Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Devin's Diary: Day Four

Our fourth and fifth days in Vancouver presented a much more relaxed Olympic experience. While Sunday was billed by the Canadian media as “super-Sunday” for the medal potential the day presented coupled with the dynamite trio of men’s hockey match-ups, the evening ended in disappointment and this morning felt like a collective Olympic hangover in Vancouver, when, perhaps, our ambitions might have exceeded our reach.

On Sunday evening, we took the new Bombardier-sponsored light rail car to Granville Island where a more subdued group of Olympic tourists and local families took Sunday strolls around the brick-lined streets in the Sunday afternoon sun. The Bombardier line ran for, perhaps, a grand total of one kilometre from the Canada Line to the Island. The wait to catch the train, coupled with the time it took to load, unload and travel oh-so-slowly along the temporary track likely exceeded the time it took to cover the same distance by foot. Yet, we, like tens of thousands of others donning Canadian colours, just followed the crowd… and the crowd was clearly waiting for the train. If nothing else, these games have proved the compelling strength of Canadian’s complacent acceptance of being regulated, directed and generally controlled. Gates, fences, barricades, pylons, police tape and traffic directors (all of which line the streets of the city) eventually strip you of the need to think or navigate – you just follow the crowd, line-up and wait for something to happen. We should really consider displaying a little more dissention, especially when being frisked at the entrance to the curling rink… our complacency is at an all-time high, simply because they make it so easy to be complacent here.

We went from Granville back out to the Olympic Centre (curling) to watch the undefeated Canadian women take-on the Chinese. While the venue waited for the curling to commence, the men’s Canada-U.S.A game was played on the big screens in the venue. It’s as if the unfortunate result of the hockey game, which concluded just minutes before the start of the curling game, spilled onto sheet B in the Olympic Centre, jinxing the previously undefeated Canadian women.

Guest post from U of S Alumnus Devin Dubois

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