November 13, 2018

Winnipeg
-9° C, Partly cloudy

Full Forecast

Advertisement

Advertise With Us

Internet crash creates media madness at opening of Games

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 9/2/2018 (277 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Steve Lyons:

Hey! So, good morning. Or, 좋은 저녁입니다 (good evening) for you I guess. I got that picture you texted me — looks a little chilly over there.

Guess we should set the stage here. For you following along at home: Wiecek is in Korea for the Winter Olympics and is at PyeongChang Olympic Stadium getting set to watch the Opening Ceremonies. I've gotten up at 4 a.m. here in Winnipeg, so I can also watch them live — warm and cosy though in my basement — to bring you a special edition (if that's possible) of Say What?!

Get the full story.
No credit card required. Cancel anytime.

Join free for 30 days

After that, pay as little as $0.99 per month for the best local news coverage in Manitoba.

 

Already a subscriber?

Log in

Join free for 30 days

 

Already a subscriber?

Log in

Subscribers Log in below to continue reading,
not a subscriber? Create an account to start a 30 day free trial.

Log in Create your account

Your free trial has come to an end.

We hope you have enjoyed your trial! To continue reading, we recommend our Read Now Pay Later membership. Simply add a form of payment and pay only 27¢ per article.

For unlimited access to the best local, national, and international news and much more, try an All Access Digital subscription:

Thank you for supporting the journalism that our community needs!

Your free trial has come to an end.

We hope you have enjoyed your trial! To continue reading, we recommend our Read Now Pay Later membership. Simply add a form of payment and pay only 27¢ per article.

For unlimited access to the best local, national, and international news and much more, try an All Access Digital subscription:

Thank you for supporting the journalism that our community needs!

We hope you have enjoyed your free trial!

To continue reading, select a plan below:

All Access Digital

Introductory pricing*

99¢

per month

  • Unlimited online reading and commenting
  • Daily newspaper replica e-Edition
  • News Break - our award-winning iOS app
  • Exclusive perks & discounts
Continue

Read Now Pay Later

Pay

27¢

per article

  • Commitment-free
  • Cancel anytime
  • Only pay for what you read
  • Refunds available
Continue

*Introductory pricing schedule for 12 month: $0.99/month plus tax for first 3 months, $5.99/month for months 4 - 6, $10.99/month for months 7 - 9, $13.99/month for months 10 - 12. Standard All Access Digital rate of $16.99/month begins after first year.

We hope you have enjoyed your free trial!

To continue reading, select a plan below:

Read Now Pay Later

Pay

27¢

per article

  • Commitment-free
  • Cancel anytime
  • Only pay for what you read
  • Refunds available
Continue

All Access Digital

Introductory pricing*

99¢

per month

  • Unlimited online reading and commenting
  • Daily newspaper replica e-Edition
  • News Break - our award-winning iOS app
  • Exclusive perks & discounts
Continue

Mon to Sat Delivery

Pay

$34.36

per month

  • Includes all benefits of All Access Digital
  • 6-day delivery of our award-winning newspaper
Continue

*Introductory pricing schedule for 12 month: $0.99/month plus tax for first 3 months, $5.99/month for months 4 - 6, $10.99/month for months 7 - 9, $13.99/month for months 10 - 12. Standard All Access Digital rate of $16.99/month begins after first year.

We hope you have enjoyed your free trial!

To continue reading, select a plan below:

All Access Digital

Introductory pricing*

99¢

per month

  • Unlimited online reading and commenting
  • Daily newspaper replica e-Edition
  • News Break - our award-winning iOS app
  • Exclusive perks & discounts
Continue

Read Now Pay Later

Pay

27¢

per article

  • Commitment-free
  • Cancel anytime
  • Only pay for what you read
  • Refunds available
Continue

*Introductory pricing schedule for 12 month: $0.99/month plus tax for first 3 months, $5.99/month for months 4 - 6, $10.99/month for months 7 - 9, $13.99/month for months 10 - 12. Standard All Access Digital rate of $16.99/month begins after first year.

We hope you have enjoyed your free trial!

To continue reading, select a plan below:

Read Now Pay Later

Pay

27¢

per article

  • Commitment-free
  • Cancel anytime
  • Only pay for what you read
  • Refunds available
Continue

All Access Digital

Introductory pricing*

99¢

per month

  • Unlimited online reading and commenting
  • Daily newspaper replica e-Edition
  • News Break - our award-winning iOS app
  • Exclusive perks & discounts
Continue

*Introductory pricing schedule for 12 month: $0.99/month plus tax for first 3 months, $5.99/month for months 4 - 6, $10.99/month for months 7 - 9, $13.99/month for months 10 - 12. Standard All Access Digital rate of $16.99/month begins after first year.

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 9/2/2018 (277 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Steve Lyons

Hey! So, good morning. Or, 좋은 저녁입니다 (good evening) for you I guess. I got that picture you texted me — looks a little chilly over there.

Guess we should set the stage here. For you following along at home: Wiecek is in Korea for the Winter Olympics and is at PyeongChang Olympic Stadium getting set to watch the Opening Ceremonies. I've gotten up at 4 a.m. here in Winnipeg, so I can also watch them live — warm and cosy though in my basement — to bring you a special edition (if that's possible) of Say What?!

It's -24 C here this morning; what's it like there this evening that you have to be all bundled up?

We chatted yesterday about the planes, trains and automobiles saga that was getting there; how's the first couple of days been?

Paul Wiecek

First things first — I'm not even talking to you until you assure me you're actually wearing pants.

Steve

Do yoga shorts count?

Paul

Good God, no. That's worse than nothing.

It's been interesting so far over here. It's upside down land in a way — the 15-hour time difference has me and you on opposite schedules. It's discombobulating, to say the least, to be writing in the evenings but dealing back home with the morning web guys just rolling out of bed.

Wiecek bundled up for opening ceremonies.</p>

Wiecek bundled up for opening ceremonies.

I will say this — the world would be a kinder, gentler and vastly more efficient place if we just let Koreans run the show. They've got an army of young volunteers — not to mention the regular army — on the streets here making sure all the visitors have everything they need. It's so over the top I found myself this morning pretending that I knew where I was going because I knew the second I gave even a hint of being lost — which I was, hopelessly — I was going to have to deal with five very eager Koreans all over me trying to help.

Quite a fireworks show here a moment ago as this opening got underway. This is my third opening ceremonies — I also covered the ones in Salt Lake City and Torino. And it is by a mile the coldest here. The laptop is running at a snail's pace just writing this.

The weather is weird here. The temperatures aren't actually that bad — -10 C is the worst I've seen so far. But I swear the wind is coming directly from Mongolia. I've been colder here the past couple days than I ever am in Winnipeg on even the worst winter nights. I can't explain it. Maybe there really is something to the idea that at least Winnipeg is a dry cold.

Steve Lyons

You mean it would be a better place if 'south' Koreans ran it, right?

The CBC crew is chatting up the political situation in Korea over the first 20 minutes or so of the broadcast: this is your second time to the area in less than a year — do you hear about that on the ground there?

An speaking of cold: it's a little chilly in my basement this morning, so you'll be glad to know I now am wearing full-length lululemon sweats.

Paul

It's funny — everyone in the world wants to see Korea reunify, with the notable exception of a lot of South Koreans, who see the north as a crazy uncle you don't want living with you.

What they've done in the south is one of the great miracles of our time. They've taken what was a desperately poor people and turned this place into an economic powerhouse with a thriving middle class.

Also, they make great cars. I will stack up my Sonata against anything in its class.

Steve

There you are! I ask you about the political situation on the ground there and I don't hear back from you for 45 minutes.

As you know, I was in Israel for a couple of weeks recently — one of the many things I noticed was all the Hyundais!

Paul Wiecek

Someone pulled a cable here or something because the internet got knocked out in the middle of the opening ceremonies.

No joke. It's been chaos. A building full of type-A media people all freaking out because they suddenly cannot file. And they all think it's only happening to them.

Steve

Ok I've been thinking back on some of my favourite Olys opening ceremonies moments — the image of all those media folks freaking out is now included on that list lol.

Just watched the Canadian team come into the stadium. Big contingent. Did you get one of those toques?

Canadian ice dance team Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir lead team Canada into the Olympic stadium. (Paul Chiasson / The Canadian Press)

Canadian ice dance team Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir lead team Canada into the Olympic stadium. (Paul Chiasson / The Canadian Press)

Paul

The COC mercifully gave the Canadian media some HBC swag today to keep us warm at the opening. We all got Canada hats, mitts and a scarf.

No, I'm not sharing. I earned this stuff tonight. The working conditions have been sub-optimal, to put it mildly.

Steve

You'll never get it all stuffed into that duffle of yours when you leave — and you won't need it in Thailand and Cambodia on your vacation after the Games. I'm sure one of those helpful Korean volunteers would like it as a parting gift.

Pita Taufatofua carries the flag of Tonga. (Michael  Sohn / The Associated Press)

Pita Taufatofua carries the flag of Tonga. (Michael Sohn / The Associated Press)

Some dork from Tonga just came into the stadium with no shirt and all greased up — Perdita Felicien and Rosemary Barton are going on and on about how they don't mind .. Giggling away .. haha.. No way Scott Russell gets away with sexually objectifying comments like that. Sheesh.

I never thought I'd say this, but I miss Peter Mansbridge.

Paul

Mansbridge was great at these things. As good as they come.

That Tonga guy did the same thing in Rio. More impressive trick this time though. He must have been freezing.

Steve

How's the Internet situation?

How are you enjoying the show? The theme of peace should be expected at this time and place.

John Lennon's Imagine reminds me: favourite opening ceremony of mine was London 2012.

I've always been a fan of the Opening and Closing ceremonies — I like the pomp and pageantry of it all. Hey, I like shiny things.

When I started to think back about some favourite past ceremonies, the one that jumped to mind was London. Danny Boyle, who directed Trainspotting and Slumdog Millionaire put together a hip show that had a musical soundtrack featuring songs from great British acts like The Clash; The Who; The Rolling Stones; The Beatles; David Bowie; Queen; New Order and the Sex Pistols. There was an amazing rendition of Tubular Bells by Mike Oldfield and Paul McCartney closed the show with an emotional version of Hey Jude that included thousands singing along with the ’nah-nah-nahs.'

Two more highlights: Mr. Bean’s cameo during the London Symphony Orchestra’s performance and a skydiving Queen Elizabeth, who was featured in a Boyle-directed short movie with James Bond — Daniel Craig.

The other moment that came to mind was 1996, when a determined, Parkinson’s-afflicted Muhammad Ali carried the torch along the track and lit the cauldron to open the Games.

A Winter Games moment didn't come straight to mind — you?

Paul Wiecek

KD Lang singing that Hallelujah song by Leonard Cohen in Vancouver is my favourite moment. There's a million versions of that song but Lang nailed that one. And to do it in that moment was something really special. A quintessential Canadian moment, played out on the most international of stages.

Steve

Yeah, I was thinking of that as well. Have I mentioned before that buskers all over the world should be banned from doing that song? Man, they do it everywhere.

I guess Gretzky in the back of that truck in the rain en route to lighting the flame in Vancouver was also one of those Canadian moments. Although, I do remember the loogans getting a little rambunctious and feeling worried for the Great One.

Where are you now? I got your text that you had left the stadium and were now on a bus.

The Bombers just sent out a release — they have signed receiver Adarius Bowman. My first reaction is meh — he’s been good at times, but not sure picking up other teams’ castoffs has proven a successful strategy for the Blue and Gold.

Paul

I'm on a bus halfway between Pyeongchang and Gangneung, which is a little like being halfway between Winnipeg and Portage, only with more mountains.

Not sure Bowman can be termed a castoff exactly. The Esks would have loved to have kept him but he had a monster bonus coming this month and they couldn't make it work with the cap.

That's a really good pickup I think. Nichols needed another reliable target.

Steve Lyons

He drops too many passes — we'll see.

What did you think of the Opening ceremonies? I thought they were ok. The overall theme of peace and harmony was nice and done well. Awesome fireworks and that traditional drums set at the beginning would have even given Neil Peart goosebumps. Overall though, kind of average. No moment I will remember forever.

Fireworks go off after the Olympic flame was lit during the opening ceremony. (Sean Haffey / The Associated Press / Pool)

Fireworks go off after the Olympic flame was lit during the opening ceremony. (Sean Haffey / The Associated Press / Pool)

Oh hang on — I will remember that the Internet went out!

Paul

Those drums were incredible live. The whole stadium was vibrating. Great fireworks. I loved the light show. And it was shorter than usual — barely two hours. But this thing is about the athletes. And the real show starts now.

Steve

Right on. Thanks. Talk to you in your morning.

 

steve.lyons@freepress.mb.ca

paul.wiecek@freepress.mb.ca

Paul Wiecek

Paul Wiecek
Reporter

Paul Wiecek was born and raised in Winnipeg’s North End and delivered the Free Press -- 53 papers, Machray Avenue, between Main and Salter Streets -- long before he was first hired as a Free Press reporter in 1989.

Read full biography

Steve Lyons

Steve Lyons
Sports Editor

As a young boy in the 1960s, Steve would plead with his mother to let him watch Hockey Night in Canada on Saturday nights. And CFL football. And baseball. And PGA golf. And… well, you get the picture.

Read full biography

Advertisement

Advertise With Us

You can comment on most stories on The Winnipeg Free Press website. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press print or digital subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to The Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective January 2015.

Advertisement

Advertise With Us