Read the bizarre Olympic Committee demands that led Oslo to pull out of the 2022 hosting race

Oslo wanted to host the 2022 Winter Games, but has decided against it because of the International Olympic Committee's demands for special treatment. The IOC's imperial arrogance and opulence would be amusing—were it not the tip of an iceberg of corruption and despotism that floats from city to city every two years.

• They demand to meet the king prior to the opening ceremony. Afterwards, there shall be a cocktail reception. Drinks shall be paid for by the Royal Palace or the local organizing committee.

• Separate lanes should be created on all roads where IOC members will travel, which are not to be used by regular people or public transportation.

• A welcome greeting from the local Olympic boss and the hotel manager should be presented in IOC members' rooms, along with fruit and cakes of the season. (Seasonal fruit in Oslo in February is a challenge ...)

• The hotel bar at their hotel should extend its hours “extra late” and the minibars must stock Coke products.

• The IOC president shall be welcomed ceremoniously on the runway when he arrives.

• The IOC members should have separate entrances and exits to and from the airport.

• During the opening and closing ceremonies a fully stocked bar shall be available. During competition days, wine and beer will do at the stadium lounge.

• IOC members shall be greeted with a smile when arriving at their hotel.

• Meeting rooms shall be kept at exactly 20 degrees Celsius at all times.

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Rumor: Olympic opening ceremony to have Mary Poppins fighting Voldemort

Caity Weaver on the plans for London's Olympic opening ceremony:

Before 40-foot-Voldemort appears, "about 100" children will be wheeled out on hospital beds to perform "a choreographed 'bed dance,'" which sounds quite sexy but probably is not. To these one hundredish beds will be added a dozen more "giant" ones, on which will dance/frolic/be such beloved storybook characters as The One Hundred and One Dalmatians' dog-skinning villain Cruella de Vil. Then and only then will 40-foot-Voldemort himself arrive, rising up from yet another giant bed in the middle of the stadium. To recap: All the action to this point has taken place in some sort of bed.

What annoys me out about these games isn't the militarized security or crazy brand-protection laws, which were predictable. It's the pervasive amateurism of the creative work. From the "Blowjob Lisa" logo to the "Amiga-era 3D Modeling Tutorial" mascots to the "Duct tape lettering on dollar store window" typeface, we now progress--allegedly!--to a battle of the brands fought under exclusive license from Warner Bros. and Disney.

Inane surrealism is what you get when there is no heart, no vision, and no story to tell.

Update: Never mind! It was mostly cool. Read the rest