The Olympics is taking place in faraway London, a distant affair compared to the 2010 Winter Games in Canada’s very own Vancouver, British Columbia. To find out what Torontonians think about the 2012 Summer Games and how this year’s events stack up against those in Vancouver, The Epoch Times took to the streets to get comments from passersby.
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Lefebvre listens to the Summer Olympic Games on the radio, as she does not own a TV. “I got rid of my TV about a year ago, and this is the first time that I miss it. … I wish I could watch [the Olympics].” She got rid of her TV because “there was nothing on, it was too expensive, and I just watch movies now.”
She was listening to Matt Galloway on CBC and was surprised to learn that there was no booming business in the areas surrounding the Olympics. “I don’t know the details, but just on the tourism side, apparently restaurants are empty, cabs are hurting. That side of it surprised me, I’m sure that it didn’t happen in Vancouver. Usually there is [business] at a city with the Olympics.”
From a Canadian’s point of view, Lefebvre believes the British are very proper and polite and there seems to be that whole aspect to the London Games. In contrast, Canadians are very relaxed and that showed in the Vancouver Games, it seems to her.
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“After work, I try to go home and take a look … see what the highlights are, go on the news, and see what’s happening. [On Wednesday] I found out that we won a silver medal in rowing, which I thought was an exciting event,” says Toor.
Toor says one major difference between the Vancouver and London Games is that there’s a lot more controversy surrounding the London Games.
“In the Vancouver Games, there was more unity for Canada. They’re trying to bring that out now. But it’s the fact that the  Games were held in Canada. We felt more patriotic while watching it.”
Another difference is that the Vancouver Games were in the wintertime. Toor thinks that many Torontonians have a lot on their plate and on their minds elsewhere during the summer. “I don’t feel everyone is as interested in the summer games as the winter games.”
Also, she says it’s great the Games are in London but “the time difference makes it hard to watch, and you can wake up really early to watch it, but it doesn’t work with schedules.” “It’s still interesting to watch though,” she adds.
“Canada’s not doing so well,” says Rocas. “I guess we’re stronger in the winter games compared to the summer games for sure. That’s probably the main difference.” He enjoys the summer games more because he is a huge fan of track and field. “That’s a big [summer games event].” He also enjoys watching swimming.
Rocas thinks Canadians are definitely less spirited for the summer games, and believes “that has a lot to do with the fact that we’re not so good in the summer games. And in the winter, all of Canada usually supports the hockey team, so everyone really stays tuned into that, whereas here, there’s nothing to cheer for, or so to speak.”
“[The Games] meant more when it was in Canada, but Great Britain’s a great place too, so I think that it’s cool being held there. We get to see a different culture that way. There definitely was a bit more spirit (in the 2010 Games) because it was in Canada,” Venditello says.
“Everything was pro-Olympics in Canada, so we saw a lot more of it, whereas now, when we just watch it on TV, we see the odd little things. With the winter sports, we see a lot of that because we are a country that [is very pro-winter sports]. We see hockey. We know all the players. We see snowboarding. We know the snowboarders, because it’s shown every week on TV in the winter,” says Venditello.
“We don’t see a lot of the judo competitions on day-to-day TV, so you’re not really caught up on it. We don’t really see it on TV on a regular basis, so we don’t get the (same) hype we get with hockey, snowboarding, and skiing.”
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