here's Graham Watanabe on how it feels to be an Olympian:
Try to imagine Pegasus mating with a unicorn and the creature that they birth. I somehow tame it and ride it into the sky in the clouds and sunshine and rainbows. That's what it feels like. Graham Watanabe.
And all this time I've been going with the easy joke of snowboarders being potheads. Lazy. Cliched. They obviously do a lot more than just pot and deserve to be recognized for it. Sorry for the oversight, dudes!
Gold: U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!
The American upset of Canada is being called the biggest U.S. hockey victory since the "Miracle on Ice" 30 years ago. And it is. But here's the problem: How can Americans celebrate beating Canada in an "upset" in hockey when every other day we mock Canada for failing to rival our greatness? America's 51st state. America's hat. Those ugly moose fkers. (I just made that one up.) We feared the Soviet Union. So it was an accomplishment to beat them. Whereas we like Canada. And maybe pity them a little bit. All the U.S. did in Sunday night's game was steal the lunch money from the quiet kid at school. He never did anything to us. But now he might starve. Does that make you feel good? What's to celebrate there? Other than BEING AWESOME!!! WOOOOOOOOOOO!!! Suck it, America's hat! You reek like scalp!
NBC News’ switchboard and email inboxes were jammed this week with complaint after complaint from viewers outraged that they were shown footage of a tragic plane crash in Austin on tape delay only.
“It’s a disgrace,” said emailer Jim Atwell.“You people at NBC should be completely disgusted with yourselves.It’s the 21stcentury, and you’re still airing plane crashes on tape delay?FOR SHAME.”
The crash, in which disgruntled software engineer Joseph Stack deliberately piloted a small plane into an Austin building that housed offices of both the FBI and IRS, was shown on the MSNBC network well after it had taken place.Many viewers expressed annoyance that they knew the results of the crash well before they went to tune in.
“Whoever is in charge of programming this crash should be hit with a plane,” said emailer Fran Walters.“I had already read about the crash online.And here comes NBC, Mr. Johnny Come Lately, with the footage of burning buildings and ambulances ten minutes later?Pathetic.”
A voicemail left by viewer David Fursby was even more vituperative.“This is a marquee news event.How does NBC explain NOT showing us the footage of this crash live, as it occurred?”
After leaving his voicemail, Fursby noted to reporters that this is not the first time NBC News has practiced such chicanery.
“It’s unconscionable.They show us footage of the Austin plane crash.Then, just when I was getting into it, they switch over to footage of the Haiti earthquake.And THAT was on tape delay too!And in between that, I had to suffer through some God awful puff piece about a soldier in Iraq whose father died when he young.Are you kidding me?”
NBC News president Steve Capus defended his network’s programming choices.
“We don’t actually have cameras there live when a plane crash occurs, because it is a spontaneous event,” said Capus.“While a minority of loud voices may complain about not being able to see the crash live, the fact is that tape delaying our coverage hasn’t hurt our bottom line one bit.”
Capus noted that ratings for the crash were up 10% over the network’s coverage of the Buffalo plane crash of May 2009.
“We’re going to keep doing what is in the best interests of out network,” said Capus.
That statement didn’t sit well with viewers like Fursby.
“I hope FOX wins the rights to the next plane crash,” he said, shaking with anger.
It was only a hockey game. Not much more than an exhibition, with both teams moving on in the tournament. But on a global scale, the USA's surprising 5-3 hockey victory over Canada is much more than all that: it is a condemnation of the Canadian way of life and a notice that the United States will not stand by and let its neighbor to the north run roughshod over the world.
With millions of Americans watching the game live on struggling financial network MSNBC, the U.S. jumped out to an early 1-0 lead and hung on to win despite being outshot 45-23, withstanding a furious late-game rush by the desperate Canadians. The win gave hope to the American people that the United States in the throes of a crisis of confidence can one day defeat the Canadians, be it economically, militarily or athletically. It also showed the world that the U.S. can defeat the hated Canucks.
In fact, the win seemed to have made more of an immediate impact than the 1980 "Miracle on Ice" victory over the Soviet Union. While it took 11 more years for the Soviet empire to fall, this morning Canada has no troops massed along the border and only maintains hold over three relatively useless and uninhabited territories: the Yukon, Nunavut, and the Northwest Territories.
The U.S. team clearly understood the significance of the victory, and their role in putting perhaps the first nail in the coffin of the Canadian empire.
"It's just a game, it really is. It gets us a bye," said U.S. wing Bobby Ryan. "It gets us a couple days of rest, a couple of days of practice together, but other than that, I don't think people should read too much into it. We could see these guys again and it could be for a medal."
"I still think we've got a long way to go," said head coach Ron Wilson. "There are some great teams out there."
And so the Canadian menace fell.
Another day of the Winter Olympics is in the books. Let’s see who medaled.
Bronze: Ugly Americans
In that lady's defense, all she was asking for Sven to do was say his name, country and what he'd just won for simple tape identification. It's standard industry practice. Remember after the Super Bowl when CBS sideline reporter Steve Tasker asked Drew Brees: "Say your name, team and what you've just won here." No one had a problem with that, now did they?
Silver: Awesome Americans
Evan Lysacek won gold in men's figure skating! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! And Russian Evgeni Plushenko, the only skater in the competition to attempt and land a quad, got the silver. After the event the ever-classy Plushenko said that without the quad, men's skating is no different than ice dancing. So, yeah a figure skater implied ice dancing is not a sport. That's like the interior designer calling the kettle "raven". Or something. Either way, congrats to Lysacek. He was the better skater. And he sported a beautiful Vera Wang man gown. Really.
Gold: Awesomer Americans
Fellow American figure skater Johnny Weir got jobbed by the judges and finished sixth. But he still remained incredibly entertaining. As he took the ice for his long program, NBC's announcers told us that Weir's parents always told him to be himself growing up, which is why when Johnny played soccer as a boy "he often ran in the wrong direction and pretended he was an ostrich or a giraffe."
There's really nothing to add to that. But in a week in which we've seen Tiger Woods reemerge, let's hope Johnny Weir doesn't fade away. Accenture could use a new spokesman: "Go on, be an ostrich or a giraffe."