While members of the International Olympic Committee are not going hungry, the days of their being profligately romanced by cities vying for the Games are gone. Since the Salt Lake City bribery scandals, the front runners for the 2008 games--Beijing, Toronto and Paris--are offering only subtle solicitations.
THEN Salt Lake City brought many IOC officials and their families to Utah. Some needed five trips to inspect facilities fully.
NOW Officials wanting to see Toronto can visit a display at the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, Switzerland. A pair of 3-D glasses reveals a photo of the city waterfront in all its glory.
THEN A Greek businessman associated with Athens' bid for the 1996 Olympics reportedly gave the (now ex-) wife of ioc member Phil Coles a gold necklace valued at $6,300.
NOW Beijing boosters offer pins, which cost a few cents to make.
THEN Officials from Brisbane, Australia, shipped lobsters and fresh fruit to East Berlin for a sumptuous $1.9 million lunch for IOC officials.
NOW Paris-bid officials took 18 ioc members to dinner at the Jules Verne restaurant, on the second floor of the Eiffel Tower, for an estimated tab of $1,600.