The Vancouver Olympics are practically upon us - tonight I went and saw the opening ceremonies dress rehearsal. It was very cool, but that's all I'm going to say about it. They do request your discretion and so forth. I'm not a big olympics booster, but I'm not a dickhead either.
I'm not sure what they could say or do if I were to announce that "Anne Murray jumps out of a giant cake and raps Snowbird but changed the lyrics to 'Snowboard'." [NOTE: That does not happen in the ceremony... or rather, maaaaybe it happens, maybe it doesn't, maybe something similar happens.] But I just don't see the point in giving anything away. Suffice to say the stage craft is predictably awe inspiring.
Getting into BC Place was reasonably simple - security wasn't that bad. But getting away from the building was a bit nuts. The route to get away - ultimately to the same entrance we arrived at - was long and circuitous, and despite being a neighbourhood that I am quite familiar with (I have worked mere blocks from the stadium for over five years I bike and walk around and past it regularly) I spent an awfully large amount of the time trying to grok where the hell I was being directed to and whether that was going to be good or bad for getting home.
Get this! For those people taking the Expo/Millenium Skytrain line away from the venue - you will actually end up being directed to Main Street station. If you are unfamiliar with Vancouver, there is also a station named Stadium Station. It is named Stadium because it is the closest station to the Stadium. Main Street Station is a 10 minute walk further down the line. To be fair, once you've navigated the labyrinthine security course away from the venue the difference between going to Main Street and Stadium is nominal... but it still seems broken.
I've said this in a dozen places already, I did not vote for the Olympics. Indeed, I voted against them in the plebicite. But they are here and I have every intention of enjoying what my tax dollars are paying for, and every intention of making the experience as pleasant for our international guests as I can. The latter is the best route to getting the most out of it for the residents of Vancouver - the time for protesting is essentially past. There will come a time again when we should clearly lay out cautionary tales of how Vancouver has been ass-fucked by the IOC. But that is not how we will build tourism over the next few weeks, that is how we will undermine our position of (grudging) opportunity.
Friday night, Jodie and I went out and witnessed some of the free delights of the Olympic event. We saw the majesty of Vectorial Elevation and shared a very special moment. It's going to be a very interesting few weeks, that is for certain.