SOCHI, Russia – Many of America’s most prominent winter athletes will be competing in Sochi year, but unless you watch carefully, you might miss them altogether. That’s because several of them have decided to heed safety advice given by the State Department, and will be competing in the games disguised as “our less-hated neighbors to the north”—Canadians.
“It’s just the safe thing to do,” said Snowboarder Shaun White, who will be donning the Canadian uniform while representing the United States. “As much as it may sicken me to pretend to be Canadian, it’s slightly better than being killed by Russian terrorists.”
Ski Jumper Lindsey Van agreed with White, and said that she’s been taking “Canadian elocution lessons” and listening to Bryan Adams in preparation for her appearance at the games. “On top of performing athletically, we have to be actors this year,” Van admitted. “We have to blend in and become totally insignificant, which comes naturally to Canadians.”
The risk of terrorist attack on this year’s Olympic games—significant enough that the Defense Department has prepared to evacuate Americans from Sochi in the event of violence—has increased since it was reported that a female terrorist may be hiding out in Sochi. Olympians like Van and White are worried that “anybody who looks or sounds like an American will be first on the kill-list”—worries that have been encouraged by American officials.
Indeed, in a memo reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, the State Department advised American athletes not to wear Team USA gear outside the so-called “Ring of Steel,” a security perimeter maintained by Russian security forces. The memo argues that “wearing conspicuous Team USA clothing in non-accredited areas may put [American athletes’] personal safety at greater risk.”
Although the memo referred only to unsecured areas around the games, some athletes, including the entire Men’s Hockey Team, have decided to play it safe by abandoning their US garb altogether.
“It’s probably going to get pretty confusing if we play Canada in the finals,” noted forward Phil Kessel. “But just look for the team that isn’t playing like pansies—you’ll know that’s us.”
Other Olympians are modifying their entire lifestyle to better pull off the transformation from world-class athlete to Canadian. Figure Skater Jeremy Abbott plans on adhering to a poutine-based diet while in Russia. “Fries smothered in gravy may be unhealthy and disgusting,” Abbott said, “but it’s a necessary part of the ruse.”