This past weekend, after months of practice, preparation and grueling hours spent training, four countries came together to compete in beer Olympics. All teams showed up with a 30-rack of the best of the worst beer, intense focus, determination and a sufficient amount of national pride.
After setting up a few fold-up tables and plenty of red Solo cups, pep talks and team meetings – it was on to the games. The participating countries included Brazil, Cuba, Italy and Canada, made up of none other than some of the staff of your favorite newspaper.
Chris Sacco, Opinion Editor, argues for Team Cuba; Sten Spinella, Senior Staff Writer, tries to make a name for Team Italy; Marissa Piccolo, Associate Opinion Editor, says “sorry” for Team Canada and Dan Madigan, Sports Editor, makes a convincing case for Team Brazil:
Chris Sacco: It was a day that will not soon be forgotten. Journalism icon and famed lover of intoxicants, Hunter S. Thompson famously said, “Good people drink good beer.” On Team Cuba, we not only had good people, but also had what one might call, after the fourth or fifth, ‘good’ beer. Though the results have been hotly contested, it was clear that, with a 3-1 record, Cuba came out on top. I can’t claim full responsibility, but wearing a full-size Cuban flag as a cape certainly distracted the competition. Before Fidel and co. took over Cuba in 1959, the island’s life stream came not only from cigars, glitzy casinos and the beach-bum lifestyle, but also from the glory of Bacardi. We kept that legacy alive by crushing Team Brazil, Canada and Italy, only losing once. Though Team Italy has tried to claim victory through unsavory statistical trickery, at the end of the day, it was a clear Cuban victory. Cuba libre! (History will only remember the Cuban account, as history is written by the victors.)
Sten Spinella: Representing Italy - which was a team of designers, copy editors, digital editors and news writers - we went 3-3 (1-3 in beer pong, 2-0 in beer ball). Leave it to the opinion editor to completely misconstrue an event that didn’t go exactly his way. I will not dispute the fact that Cuba had a rock-solid start to the festivities, and that, percentage-wise, they had a better record than Italy. But to become too complacent to continue playing is a crime on its own account, one that should have resulted in disqualification. It’s only fair that this beer Olympics be labeled a fluke. Props to Canada for drinking Canadian beer, but they had like six players. Italy had three. Brazil consisted of two couples, which was cute, but Italy’s passion and determination to triumph was unmatched. Yo, Cuba: We’re over Communism you should probably get over your misguided political system, too. I would not be surprised if this “round table” became a column on why Cuba is superior to all other countries, given the country’s propensity to silence its press.
Marissa Piccolo: Team Canada came into Beer Olympics with much momentum, especially considering it was the day following the release of Canada-native Drake’s new album. Team Canada fell second to Cuba in a heartbreaking finish in the first round’s beer pong championship; however, we figured we would take it, eh. Shortly afterwards, Team Canada notably made the ultimate power move and ordered pizza. When the delivery person came and the other teams saw it arrive, all we could say was “sorry.” As much as we enjoyed our super authentic Canadian beer, we had to pour one out for our late Toronto Mayor Rob Ford - may he rest in peace. We may not have come as close in the other contests, but we were satisfied knowing he, Justin Bieber, Ryan Gosling and Alex Trebek were on our side at the end of the night - not to mention our handsome Prime Minister. Overall, Canada did Beer Olympics right, from our point of “Views.”
Dan Madigan: Checking in from Team Brazil - the only team other than Cuba that can make an argument for the top spot. While Brazil never came out on top in any event, it boasted a 2-1 record in beer pong and a 1-1 record in beer ball, with the loss coming in a tightly contested match with Team Italy. What may have given Brazil the edge was the team uniforms consisting of a green shirt and a slightly accurate Brazil flag on the chest. Don’t let Cuba fool you, Brazil gave them all they could handle, losing the only game between the two countries in beer pong but came out victorious in the beer ball matchup. A rematch between the two would be one for the ages.