"Is Sweden any different from the Netherlands?"
That question keeps coming back, but with the olympic games well underway, it just got an extra dimension.
The Dutch really are one-trick-ponies when it comes to the winter olympics: speed skating. That is about it. The Dutch have over 80 medals, but only 3 (!) were won on some other discipline (figure skating to be exact). The Canadians might have waited for the first gold medal on home soil; I am waiting for the first medal of any kind on something with a ski instead of small pieces of iron.
However, this creates expectations; if we do not win any gold, the cabinet will collapse... uhr, maybe that will still happen while we win a gold medal, but the media will be screaming for an explanation. The people will not be so kind ;-)
Now Sweden... turns out, they are more diverse in their winter specialities, how odd :-P. But the only skating which really gets their attention is ice hockey. But ice hockey is just one-dimensional: men and women. Cross-country skiing really is the speed skating of Sweden. They are very good at it and must always be mindful of the Germans, sounds just like ladies speed skating :-P
But I must say I have enjoyed watching the Swedish skiing competitors (cross-country, biathlon and alpine) so far. They are a lively bunch and I will never forget the giddy Charlotte Kalla wobbling on her chair in the SVT Whistler studio after winning gold.
But that reminded me Sweden is not so different: the commentators, the interviewers and the presenters all have their Dutch "counterparts" or have the same role. When Björn Ferry won the gold, the commentators sounded just like the Dutch commentators when Mark Tuitert and Ireen Wüst took their unexpected gold medals.