The Best Defense
Members of the expert selection panel responded to criticism in the traditional Olympic way: trashing another Olympic city’s logo by comparison.
Wei Yew, an Edmonton graphic designer who served as a judge and has written a book on Olympic imagery, singled out the logo for the upcoming 2006 Winter Games in Turin, Italy — a wedge-shaped triangle of what appears to be blue mesh.
“Try and figure out what the hell that is,” Yew told the Canadian Press, whose reporter agreed that the logo appears to be a “slice of blue Swiss cheese.”
Actually, it’s a stylized representation of Turin’s signature landmark, the Mole Antonelliana, a 19th-century city tower that for a time was the world’s tallest structure.
Just Wait: It’ll Get Worse
Based on the Vancouver logo, we can hardly wait for the upcoming release of the official Games mascots.
Prediction: No matter how cheesy they prove to be, they’ll probably look good compared to Neve and Gliz, two animated ice creatures unveiled at a Turin media event featuring two people walking around in furry suits and what appeared to be giant urinal cakes on their heads.
The offspring of a snowball and an ice cube, Turin’s mutant, walking frost blocks are the latest in a long line of truly horrific Olympic mascots, peaking with Phevos and Athena, the unforgettable dancing condoms of Athens.
Second-Hand-Smoke Boy Rides Again
No one should be surprised that, with the 2010 Games looming, Canadian snowboarding/cannabis icon Ross Rebagliati is ready for the big comeback.
Rebagliati, a hero in Canada for his 1998 Nagano feat — becoming the first Olympian ever stripped of a gold medal for testing positive for a performance-impeding substance — told Canadian reporters last week he’s getting back on his board in a comeback bid he hopes will peak with the 2010 Games.
He’s 33 and hasn’t competed since 2000. He would be 37 when the Games come to his hometown of Whistler. But at least he’s up front about his reasons for taking what clearly is a long shot.
“There’s no pension for athletes,” Rebagliati told the Vancouver Sun. “Once we were awarded the Olympics I knew I had to make a comeback. … It’s too perfect. I have to cash in.”