Image: Norwegian curling team
Robert F. Bukaty  /  AP
Haavard Vad Petersson of the Norwegian curling team gets set to deliver the stone during practice at the Vancouver Olympics. The diamond-patterned pants worn by the team have earned quite a following on Facebook.
By
updated 2/25/2010 3:53:18 PM ET 2010-02-25T20:53:18

The Norwegians' pants were pulled down. Briefly.

Not to worry, curling fans — they were back up after a 2½-hour scare.

A Facebook page dedicated to the funky, diamond-print pants worn by the Olympic men's curlers was mistakenly taken down Wednesday, making it temporarily inaccessible to its 435,000 followers.

Norway has become a sensation at the Vancouver Games as much for its pants as its strong performance on the ice. The Norwegians play in the semifinals Thursday against Switzerland.

Facebook initially sent a notice to Tony D'Orazio, who manages the page, saying it had violated the site's terms of use. He alerted the page's followers from his home in Rochester, N.Y.: "It is a sad day for the pants."

Outraged comments piled up before Facebook restored the page. A spokeswoman said it actually had not broken any of the social networking site's rules.

"Some technical issues rendered the page inaccessible for a short time this evening, but the Page is once again up and running," Facebook said in a statement to The Associated Press.

Otherwise, Norway's King Harald V himself might have had to step in. He received a pair of the pants from the curlers after watching their win over Britain on Tuesday and giving the team a pep talk.

Norway curler Christoffer Svae found the loud golf trousers after searching unsuccessfully for red ones for the Olympics.

D'Orazio, 37, is a curler himself who works in information technology for a plastics company. He said he was happy to have the problem fixed and was confused when Facebook first told him the site violated its terms of use.

"I had gotten support from everywhere," he said. "The Norwegian Curling Association actually invited me over to one of their tournaments next year, so that was a nice invitation. And Chris Svae's girlfriend, who said: 'The guys really appreciate the support. They're well aware of the group and I think they even joined in. Keep up the good work.'"

When D'Orazio started the page, he figured maybe 20 of his friends would sign up. He said he can't believe the popularity of the page now.

"In about 20 minutes I had about 200 fans and it grew very quickly from there. It's overwhelming a little bit," he said. "I'm not only a fan of the pants, but I'm also a curling fan. I've been called by a couple of people the undisputed No. 1 fan of Norwegian curling."

AP Sports Writer Joseph White and Associated Press Writer Lila Ibrahim contributed to this story in Vancouver.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Discuss:

Discussion comments

,

Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments