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SOCHI SCENE: Sochi or Southern California?

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 13, 2014 at 9:52 am •  Published: February 13, 2014
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KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia (AP) — Sunglasses, Sublime and sleeves missing everywhere. Is this Sochi or Southern California?

Feels more like a weekend at Mammoth Mountain than being in the mountains of Russia inland from the Black Sea.

And American fans were extra loud Thursday with the United States sweeping the medals in freestyle ski slopestyle, a far cry from consistent chants of "Ro-ssi-ya, Ro-ssi-ya" in Sochi's coastal cluster arenas.

Three quick things (beyond the red, white and blue flags) that distinguished Rosa Khutor Extreme Park from other Olympic venues on a day the Americans had their best showing at the Sochi Games so far:

— The playlist: Rage Against the Machine's "Bulls on Parade," Bob Marley's "Jammin'" and Sublime's "Santeria." The Western music selections elsewhere are pulled straight from the Billboard Hot 100, not from a playlist of eternal dorm room staples.

—The weather: The ground just below the park looks like a spring thaw. And in the stands, young women are wearing tank tops and reapplying sunblock, while some Canadian guys are cheering without shirts at all. Even Bobby Brown, the only American in the finals who didn't medal in slopestyle, took his two runs in a T-shirt: "You don't have to wear a jacket. It's always warm in Colorado in the spring so I love it. Makes me feel like I'm riding back home."

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