Postcard from SALT LAKE CITY


To those trying to bring the 2012 Summer Games to Baltimore-Washington: If you win, immediately lower expectations.

Organizers in Nagano in 1998 and Sydney in 2000 begged for their games to not be compared with their immediate predecessors. And the head of these Winter Games, Mitt Romney, protested that it would be "unfair" to compare his wing-ding to what the folks Down Under produced.

Monday night, talking about Turino's efforts to prepare for 2006, Franco Frattini, the Italian minister of public works, said that while "Salt Lake is a great example for us, we do not want to be compared to the excellent job they have done."

The only place to go is down.

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