Olympics Report: The Peaks

I don’t know if you’ve heard, but there’s an Olympics venue RIGHT HERE in Provo. It’s called The Peaks Ice Arena, and if you haven’t seen how lovely it is, you should definitely head downtown and look at it through a pair of binoculars from four blocks away, which is the closest you’re allowed to get.

The neighborhood around The Peaks is closed to all traffic. This is to prevent people from, I don’t know, going there. Olympic security is so tight, the only chance a troublemaker has of causing a ruckus and getting the world’s attention is if he or she is a French figure-skating judge. (Thank you! I’ll be here all week.)

So you can’t drive to The Peaks, but you can go inside, if you park at LaVell Edwards Stadium and take the shuttle bus over. Then you’re allowed to go inside and even purchase a $5 bottle of beer, if you so choose. In the great tented city of The Peaks, there are numerous places to buy beer. You may recall that this subject caused much consternation among Provoans when it was raised a couple years ago. Some people felt it was sending the wrong message for The Peaks to sell beer, since the majority of Utahns belong to a religion that prohibits attending a sporting event where other people besides you are drinking, or something like that.

People also got mad when it was announced that you couldn’t bring your gun to The Peaks. Apparently, Provoans would rather the guy next to them have a pistol in his hand than a beer.

Anyway, The Peaks got its beer permit, and now beer flows down the aisles like the canals of Venice. But if someone gets drunk and violent and all of the 30,000,000 uniformed security officers are unable to control him, you’ll have to just say your prayers and hope for the best, because you still can’t bring your gun. So there.

It’s worth not being able to pack heat, though, for the privilege of enjoying the Peaks atmosphere. It’s quite festive in there. On Tuesday, the BYU Jazz Legacy Dixieland band was performing (because when you think of hockey, you think of Dixieland), adding a “Mardi Gras” sort of feel, which makes sense, since Tuesday was Mardi Gras.

Food is for sale, too, and bank representatives are on hand to help you fill out the loan documents necessary to buy some.

There’s also a scary clown who makes balloon animals, although in fairness, he is probably just an ordinary clown, and it’s my own clown issues that cause me to attach the word “scary” to him.

Tickets are still available to some hockey matches at The Peaks. Take advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, if you like hockey. If you don’t like hockey, well, at least there’s beer.

The thing about how Provoans would rather the guy next to them have a gun than a beer was suggested to me anonymously in an "Ask Eric Stuff" question. So whoever that was, thanks. It was a good observation.

Did you know that if you follow a lame joke with, "Thank you! I'll be here all week," it pardons the bad joke? It's true.

This makes two columns in a row that mention clowns, in case you were scoring along at home.