Sunday, January 15, 2006

Avanti Torino

In only a few weeks the 2006 Winter Olympic Games begin in Turin, Italy. The Italian government has been printing extra Euros for two years in preparation. They have constructed a series of stunning venues with catchy names like Pinerolo Palaghiaccio, Cesana Pariol, Sauze d’Oulx-Juvenceaux and Sestriere Borgata. Apparently the more familiar names like Slope, Mountain, and Rink have been used before. The games will kick off on 11 February and by 26 February the city of Turin will know if they managed to lose less than 14 billion Euros on the deal.

Given the growing excitement, it is difficult to understand the lack of pre-games news coverage in the US media. To remedy this situation, the editor of Homo Insapiens has been embedded with the Swedish women’s luge team for a week. In spite of suffering from exhaustion, H I can report that there are already examples of the ‘agony of defeat’ that is such an important part of any Olympics.

Saudi Arabia’s ice hockey team went down to a crushing 73-0 loss in an exhibition match against a short-handed Canadian girls’ under-7 squad. King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz immediately offered Saudi citizenship to everyone in Norway and ordered all Saudis to lower their air conditioners to -12 degrees saying, ‘We’ll be back!’

Meanwhile, the North Korean government has announced that its entire group of athletes is withdrawing from the Winter Olympics in protest. (The North Koreans are still very bitter after the tragic performance of their javelin catch team at the summer games in Athens.) Team Manager Pik An Pak told H I, ‘it is an insult for us to come all this way and find out that the downhill figure skating event has been cancelled.’ President Kim Jong-il announced that the whole country would go on a hunger strike in support of the team.

The United States is outraged that the US Army’s 7th Mountain Division has been disqualified in the cross-country skiing event. Coach Donald Rumsfeld noted that the geography around Turin looks a lot like the northern border of Iran and pointed out the importance of constant training. Rumsfeld is disappointed that the Olympic Committee took particular exception to the use of live ammunition by the team.

In a tragic training mishap, the Irish 4-man bobsleigh team has suffered a major setback. Rocketing off the 140 meter ski-jump hill at 217 kilometres per hour, Team Ireland slammed into the BBC remote satellite truck, destroying the vehicle and injuring several bystanders. Although testing cleared team members of using steroids, the average blood alcohol level of the bobsledders was 2.87. Coach Paddy O’Malley said, ‘you’d have to be a feckin’ eejit to park that great feckin’ lorry there. It’s a feckin’ miracle the bottle of Jameson wasn’t smashed.’ Brakeman Seamus Doyle agreed saying, ‘The facken’ Brits facken’ did us in’. Eamon Gogarty, team trainer, added, ‘The gobshite English cost us the fockin’ gold medal’.

H I will provide additional in-depth coverage of Torino 2006 as soon as the Chianti runs out and the members of the Swedish women’s luge team get into their rubber suits.


Blogger birdwoman said...

Whenever Kim Jong Il is mentioned, the Team America movie puppet comes to mind...

And your names, pik an pak and paddy o'malley for example, are stellar.


4:09 PM  
Blogger siren said...

If only the Winter Olympics were this interesting! I'd be sure to watch.

9:20 PM  
Blogger Ananke said...

Too funny! I can only hope that the real Olympics will be this entertaining. I can't wait to see all the protests over who really should have won a gold medal this time around. ;-)

8:40 AM  
Blogger Abby Taylor said...

Everytime I read about drunk skiing... I think of you.

10:08 PM  
Blogger David Amulet said...

Your line about the Saudis offering Norwegians citizenship to enable a decent hockey team isn't that far from reality ... A few years back, the Gulf emirate of Qatar made a former Soviet Bloc weightlifter (if I recall the psort correctly) a citizen and used him in the Olympics!

-- dvaid

7:50 AM  

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