SOCHI, RUSSIA — Every four years, the world watches with bated breath as the world’s best athletes perform awe-inspiring feats of skill, strength, and endurance. They shatter world records and achieve the impossible; a testament to the power of the human spirit.
Then there’s the Winter Olympics. We watch for the figure skating or because we really liked Cool Runnings.
While citizens of every nation busy themselves with preparations for their quadrennial Biathlon Parties (you’re all invited to The Flipside’s, but it’s a potluck so bring snacks), the International Olympic Committee has spent the last 4 years brainstorming new events to allow for a little more excitement in this year’s Games in Sochi.
The IOC and their Russian hosts hope that introducing fire, warfare, and ballistic elements to the more mundane events will increase viewership and reinforce the ideals of athleticism, teamwork, and heterosexuality that the games were founded on millennia ago.
Russian President Vladimir Putin vows that Socrates himself would have come up with Battle Curling had ice or the machinery required to polish granite to a frictionless surface been available in Ancient Greece. The Scottish are expected to dominate the event, which incorporates a fourth defensive player (the “torcher”) into each traditional team of a skip and two sweepers. Torchers are granted flame-throwers for distracting/incinerating the other team as they shuffle their stone toward the house. President Putin has graciously permitted athletes to wear flame-retardant clothing, but notes that only pussies will do so.
A new ski jump archery event, officially titled Sprungschießen, will require athletes to shoot a moving target with a bow and arrow while executing an aerial jump with at least two full backflips and a 360˚clockwise rotation. Archers will be scored on both the difficulty and execution of their jump as well as whether they shoot themselves or spectators. Danish athletes are expected to excel in the archery element, but the Irish promise to make a strong showing. Bow hunting may be prohibited in their country, but they’re used to performing difficult tasks while appreciably dizzy and disoriented.
The Russians and Bulgarians are early favorites for the Gold and Silver in Hypothermia Polo, where swimmers will play traditional polo in arctic waters, though the committee is still deciding whether and how to incorporate live, semi-hostile walruses into the match.
Slalom Shooting should be an easy win for the Slovenians, but most analysts are calling Figure Dueling a total free for all. Rumors are circulating that President Putin purposefully misinterpreted the event name; the President is said to have equipped the entire Russian team from D2: The Mighty Ducks with magic wands in place of épées and had them trained to use the Avada Kedavra charm on anyone wearing sequins or feathers.