The Olympic Games and the $13 Hot Dog

hotdog-sochiNot even Hot Doug charges more for his Wild Rice and Asiago Cheese Smoked Bison Sausage with Bacon-Garlic Mayonnaise and Emmental Cheese.

Thirteen bucks for a hot dog?

That’s the going price at the Olympic Games in Sochi, where you can get a can of beer to wash it down for another twelve bucks.

I’m chalking this sort of thing up as just another reason why I hate the Olympics. From the insane and bizarre excess of the Opening Ceremony to the pampered and coddled athletes who probably never had to work at a hot dog stand a day of their life in order to defray the cost of their skates, the whole thing just so … doesn’t speak to me, and doesn’t move me, I don’t care how many piano melodies are played during the athlete videos.

I couldn’t even give you a name of a competitor in the “Games” except for a few Blackhawks players. And that’s another thing – why is it okay for World Champion Professional Players to play in the Olympics? When I heard about Michael Jordan winning a gold medal in the Olympics, my first thought was, “Well, I hope he’s proud of himself.” I imagined a 5’9” Serbian basketball player sitting glumly in the locker room afterwards, humming his country’s anthem softly to himself.

I know these kids train hard. They have worked full shifts at their sports for years, their helicopter parents hovering just above them, dropping bags of cash at them as needed. Have you ever looked into the price of hockey equipment – let alone ice time!

My brothers and I would use bent sticks (but a real puck) on the ice patches in the frozen farm fields behind our house. We had fun, but we never got very good at it. We’d “body check” more than perfect our slap shots, knocking each other on our asses after slamming down our winter gloves. We’d do it for, like, half an hour – because it was cold, and because Gilligan’s Island was on.

So sure, we all knew concession prices at the Olympics would be high. Everything is high. The hotel rooms that wouldn’t fetch $49 a night off the Interstate are going for several hundreds of dollars. And some don’t even have room service or those waffle machines in the lobby.

A meal out, I’m sure, can run into the hundreds as well. Event tickets can cost that much. The Olympics are designed for those who don’t mind. They have strayed far afield from the amateur competitions they were intended to be, where youngsters gathered in the hopes of being cheered on and be able to wear a garland on their curls after a victory.

It’s all about the gold now – and those medals they’re giving out are as big as the clocks Flavor Fav used to wear around his neck.

We have come to expect prices to be outrageous at the Olympics and other sporting events. But there should be a world hot dog union that makes this a global requirement: a hot dog should always be around three bucks.

Otherwise, who’s really being played in the Olympic Games?

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