The History of Olympic Mascots

Yesterday, the 2012 London Summer Olympic Games Organizing Committee unveiled the official mascots for both the Olympic and Paralympic Games. On the left of the photo is Wenlock, the Olympic mascot. On the right is Mandeville, the Paralympic mascot. The obvious dick jokes aside, I’m not sure that there’s been a dumber set of mascots ever devised. Really, they look like a pair of one-eyed monsters that were rejects from a Doctor Who story. So how ridiculous have past mascots been? Let’s take a walk back through time as I look at the history of the mascots of the Olympic Games. Continue reading

Hindsight Booking The Closing Ceremonies Concert

Alanis Morrisette, Avril Lavigne and Nickelback? The thought provoking “Whoa Vancouver” by Inward Eye? That’s the best we could muster for the whole world to see? While both the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver were wonderful through my gold coloured glasses, some of the talent booking decisions were beyond horrible. It’s not a matter of why would the producer hire these guys. More a matter of “Was everyone else booked and not willing to clear their schedules?” Bryan Adams singing something other than Summer of ’69 was a mistake and they just kept piling up from there. I’ve been saying since the opening ceremonies of the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing that a Canadian ceremony has to be a giant rock concert. Why not? After all, we have loads of rock and roll talent right here in our backyard. I’m glad that someone followed my advice, it’s just too bad that they did it in the worst way possible.

So let’s fix VANOC’s mistakes and put together a real concert for the ages just to show the world that we aren’t as musically hopeless as we came off during the closing ceremony. Continue reading

Sunday Link-Off: Closing It Up

The Winter Olympics wrap up today with the closing ceremonies at 7:30 PM EST. Not scheduled to appear is Minka Kelly. For some reason, Nickelback is supposed to be there. Does that make sense to anyone?

It’s mostly Olympic links in here but I have to lead with this link: Ole Miss is looking for a new school mascot and Admiral Ackbar is the early favourite. It’s not a trap! (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

The most random thing to go viral during these Olympics: The argyle pants that the Norwegian curling team wore. Hell, even I want a pair of those. (Mashable) As Sean Connery would say “You’re sitting on a gold mine, Trebek.”

We mentioned a while back that the Olympic Village has a supply of 100,000 condoms for the games, or about 14 per athlete and coach. Apparently your Olympians are putting forward Olympian effort in more than one venue. (CBC/National Post)

After the jump, scads more Olympic links, a couple token non-Olympic links that still deal with sports and/or Canada, and more Rock Sugar. Continue reading

Sunday Link-Off: An Olympian Effort

Couldn’t think of anyone to put up here so let’s play it safe an go with Megan Fox. Looks like her photo shoot studio is colder than Vancouver.

Just because the NHL is taking two-plus week’s off for the Olympics doesn’t mean the players are taking two weeks off. Actually, they are and that’s the problem. Ask the Oilers whose goalie made more news during the break than the whole rest of the season. (Calgary Herald)

I mentioned in Friday’s Humanoids column that the Brits aren’t happy with the Vancouver Olympics. Well, we aren’t taking that lying down. (Deadspin)

Most of Vancouver’s Olympic problems have been caused by bad weather. Everyone would have realized that Vancouver isn’t exactly a great winter city if they just used a reliable weather service like this one. (The Fucking Weather)

After the jump more Olympic links, stupid road signs, and don’t stop rocking. Continue reading

The Humanoids: The Five Rings of Hell

This is apparently the worst Winter Olympic Games in the history of the world if you ask the British press. But they’re a fickle bunch so I pay them little to no attention. I think these are a pretty Olympic Games. Of course, I’m watching them through maple leaf shaped glasses. That doesn’t mean that these games are perfect. There are some issues and people overshadowing what should be the greatest games ever. And, no, I don’t mean the broken cauldron. That was fairly embarrassing, though. Let’s blame that on the Newfies. Continue reading

How To Fix Curling Overtime

On the rare occasion, a top-level curling game will be tied after the end of regulation. Like many other sports, overtime in curling is sudden death. The first team to score walks away with the win. However, like the NFL’s overtime, there is a decided advantage with getting your hands on the rock at a certain time. Opposite to a football game, if a curling team throws second and has the final stone of the extra end, they have a decided advantage over their opponent. And, typically, if the extra end finishes in a tie, the game goes to a closest draw to the button contest to win. That’s the curling equivalent of a shootout. It’s not been an issue of contention yet but with it being an event with big Canadian hopes, the added focus could result in a crisis if a nation feels screwed. So what’s the best solution? I tell you after the jump. Continue reading

Sunday Link-Off: Happy Valentine’s Day

Maybe Julie Henderson will be my valentine. I doubt it though.

The opening ceremonies of the Vancouver Olympics was quite the sight. Especially the look on Nash and Gretzky’s faces when they realized something had gone horribly wrong. (Gawker TV)

Of course, the Olympics aren’t all fun and games. Protesters bitching about everything are wreaking havoc on Vancouver. (Boston Globe)

And don’t have your Olympic tickets yet? Well VANOC has setup their own version of StubHub to rip you off with service fees help you find tickets to the events you want to go to. (CNBC)

After the jump, Vince’s latest crazy plan, something else, and the SI Swimsuit cover curse. Continue reading

The Humanoids: Let The Games Begin

Yes, it’s that time of the bi-year again. It’s time for another Olympic Games. After months of hype, it’s time to light the torch. And it couldn’t come a moment too soon. After all, the sooner the torch is lit, the sooner we can get the real show on the road. The Road to Vancouver (as the broadcasters have called it) haven’t really whetted my appetite. I just want to get this thing started. With all the World Championships, X Games and various international events, the Olympics seem to have lost some of their uniqueness. After all, I consider a snowboarding gold in the X Games more prestigious than an Olympic gold. However, when national pride comes into play, that changes all the rules. Continue reading

Canada Names Olympic Hockey Team

Team Canada’s Executive Director Steve Yzerman had 23 roster spots to fill for Canada’s entry in the 2010 Olympic hockey tournament. Given the amount of talent that Canada boasts at a professional level, very few players were guaranteed to have a roster spot. So when the team was announced, there were some of the expected names and a few that came right out of left field. Get the roster and analysis after the jump. Continue reading

2010 Vancouver Olympic Medals Unveiled

vancouver-2010-medalsWith just under four months until the opening ceremonies at the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, the Vancouver Olympic Committee unveiled the designs for the Olympic and Paralympic medals. Each medal will be unique because it will feature an image cropped from the artwork of native artist Corrine Hunt. Continue reading