Chicago’s Olympic Bid and Italian Chicken Soup

Picasso Sculpture in Daley Plaza with Olympic Laurel and Metal

Picasso Sculpture in Daley Plaza with Laurel Wreath and Olympic Metal

Friday, October 2, 2009 in Chicago started out rainy, chilly, and cloudy, but the radio announcers, TV stations, and populous were excited and psyched. All week, beginning with all-night talk shows until early hours, reminding us the votes of the Olympic Committee would be in by 11 AM. We will know by noon!

Chicago 2016 Flag

Chicago 2016 Flag

There was a rally at Daley Plaza to celebrate and cheer-on Chicago’s bid to host the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games. I went.

Even the Picasso Sculpture was decked with a laurel band across its head and an inflatable Olympic metal hanging around its neck. The bands played, cameras clicked, crowds cheered, wearing Let Friendship Shine 10.02.09 give-away-orange-tee-shirts, waving flags with the Olympic symbol Chicago Candidate 2016, banners, spotlights, microphones, TV commentators, families, students, Chicagoans, tourists, suburbanites, entertainers, and politicians.

The b. Here's

The b. Here Boys

The diversity of Chicago as an American city showed in the mixed reactions and opinions of the ever-vocal Chicagoans revolving around Chicago’s bid.

  • Committed Chicagoans— companies, workers, and volunteers, who carried the dream. People who worked hard and long on Chicago’s bid.
  • Ambivalent Chicagoans— not against, not enthused—willing to wait and watch.
  • Against the bid— the people who feel the city needs to take care of itself first. Chicagoans who felt overtaxed, and knew hosting the games would increase taxpayer debt.
  • And every attitude in-between.

But the people at Daley Plaza when the early announcement was made were stunned.

Chicagoan Stunned by the Anouncement

Chicagoan Stunned by the Announcement

What Happened? How?

What Happened? How?

The shock and disappointment of Chicagoans was deepened by our elimination in the first vote.

People stood in disbelief.

Some cried.

Some said, Maybe next year… like the CUBS!

Disappointed Crowd is Silent

Disappointed Crowd is Silent

A gloomy day got colder and gloomier. The camera crews and newsmen were packing up, crowds ready-to-party started disbursing for pity-parties. An emotional eater, I wanted to go home and make Chicken Soup.

As I rode the 151 Bus home I thought about why?

The newspapers and blogs are full of the reasons. But…

When choosing locations for the Olympic Games, the IOC specifically gives the honor of holding the Games to a city rather than a country.

I checked on the cities. And was surprised by the stats.

International Flags Flank the Stage

International Flags Flank the Stage On a Bad Hair Day

A South American city has never hosted the Olympic Games.

London, United Kingdom; 1908, 1948, and will host the Olympics the third time in 2012.

Athens, Greece; the modern originator hosted the first time in 1896, again in 1956.

Paris, France; hosted in 1900, and again in 1924.

Los Angeles, United States of America; hosted in 1932, 1984.

St. Louis in 1904, and Atlanta in 1996, United States of America; have also hosted the games.

The winner, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, is a spectacular city in South America!

“The world has recognized that the time has come for Brazil.” Said President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, the country’s first working-class leader, as he wept tears of joy after the announcement they won the bid.

“Canadian Olympic Committee president Chris Rudge, noted that sport still trumps everything else at the Olympics, and pointed to Brazil drafting legendary soccer player Pele for its bid.”  “Brazil had Pele. People forget that.” The Vancouver Sun.

But for me, the most impressive thing I read was the Olympic Creed itself.

The Olympic Creed reads: “The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part, just as the most important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle. The essential thing is not to have conquered but to have fought well.”

Chicago, you took part, had the struggle, fought well, and with heart…

Now about that Rich Italian Chicken Soup.

Italian Chicken Soup With Parmigiano Cheese

Rich Italian Chicken Soup With Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese Shavings

The recipe for Rich Italian Chicken Soup is posted on Blog Bursts .


2 thoughts on “Chicago’s Olympic Bid and Italian Chicken Soup

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