Matt Carberry (kingpin248) wrote,
Matt Carberry

In former Soviet Russia, OLYMPIC FLAME LIGHTS YOU!

The XXII Olympic Winter Games are just underway, even though the opening ceremony isn't until tomorrow night. When the Olympic flame enters the stadium, the cauldron will be lit and the fire sustained for sixteen days by a steady stream of 1,000-ruble notes. After all, Sochi has already gone through fifty-one billion dollars - what's a few million more at this point?

You'd think all that money would produce facilities that are state of the art and the envy of the world - for all parties; competitors, officials, fans, and media alike. You'd be wrong in thinking that. The international press arrived to the shore of the Black Sea to find, as John O'Connell tweeted, something "like an extended Yakov Smirnoff bit." The accommodations are not up to par in the eyes of the Western media - and in some cases, not even completed. Deadspin has a lovely compilation of what reporters are finding over there. And this doesn't even cover all of it; I read elsewhere that some of the faucets spewed forth raw sewage.

Given these circumstances, I would not have begrudged Shaun Walker had he bought the bottle of gin after realizing that it wasn't water. But it was that picture at the very top that got my attention here. Greg Wyshynski, aka "Puck Daddy," tweeted out a picture of a sign warning against depositing toilet paper in the toilet, kindly requesting that the bin beside the bowl be used instead. He's been getting some backlash, with people calling him "high maintenance" for this stance. I stand with Puck Daddy on this one. Even though your country is barely two decades removed from the shackles of communism, you signed up to host a world-class event. That means that for these two weeks, you need to be a world-class city. And part of being a world-class city is having sewage lines that can handle stained TP. Had MTV sent the Great Cornholio to the Games as a special correspondent, his bunghole might unleash a wrath that not even Putin's FSB could contain. But that's not why I initially found the picture humorous. I cracked up upon first seeing it because the rule on the sign was, and still is, the rule in the Carberry household, on the lovely North Shore of Long Island, New York, in the United States of America. You see, the Ancestral Palace - aka, my mom's house - has not more than a cesspool. Whether simply to keep the lines from clogging, or to save money by not pumping it out as often, placing toilet paper into the bowl was verboten growing up.

Here's the kicker - if you think this is bad, imagine the possibility of it being multiplied by ten, when Russia hosts the World Cup in four years' time. But let's end this on a positive note. In the (completely out of context) words of the great Borat Sagdiyev, "U S AND A! GREATEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD!" The start of another Olympic Games is yet another opportunity to demonstrate Borat's prescience.

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