Olympics Commercial Says Games Have Always Been Gay

There’s no doubt security was one of the biggest concerns at this years Winter Olympics. However, Russia’s anti-gay policies were likely one of the most widely talked about topics, both before and during the games. But whether Russian President Vladimir Putin likes it or not, some would argue the winter games have always been a little gay.

That’s according to the Canadian Institute of Diversity and Inclusion. The organization published this ad to play up the homoerotic nature of the luge.

The 2014 Winter Olympics came under huge scrutiny when Putin passed his anti-gay legislation last year. It bans the “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations to minors,” and essentially limits the rights of the country’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex people.

The CEO of CIDI told Global News:

“We like to focus on humour, yet at the same time really send a strong message about the need for inclusive behaviours in something like the Olympic Games.”

The CEO says the response to the video has been overwhelmingly positive. Not to mention, its gone viral with nearly 6 million views.

One blogger from Slovenia wrote:

“Oh, Canada, you’re so diverse and inclusive. I like that about you … Take that, Putin.”

Others, like a writer for Liberty Voice, say the company could’ve gone with a a tune that did a better job of suggesting the “wonderfully gay core of the 80s.” Charles Mudede, a contributing writer for Slog said the following might have been better.

Either way, I think humor is the best way to go when tackling such a sensitive topic. The ad makes you at least chuckle, while highlighting the need for the Olympics to remain inclusive of everyone.

Corruption & Sports, Russia’s favorite pastimes

Corruption and sports are two of Russia’s favorite pastimes.

From now until Feb. 23 both will be on full display at the XXII Olympic Winter Games in Sochi. These Winter Olympics are the most expensive Olympics ever, costing $51 billion. As the world arrives in Sochi, journalists are finding everything from unpainted rooms to restrooms with two toilets in the same stall. Threats from terrorists and cyberattackers also create an ominous shadow for games that are meant to bring the world together.

Snow in a Sub-Tropical Resort

The mere presence of the games in Sochi is a symbol of the corrupt nature of these games. Sochi is a summer resort town next to the Black Sea.

Snow? Well Sochi has it. Sort of.

Sochi snow

Courtesy Wikkipedia

Organizers stored snow from last year under special thermo blankets. NBC News reports that 75 percent of Sochi’s snow is manmade, using 403 snow guns that line Sochi’s mountains. If Sochi still doesn’t have enough snow, si.com reports that organizers built a snow making plant that can make snow at temperatures up to 59 degrees.

The snow isn’t the only quirk at these games. Far from it. Sochi is the warmest place in an otherwise cold country. High temperatures were in the 50s and 60s this week in Sochi. Highs were in the 40s and 50s in the mountains. Some skiers even skied in short sleeves.

Highs are expected to be in the mid to upper 50s this week as well:

 

Screen Shot 2014-02-15 at 8.19.08 PM

 

Toilet Trouble

There’s also the issue of toilet trouble. Bloomberg news is one of many media outlets to report that many restroom stalls in Sochi have two toilets and no partition to divide them.

Some toilets also had lids placed backwards:

Toilet 1

Russians also have some interesting bathroom rules:

Toilet 2

Bloggers and Russians are seeing the toilet gaffs as symbols of corruption that caused the cost of the games to soar. The internet meme below combines the word Sochi with the Russian word for taking a crap.

Soilet

 

Pillow Shortage

There’s also a pillow shortage in Sochi. Deadspin reports that Luiza Baybakova, a member of the catering company, posted this photo on Instagram telling volunteers that pillows will be transferred from their apartments to a storehouse.

The pillows will then be given to athletes who “unexpectedly arrived”.

Stuck Doors

But wait, Sochi’s doors must hate U.S. Bobsledder Johnny Quinn.

Saturday Quinn got stuck in a bathroom in Sochi when he showered before an appearance the “Today” show. Quinn couldn’t open the door and had to run through the door to get out. Quinn tweeted this photo after he finally got out.

Some yellow thing

Courtesy Johnny Quinn

It’s hard to believe, but Monday Quinn and two other bobsledders found themselves stuck in an elevator. Quinn said ” No one is going to believe this but we just got stuck in an elevator.”

Quinn 2

Courtesy Johnny Quinn

 

Even the opening ceremonies at the games were not spared embarrassment. The ceremonies tried to highlight Russia’s strength and power in the world. But once again Russia showed what $51 billion couldn’t buy. Five snowflakes were supposed to change into Olympic rings, but one malfunctioned.

Courtesy Hazboy

Courtesy Hazboy

 

Olympic Slogan or Katy Perry’s Next Album?

To create buzz 500 days before the 2014 winter games Russia announced the slogan for the Sochi games, “Hot.Cold.Yours.”  I would present two sides to this topic, but except for the Olympic committee everyone seems to be against the new slogan. The USA Today interviewed Sochi 2014 president and CEO Dmitry Chernyshenko and he explained the slogan like this:

“‘Hot’ indicates sports passions and the Games’ venue. ‘Cool’ stands for the time of the year and for how Russia is perceived by the rest of the world, and ‘Yours’ means shorter distances and the inclusive nature of the event.”

The USA Today blogger says the slogan sounds more like;

1. A failed Stuart Scott catchphrase.

2, Rejected marketing campaign for McDonald’s 1980s flop, the McDLT. (“Keep the hot side hot, and the cool side cool,” was the actual one.)

3. The title of Katy Perry’s next album.

Here a YouTube link to the McDonald commercial referenced.

The slogan was not taken well on Twitter in Russia either.  The Atlantic explains translation is not as clear as the committee originally announced to the English media.  It says the more literal translation is “Hot. Wintry. Yours.” He also says the term, ‘hot’, is more than just temperature.  In its context its meaning is closer to passionate, fervent, or sultry. This different meaning has had Russians running to Twitter with sexual jokes.  Here are some examples of of the Twitter sexual references:

Tweets from The Atlantic

 

All joking aside… the slogan sucks!  Its not like it even had a lot to live up to. London’s slogan was “Inspire a Generation.”  Not much better if you ask me.  The best thing for the Sochi Olympics is that people are talking about this slogan rather than delayed construction or other problems that will arise along the way.

Come the times of the games no one will be talking about how bad the slogan is.  Most people don’t even know there is an Olympic slogan… and Sochi better hope it stays that way.

 

Links:

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/gameon/post/2012/09/Sochi-releases-Olympic-slogan-that-is-neither-hot-nor-cool-70001112/sochi-olympic-slogan-hot-cool-yours/70001112/1#.UHJILmhhI20

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=A_IVEdu

http://www.theatlanticcities.com/arts-and-lifestyle/2012/10/worst-olympic-slogan-ever/3471/