The Olympic Village, Russia - If you have the feeling that the 2014 Olympic Games are a little short on activities, give yourself a medal. Five brand-new sports created for Sochi's big show were shot down without getting as much as a singe from the Olympic flame.
Only "slopestyling" survived, but it looks like just another excuse for getting Shaun White off the couch. Meanwhile, five exciting events have been scratched due to politics, physics or a little of both. Here's what you'll be missing:
This innovation was to be played on the curling lanes, giving them a second purpose. Ice bowling combines the slippery qualities of curling with the mathematical challenges of scoring furious ten-pin action. Unfortunately, the curlers and the bowlers couldn't decide who was going to bring the cigarettes and the Budweiser, so the new sport was shelved. Also: the Russian authorities were never thrilled with the notion of citizens renting their shoes.
What happens when you take four-man bobsleds out of their restrictive course and get them out in the open? What happens when you send them down one of the steepest peaks in Sochi, freestyle, letting the drivers find the fastest way to the bottom?
Trees happen. Cliffs happen. Avalanches happen. Collisions between sleds happen. Don't ever ask those questions again.
Children the world over can't pass up a frozen pole in the winter without testing it with their tongues. They make a game of it. The kid who can keep his tongue on the pole the longest without getting it stuck frozen is the winner.
The competition committee thought that the game would translate directly into an Olympic event simply by lengthening the time each contestant would have to remain on the pole. What they discovered was an immutable law of physics: "The length of time a body part remains in contact with a sub frozen object is inversely proportional to the body part's possibility of survival." Donations can be sent to the Sochi School for Speech Therapy. And don't send soup. It's hard to eat soup without a tongue.
Snowmobile Demo Derby
Fill an Olympic hockey rink with 50 snowmobiles, 50 hay bales, 50 snowmobile drivers and a douche with a checkered flag. Congratulations, you have just winterized the classic demolition derby. Unfortunately, all those snowmobiles have motors that give off massive quantities of carbon monoxide, making them unsuitable for indoor use.
"Our test audience alerted us to that fact by falling asleep shortly into the first event," said Herb Booker, director of Olympic ice surfaces and cocktail franks. "We're looking for work around. It's not every day that a sport so violent that even the audience is knocked out."
Show Dog Iditarod
This wanna be event combines the elegance of an uptown dog show with the grittiness of an Alaskan-style dogsled race. Grizzled huskies and other powerful breeds are replaced in the harnesses by poodles, pugs and Pomeranians.
"Sadly, our research into this event overlooked the fact that some participating countries value dog meat as a delicacy," said Sally Ramshackle, "That limited us to running the race only once, as a demonstration event, due to a sudden lack of contestants. But those who attended said it was exciting and delicious."