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Who cares if Kerrin Lee-Gartner won a gold medal, but can she croon?

Fourth-Place Medal

Wait until Kerrin Lee-Gartner hears about this.

As a follow-up to Friday's post about the Olympic torch relay, comes word that that organizers found a spot on the final day of the relay for, wait, Dal Richards, who, thank goodness for quick copying-and-pasting, is, "B.C.'s 92-year-old big band legend." That means who is below age 75 and east of the Rocky Mountains has ever heard of him, but back in the day he was part of a boys' band that won, "top honours among competitors across North America at the 1933 world's fair in Chicago" and he played with Bing Crosby, whose likeness you might remember being used after his death to sell vacuum cleaners on TV 20 years ago.

Really, that is so much more pertinent to the 2010 Olympics than Lee-Gartner being the only Canadian, female or male, to have won a gold medal in the demanding Olympic downhill.

Nothing against Dal Richards. Apparently, he is world-famous all over British Columbia's Lower Mainland. Surely he'll arry this off with a dignity and enthusiasm beyond some men about, oh, 60 or so years his junior.

There's a quote in the above-linked article that this is "a great way for the city to say thanks to him and it's a great way for him to say thanks to the world," but is it really an appropriate to include a local celebrity who knew a lot of famous dead people, while Kerrin Lee-Gartner gets snubbed? That's a column worth writing for some of the traditional-media folk.

The one step farther is this is typical of self-involved Vancouver, celebrating its own at the expense of developing broader perspective. That's a polite way of getting around calling them rubes. You know how Canucks fans think Trevor Linden had a better NHL career than Mark Messier? Now it all makes sense.

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