February 14, 2002
The French DO Stink!
by mike <email@example.com>
If it's not one thing, it's another. Here we are, witnissing the 19th Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City. This is supposed to be a time the world can unite and watch the best compete for gold. But of course, that makes the naive assumption that it's actually a competition.
What do I mean by that? A 'competition' implies that there's going to be a winner and a non-winner. Of course, I'm speaking of the pairs figure skating long program between the Russians and the Canadians (Notice of giant bias: I was born in Toronto). This issue, of whether the judges (the French and Russian judges, to be precise) 'threw' the competition to the Russians, has consumed the American and Canadian news media for the past two days.
I sat there and watched both programs as they happened. Let me tell you, I'm no figure skating expert. However, here's how I saw it: The Russians skated first, with a very beautiful program. However, they made two glaring mistakes, which, while not catastrophic, caught my eye and MUST have caught the judges' eyes. Team Canada, however, of David Pelletier and Jamie Sale, skating a wonderful program and did so flawlessly, insofar as I can tell.
The commentators raved about how 'it doesn't get better than that' and 'they know they've got it.' So did I. So did the world. ...until the judges placed them second. PFFT!
My problem with this is that two young athletes have been maligned by nameless judges who have no problems committing huge ethical violations that undermine not only the sport but the Olympics as a whole. Join me in a call to the IOC for the Canadians to be awarded the medal that was so rightfully theirs. Also, let's ask that the judges responsible for this miscarriage of justice be subjected to 30 days of non-stop showings of 'The Ninth Gate.' That would sure drive me nuts.
Published: February 14, 2002