And, just like that, the 2010
Spring Winter Olympics are done.
Frankly, I’m not missing them. The choppers flying around day and night, the road closures, the crowds, the noise… It could have been worse, though. I could be living right next to one of the venues.
And I realise I probably would have felt differently if I’d gotten more in the Olympic spirit. And don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed some of the events, but overall I wasn’t as flag-wavingly fanatical as some of my friends who put up a Canadian flag on their Facebook profile, or spent every hour of every day watching the events, and who are now all going on about Olympic withdrawal.
Here’s what I enjoyed: first, watching a friend of mine run with the Olympic torch.
Second, the opening ceremony, which I’ve already blogged about. It managed to stir some patriotic pride in me, which I hadn’t felt in a long time.
After that, I followed the events somewhat, though never live (I’ll say this for CTV, their dedicated Olympic site kicks a lot of ass. I did cheer for Alexandre Bilodeau, our first gold medalist of the season; I cheered and wept with Joannie Rochette; I high-fived strangers on the street whenever we won a medal, and sometimes when we didn’t. And on Sunday, though we were supposed to play volleyball, the director agreed to let us listen to the hockey game live on the radio. I totally didn’t mind. Go Canada!
What else? Well, I did the tourist thing in my own city, and checked out the mint and cauldron, and Vectorial Elevation, and the cauldron again. Swung by to visit a few of the houses (such as Maison du Québec and Place de la francophonie) but those places aren’t really touristy places to visit, they’re to hang out in and drink and watch the games.
Oh, and I went to see Laurie Anderson’s show Deluded. That was… pretty fucking surreal. Which I expected, of course, so it’s all good.
And… that’s about it, really. I caught part of the closing ceremony online; that wasn’t nearly as impressive as the opening ceremony. Besides the nice pomp and circumstance, and an Olympic anthem I could actually understand (and a Russian anthem that kicked so much fracking ass), there wasn’t much that really grabbed me. Michael J. Fox is made of awesome, as are William Shatner and Neil Young, but the rest? All those cutesy self-deprecating jokes? Meh. Also, John Furlong should never, ever try to speak French again. Ever. The live feed died about halfway through, and after a couple minutes’ trying I gave up.
Though I will tell you, my heartstrings were tugged at the end of Young’s Long May You Run, when the torch just… went out. And I though, Oh, wow, it’s really over.
Okay, I admit it. Part of me will miss the games. But you gotta move on, right? I just hope all our guests left with a good impression of Vancouver. And, congratulations to our Canadian athletes. First in gold and third in overall medal count? Awesome.