Monday, June 30, 2008

Canada at the Olympics: Our suffocating love kills all hope

Every four years Canadians learn the name of one special athlete. He or she is selected by the noble and wise minds of CBC Sports to be the ray of hope that gets Canadians through the 256 ½ hours of Summer Olympic coverage.

Breathlessly, we are told about how this individual will be the one that rises up to the occasion and ends the misery (because by that time in the Games there will be misery) and allows Canadians from coast to coast to coast to bask in his or her reflective glory.

Yes, the CBC announcers say, we may have only managed a disappointing 11th place finish today (from the world championship bronze medalist) but don’t worry. The Great Canuck Hope ™ has yet to compete.

The GCH generally competes in the latter half of the Games (the Ceeb needs ample time to hype them) and is usually a reigning world champion. Sometimes the GCH has had success at an earlier Olympics. Our national voice tries to make the GCH a hero to all. But unlike the American broadcasters—who have made an art out of creating the All-American Hero (usually, and disturbingly, an anorexic 15-year-old gymnast), the CBC usually just comes off as a tad bit desperate.

So, Jane Canuck fails to advance to the final. Back to you Ron…

(Flipping pen in air while wearing a exasperated look) Well, people don’t know that the Moose Jaw native has been fighting head cold all week What a trooper for her to go out and compete. But, don’t worry Canada, the GCH is up in two days. The CBC will have LIVE! Coverage of his preliminary heat at 4:30 a.m. Tuesday…

Sadly, the GCH sometimes gets nailed for using steroids or falls over the first hurdle. Then things turn real bad in CBC Sports-land. People actually start to feel bad for Ron McLean. It’s a national tragedy. It’s all we can do to get through the rest of the Games (another reason why the chosen one is a second week athlete).

Meet the 2008 GCH.

Olympic champion, world champion, world record holder.

The whole country is depending on you Adam. No pressure though.

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