With the Closing Ceremonies of the twelfth Winter Games approaching this weekend, the 2014 Sochi Olympic games will close just as all have before them have—leaving the world a bit more hopeful and inspired. Sochi was unique, however, being the first Winter Olympics for Russia and marred by discussions of social justice, a questionable infrastructure, and Bob Costas’ disgusting pink eye.
Women’s Ski Jump debuted for the first time in Olympic history. Germany’s Carina Vogt took home the gold medal in the Normal Jump, soaring 103 meters for 126 points in an event coming ninety years after men began ski jumping in the Olympics. Costas’ pink eye probably appeared only a day or two after exposure to a virus. Pink Eye, also known as conjunctivitis, is a serious infection of the cornea and can be easily spread from person to person. While non-life threatening, it is quite repulsive to look at.
It seemed ironic that for as cold of a climate Russia boasts, the first Winter Games held in the country were based out of Sochi where the daily temperature hovered around fiftyfive degrees fahrenheit. Experts say the high temperatures were blamed for poor snow conditions, unfair disadvantages, and only worsened the severe pink eye infection in Bob Costas’ right eye.
Sports enthusiast and doctor Tobias Eisenberg explained, “Sometimes when it’s warm out skiing is more difficult. The sun can dangerously reflect off the snow and it gets all slushy. And the humidity can really bother an already infected eye.”
One of the more memorable moments at Sochi occurred during the Women’s Ice Hockey Prelim, in which the US team faced off against its bitter Canadian rival. The Canadians won 3-2, scoring all three of their goals in the final period which Bob Costas reported with only one eye able to be open.
“What a great game,” said Helen Davis, of New York City. “Natalie Spooner played amazingly, but the real hero of the game was Bob Costas. Having the courage to go on national television with a swollen eyelid, likely caused from fecal matter irritating his cornea, and poetically broadcast an historic hockey game is what makes him so special.”
Originally published Feb. 2014