Brandon Hicks - Sunday Feb. 16, 2014 15:55 ET

Sochi Olympics Week 1: What we’ve learned so far

Some small observations after a week of competition

Opening Ceremonies. Bears.
Sochi's Olympic mascots would be adorable if they didn't haunt your dreams at night. (Lionel Bonaventure - Pool/Getty Images)

Though the welcome mat may be nailed to the door and the doorknob itself is nowhere to be found, Sochi has indeed welcomed the world into its arms for the 2014 Olympic Games.

As we all hurtle into the second half of the Olympics like a bobsledder with Teflon runners, here’s what we’ve learned so far:

The most competitive event is “Escaping the Hotel”

American athlete Johnny Quinn is currently in the lead in this event with solid times in both the Bathroom…

…and Elevator portions of the competition.

Don’t wash your face

Just use vodka instead.

Cross-country skiing looks really, really fun

Just look at how much these athletes are enjoying their mid-race nap:

Sometimes Ashley Wagner doesn’t like her scores

Judging by this photo, anyway.

She also may have said something that rhymes with “full spit,” which coincidentally is another term that describes her reaction.

There’s a high-tech goalie transportation system

It’s implemented using several components, including “wheels,” “metal,” and “guy who didn’t expect to be doing this during the Olympics.”

Pay no attention to the building behind the curtain

So, the Sochi Cultural Center isn’t finished. That’s bad. To the delight of everyone, this was Russia’s solution:

If you’re deceived by the image, it’s actually a tarp painted to look like a building, hiding an unfinished building underneath. This is what technology can do in 2014.

Keep your eyes on the ground

Sochi sightseeing includes spontaneous tours of its brand-new sewer system (also likely covered in tarp).

There are some things that Putin DOES put on a shirt for

Like petting leopards.

And threatening figure skaters.

Never ever ever go to the bathroom

If you’re in Sochi, just hold it for two weeks. Or go in the woods off the cross-country course. If you are brave enough to actually go into the unsolvable paradox that is a Sochi bathroom, be prepared to deal with…

Questionable paper disposal systems:

Making friends at awkward moments:

And possibly an existential crisis (see bottom right):

Doubles luge is awkward, forever and always

Order off the menu at your own risk

Bet you wish you didn’t know what was in those cakes. But you do. And you still ate four of them.

Four out of five ain’t bad

Giant bears. A flying girl. Tretiak running a marathon. There were a lot of highlights during the opening ceremonies, but this is the one everyone gravitated towards.

Maybe that missing ring symbolizes something. But honestly, it’s (dogs/sexual tolerance/snow/running water/lightbulbs/the Sochi Community Center/uncreepy mascots/manhole covers/working toilets/appropriately-labelled cakes/functioning elevator doors) anyone’s guess.

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