I got my hands on a piece of Winter Olympic iron this afternoon in the form of a silver medal, and I'm happy to report that it's got some definite heft to it, roughly the equivalent to the mass of a meaty grapefruit. (I would have been disillusioned if it hadn't.)
The encounter happened while riding down an escalator with Team USA slopestyle skier Devin Logan, who took silver in Tuesday's first-ever Olympic slopestyle competition in the mountains above Sochi.
"Just drop it in my hand," I pleaded. "Just for a sec."
Logan, who still looked punch drunk from her win, was shoveling french fries into her mouth. But she seemed happy to comply and pulled it out of her pocket, then plunked it down into my awaiting hand.
"It still feels like a dream," she said in between chews. "Like a dream come true. Words can't describe it. When they put it around my neck, I didn't think it was real. I kept thinking they were going to take it away from me."
Which I realized was probably my cue to hand it back to her.
"Thanks," she said, squeezing it hard, then shoving it into the pocket of her jacket and disappearing into the Sochi night.
Tune into NBC tonight for more Olympic action, and check back with PEOPLE.com for spoiler-free coverage and more of Johnny's dispatches from the Games.
Credit Johnny Dodd