Sochi drops ball on Olympic planning

Preparation lacking in new home for Winter Olympics.

Sochi, Russia has been thrust into the eyes of the world and has been the subject of almost as many jokes as Bob Costas’ infected left eye.

In the run up to the games, there have been several hiccups and laughable happenings from both the athletes and news media. They range anywhere from random orange peels found in the closets of unfinished hotel rooms to the lack of running water in Olympic facilities.

American Olympian Johnny Quinn discovered the advancements Russian bathroom doors when one locked him inside with no way to get out. He tweeted his infamous #sochijailbreak message, “… with no phone to call for help, I used my bobsled push training to break out.”  With this tweet, he posted a photo of a bathroom door with a massive hole in it, where Quinn had to break through.

There have been many more accounts of simple ridiculousness when it comes to the state of living in Sochi. Reporter Stacie St.Clair said, “My hotel has no water. If restored, the front desk says ‘do not use on your face because it contains something dangerous.’” In this tweet, she shows a picture of two glasses of water the color of apple juice.

The sad fact is that, according to a CNN Money report, this is the most expensive Olympics in history, costing Russia approximately $50 billion. However, that is not the whole story. The same article also had this to say: “Organizers may have understated the true cost to build (popular) support and to allay any concerns the (International Olympic Committee) may have that this country could afford to put on the Games.”

This report brings to light the corruption and gross misconduct by the Russian Federation to get these games approved.

The point is not that Russia didn’t deserve to have the games. What upsets me is how it got them and how it has been completely unprepared for the start of the event.

If the IOC wanted Russia to host the games, there should have been some kind of responsibility to the athletes, travelers, media and the rest of the world.

That said, the opening ceremony was great. Well, very visually stimulating. Like everything else that has occurred thus far, there was a relatively large mistake. There were five olympic rings, and yet, only four of them opened. One of the jokes that was thrown around when I was watching was that maybe the infamous Sochi stray dogs got to the guy in charge of hitting the button to open fifth ring, or that he got locked in a bathroom in an unfinished hotel. My biggest problems with this entire fiasco are that nothing was really prepared the way it should have been, it cost a lot more than it should have and the danger in the region surrounding Sochi is unbelievable.

Micah Dewey is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. He can be reached at [email protected].