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Denny's Daily Zinger: Sochi's Customer Care Catastrophe

February 10, 2014 By Denny Hatch
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Although Peggy spent 20 years as an official in world curling, we opted out of Sochi. Good thing. Why?

  • Expensive: Sochi cost many Americans $7,000 to $14,000 pp per week.

Russia's Paranoia
We were in Moscow for a curling event two years ago. Virtually no one spoke English. Signs were in Cyrillic script. An inveterate American traveler called Russia the most unfriendly tourist venue he had ever visited.

Okay, Russia's paranoia is logical. Ten million Russian military were killed in the war, along with 10 million civilians.

The Jimmy Carter Hobgoblin
A small ugly creature in children's stories who harms or tricks people.Macmillan Dictionary

 In 1979, the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan. As retribution, President Jimmy Carter (D-GA) called for the boycott of the 1980 summer Olympics, with 65 countries participating in the boycott. The dreams of American athletes were trashed by a politically motivated Georgia peanut farmer.

At the time, Russia was truly nasty. All hotel rooms for foreigners were bugged. Guards were on every hotel floor. When a foreign tourist left the room, it was searched.

Restaurants routinely ran out of food. Russian help were sullen.

Had gazillion athletes, groupies and media descended on Moscow in 1980, the place would have imploded. The Russian bear would have been exposed as a paper tiger.

By boycotting the Olympics, I believe Jimmy Carter prolonged the Cold War by 10 years.

And the current Sochi silliness never would have happened.

Denny Hatch is the author of six books on marketing and four novels, and is a direct marketing writer, designer and consultant. His next book will be "Write Everything Right!" Visit him at or contact him at



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