There apparently is little reason to worry that the 2002 Winter Games will be cancelled because of terrorism. And to prove it, Gov. Mike Leavitt has absolutely no contingency plan, he told an army of reporters recently.
Reporters from all over the nation and globe were in Utah for the so-called “Olympic Media Summit.” When the questions turned to terrorism, the governor proudly proclaimed that Utah is more prepared than any place on the planet. The problem came when Gov. Mike couldn’t answer specific questions on whether there are enough antibiotics to go around in the event of an anthrax outbreak or how much of the Games security budget would be dedicated to preventing terrorist attacks. Details better left to someone else, no doubt.
• Not to bring up bad memories or anything, but remember the Great Salt Lake Olympic scandal? Well, it’s unofficially over. The prosecutors and investigators who were working the case have been called back to Washington, D.C., to focus on the terrorist attacks, subsequent investigations and perhaps eventual prosecutions. In our new war against terrorism, so far the only clear winners are California Congressman Gary Condit and Salt Lake (Olympic) Bid Committee warriors Tom Welch and Dave Johnson.
• Speaking of bad memories, we can thank the Salt Lake Tribune for splashing former Mayor Deedee Corradini’s beautiful mug on the front page of the paper’s local section—again. The Deedster, according to their story, will be running the Olympic torch. In the piece, Deedee claimed—for the first time in a long time—responsibility for bringing the Games to Utah. Apparently now that the scandal is over, it’s OK to be responsible again. There was, however, no mention of the Bonneville Pacific fraud in which she was entangled or her Giftgate scandal, where she shook down business leaders for her own personal gain by using her mayoral office. It may well be apropos that Deedee is running the torch, because in many ways she is symbolic of the modern Olympic Games.
• Unlike Corradini, gold medal downhill racer Picabo Street says after the 2002 season, she will leave Utah for good and will even change her name so she can’t be found. Sure, it sounds like something out of a B movie, but Picabo says she is serious about leaving Park City for an unknown location west of the Tetons and will seek anonymity with a name change. Unconfirmed reports say her mailbox will read Margaret McMullen. Hey wait a minute, isn’t that Deedee Corradini’s real name?
Can’t you just hear the Twilight Zone music?
• And finally this: Security is so tight on Bob Dylan’s current tour that the Tambourine Man, himself, was stopped by security guards from going backstage when he couldn’t produce a pass. The young guards in Medford, Ore., apparently didn’t recognize the little 60-year-old guy with wiry hair (who now sports a pencil-thin mustache) as rock’s biggest icon. The times they are a changin’.