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Jay Dreyer :: Torino? Turin? Huh?

Torino? Turin? Huh?

Olympic logo

The Winter Olympics are going on right now. I couldn’t care less, but my wife is a total junkie. Since NBC is showing it in HDTV glory, I’ve been sucked into watching a few things – primarily events that judges can’t screw up.

I’m not sure when I turned on the Olympics…I used to enjoy them but lately I almost dread them. Why? I’m not sure, but I think it’s the endlessly hyped up controversy, scandals and whining that have turned me off. I think the best examples of what I’m talking about are the pairs figure skating debacle and the Ohno speed skating thing-a-ma-bob where all of South Korea went into an uproar. Whatever.

If a judge isn’t involved then I might watch the event – luge is neat, so is the downhill, bobsled and hockey. The one where they ski and shoot stuff. That’s neat, too. Watching cross-country skiers just makes me tired. Ski jump is fun to watch, but judging is involved so I stay away. Skating pixies that cry after each round? Not for me.

Anyway, the whole point of this rambling post is to determine where these events are being held. You see, I’m confused here. I thought they were in Torino. That’s what this official looking site tells me. But when I scroll down the page, the same site that welcomes me to Torino gives me a historical recap by telling me about how the games were awarded to Turin in 1999:

Turin? Torino?

Even better, this paragraph can’t decide what to call the location:

More confusion!

I hopped on Google to try and solve this dilemma, but initially I didn’t have much luck. Dream of Italy tells me that “Torino” is Italian and “Turin” is…something else. They also tell me, by the way, that Turin (or Torino) “is hardly the Detroit of Italy.” Slammed from thousands of miles away! Damn!

Leave it to the good folks at National Geographic to put this issue to rest. It turins turns out that “Turin” is what the English speaking world has called “Torino” for years. The IOC normally uses the English version of the city name, but this time they relented to Italian pressure and switched it to Torino. I think Torino sounds better. I also think Detroit should have promoted the actual Michigan pronunciation of the city during the Super Bowl and used “San Diego”. Sounds more exotic, no?


| posted 02/14/2006 01:26 PM

Permanent link to this comment  Joe  on  02/14/2006 04:16 PM  said: 

I was sure this had to be NBC’s fault somehow.

Permanent link to this comment  Jay  on  02/14/2006 04:19 PM  said: 

Nahhh…when in doubt, blame the IOC. NBC did like the sound of Torino better than Turin, however. Other stations stuck with Turin. I just wish everyone would pick one and move on.

We can still blame Bob Costas if it makes you fell better. It makes me feel better.