International mascot for the 2010 Winter Olympics, Quatchi, has his own website. This is no surprise since Olympic mascots are becoming a stronger part of the promotional arm of modern Olympics.
What is unique, is how much care and effort is made to infuse character and cuteness to Quatchi and his friends, Sumi and Miga. If you check out their site http://www.vancouver2010.com/mascots, as it begins to load Quatchi peaks around the corner, shy and blushing, and brave Miga has to convince him to step out and greet us.
Quatchi is getting great press too. Today in the MercuryNews.com compares Quatchi to Brad Pitt
The main mascot is Quatchi. He does not wear a hat, but rather a fetching set of baby-blue earmuffs. He is a young Sasquatch or Bigfoot, brown and fuzzy with that hairy unkempt look of Brad Pitt's beard.
All I know of the scruffy little guy (Quatchi, not Brad) is what I have learned on the official mascot Web site, www.vancouver2010.com/mascots. It seems he comes from the mysterious forests of Canada, and he is "shy, but loves to explore new places and meet new friends," a good thing in an international ambassador. His co-mascots are Miga, a snowboarding sea bear, and Sumi (the one with the hat), an animal spirit who lives in the mountains. Plus there's a tag-along marmot named Mukmuk, who is super cute but not an official part of the mascot team. Kind of like Cousin Oliver on "The Brady Bunch."
The Web site is adorable. When you run your cursor over the characters' cartoon images, they wave a friendly hello and say their respective names out loud. If you have access to the Internet, you simply must do this. Do it now. It's hilarious. Especially if you listen to Sumi and Miga with the cute high-pitched voices one might expect of talking stuffed animals, and then you move back to Quatchi, who has a deep, throaty, chain-smoking-sex-offender voice a la Moe Szyslak or a male Brenda Vaccaro. "Hi. I'm Quatchi. What are you wearing?" (OK, all he says is "Quatchi," but that's enough.)
Granted, it must have been tough to come up with a voice for Quatchi. I can image the Canadian mascot development committee sitting around conscientiously objecting to each other's opinions and saying things like, "Well, he's mythical, full of mystery and wonder. But also rugged and outdoorsy and a wee little hoser, eh?"
In other news it seems there are still openings for local Brittish Columbians to play the role of Quatchi at the torch relay. The job description reads.
Who Wants to be Quatchie?
Successful applicants would play the parts of Olympic mascots Quatchi, the earmuff-wearing sasquatch-like figure, and Miga, the petite black-and-white sea bear.
The ideal candidate for Quatchi would be between 5'10" and 6'2" tall, while someone posing as Miga should be between 5'1" and 5'4". Both must be 18 years or older.
Mascot performers should be reasonably fit and able to withstand the heat, weight and and other physical limitations of the costumes.
Definitely a guy in a suit.
Cutest Sasquatch Website Ever
Mercury Article "Give 'em Hill"
Who wants to be a Quatchi?
The largest Quatchi on the East Coast