What? Beer drinking athletes? C'mon, Canadians play sports. Canadians drink beer. And Canadians win medals! Get over it.
During the Olympics all hell broke loose the night the Canadian women's hockey team took the gold medal in a match versus the USA. Not because they won. No. Because after the game, long after the fans had left, some of them snuck back out onto the ice to finish their dressing-room beers, smoke a cigar and engage in some personal picture-taking. But some sports writer - with a camera of his own - caught the moment for posterity and shared it with Associated Press for all the world to see. The women's hockey team is a class act. And who can blame them for celebrating such a significant accomplishment.
Canadian Jan Montgomery won a gold medal hurtling head first down a tube of ice in the men's skeleton event. Long after his win as he walked among the crowd, someone handed him a jug of beer. What would you do in such an event? Throw it to the ground? Of course not. Me, I'd probably do what he did in the moment. He drank half of it down. The next morning he told reporters: I don't subscribe to necessarily all the things typical athletes do. For me, a pint now and then is a good thing." Another class act.
Canada had many class acts among their 26 medals - the most ever among winter olympics hosting nations. And 14 gold - more than any other nation at the 2010 olympics.
I think, of course, of our first gold medal winner of the games, mogul skier Alex Bilodeau and every medal winner after that including bronze figure skater Joanne Rochette who's mother died only days earlier after arriving in Vancouver to watch her daughter skate.
I think, too, of Clara Hughes who won her sixth olympic medal - two summer games medals, 4 winter. Although it was a bronze, the speed skater hopped on the podium and jumped up and down as if it were a gold. A joy to watch.
There was a killer of a nail-biter men's hockey match between Canada and the United States that Canada won in overtime on Sidney Crosby's first goal of the tournament. Boy does he know when to let loose. Oh, yeah. President Obama and Prime Minister Harper had a bet on over who would win the game. The prize? Obama owes Harper a case of beer! No foolin'.
And finally, there was my favourite class act. On a foggy, rainy day on Cypress Mountain, Jasey Jay Anderson took the gold in the parallel giant slalom snowboard event. At the age of 35, Jasey had considered retiring before the Olympics, but the guy his young team mates call "the old man" decided he didn't want his tiny daughters to think he was a quitter. Good thing. Another class act.
The Canadian team down to every woman and man, medal winner or not, made Canada proud.
And I'll drink to that!