In an effort to increase popularity and regain goodwill with the public, the Sochi Olympic committee has unveiled a new kid-friendly mascot for the 2014 Winter Games, which so far have been notable for their lack of basic amenities and housing for media and athletes. Named “Vladi,” the mascot is only 75 percent complete, though officials hope that they can finish making the mascot’s costume before Friday’s opening ceremonies.
The Sochi committee has expressed hope that this new fun, engaging mascot will help take some of the focus away from the numerous media articles addressing incomplete hotels, huge oversights, and a general mix of corruption and incompetence that has so far marred the winter games. However, many feel that the move might have been shortsighted, considering that the incomplete mascot has been wandering around town confusing athletes, spectators, and the media alike.
When completed, Vladi will be an adorable stray dog with a charming back story. Currently, however, it is hard to ascertain what animal he is exactly, since his designers have yet to complete his head or arms. Many children have reported being “terrified” of the incomplete mascot, with some calling it a “monstrosity” while others complaining that, without even a basic mask or face covering, the drunk, angry Russian man hired to wear the costume has been wandering around the Olympic village with random tufts of fur attached to his body and swearing loudly in multiple languages.
When completed, Vladi will have to sleep on the floor of a locker room, as construction on his hotel room isn’t expected to be completed for several weeks.