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Ronnie Sykes: An Olympic Journal

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Needing an Olympic guide, The Eyeopener turned to Ronnie Sykes, our man in third-year ECE

Friday, February 8th, 2002

While siting around one night, Darren and I decided that it would be fun to go to the Olympics for a couple of weeks. What with my light ECE workload, I thought it might be fun. We hopped in Darren’s car and drove 15 hours straight to Sault St. Marie, Utah.

We checked into a Best Western near the railroad tracks and called Ticketmaster to get tickets for the Opening Ceremony. Darren paid with his VISA (a little pricey at $400 US), and we went to the box office to pick them up.

Unfortunately, we spent the next three hours driving around Sault St. trying to find the venue, to no avail. If it hadn’t been for my entire collection of Mariah Carey CDs being in the car, I would’ve gone crazy. We went back to the Best Western and watched the tail end, with Sting and Yo-Yo Ma.

Saturday, February 9th, 2002

Today we bought tickets for the pairs figure skating competition. I was excited to see my favourite figure skaters, Elena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze. We found a rink, but apparently not the rink. We ended up at Sault St.,’s OHL hockey rink, and watched the Greyhounds play a matinee. I couldn’t really focus on the game because I was disappointed that we were still lost in the Olympic city. I resolved to buy a map for the next day of competition.

Sunday, February 10th, 2002

Map in hand, we headed over to the ski hills to check out the alpine events. The parking lot was practically empty. I thought perhaps people were partying too late at the Barenaked Ladies concert and were too tired to come watch skiing.

The man in the chalet said we needed skis if we were going to on the hills. I didn’t remember seeing spectators at previous Olympics wearing skis around the hills, but maybe things were a little different in Sault St. We skied the hills for most of the day trying to find the competition, but came up empty. We did meet a lovely group of skiers from the Sault, though. They gave us tips on where to ski, but looked confused when I mentioned how excited I was about seeing some Olympic action. I was definitely starting to get suspicious now. About Darren that is. That guy can’t read a map to save his life!

Monday, February 11th, 2002

Today, Darren didn’t get out of bed until 8 p.m. As a result, we had to watch everything on TV. I was so disappointed I wouldn’t get a chance to see Berezhnaya and Sikharulidze skate in person (it’s okay, there’s always Ice Capades), but I was elated when the pair won the gold medal! People were booing the decision for some reason, but I went to sleep feeling nothing but warmth.

Tuesday, February 12th, 2002

Today, I have two topics. A) The Canadians got exactly what they deserved. B) I am getting out of Sault St.

First, the Russian pair skated beautifully and made only one mistake. The Canadians, on the other hand, skated beautifully and made no mistakes. The Canadians, on the other hand, skated beautifully and made no mistakes. You see? As people in a society, we should embrace flaws and reject perfection. I’m the first to admit that I’m not perfect, but that’s why my mother loves me. Well, most of the time she asks why I haven’t met a pretty girl, but apparently they’re only interested in perfection.

And B, the Olympic Games are a sham! All of the events are pre-recorded and everything is predetermined. There’s no triumph of the human spirit here, just a cold-blooded coup by the International Olympic Committee to confuse the public. Why would they do this? Power. And boy, do they have it in clubs.

Wednesday, February 13, 2002

We drove back into Toronto today. I stopped by the campus to see if any people I know were around, but then I remembered that Darren had just dropped me off, and Kyle and Amos didn’t go to Ryerson.

I picked up a copy of The Ryersonian, and I’ve got to tell you, I wish I had seen the look on my face!

They had two people kissing, right on the cover! I mean, really kissing! That guy’s tongue was right down that girl’s throat, and they were playing tonsil hockey. Okay, I couldn’t see that for sure, but the graphic image was enough to make me sick to my stomach.

I actually threw up right then and there, just thinking about their long pink tongues making contact with one another. You’d think they could put that kind of a graphic display on the inside, and put some kind of warning on the cover. Oh god, I feel sick just writing about it.

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