Tuesday, January 13, 2004

KWAN RULES: I am late in mentioning this, but here's Eric pointing out Missy Schwartz's mention of Michelle Kwan winning her nearly-unprecedented 8th National Championship. I added my usual obnoxious figure skating comments at Missy's post:

Kwan skated her butt off at that thing and completely blew away the competition. It helped that everyone else had a Level 9 gag job. How did Sasha get a 6.0 on a performance where she not only fell, but fell u-g-l-y?

If Michelle sticks around until Turin and competes well, even if she doesn't win the gold she still redefines what it means to be a great skater. We are hopefully moving away from the era of adolescent screaming pixies who win gold and drop out/get pregnant/go to Ivy League school, and into the era of skating as an Actual Competitive Sport with Actual Competitive Athletes. And Kwan will be the first of her kind.

Mmmm, recycled content. It's always better the second time.

Kwan's the five-star athlete I have no problem rooting for--for the obvious dirty pervert reasons, no doubt, but also because of her natural, apparently unforced enthusiasm for the sport. The goofy smile she had when she got past the hard parts of her program. She's not the Michael Jordan of figure skating--Jordan didn't draw as much pleasure from playing as from humiliating his enemies. She's more like the Brett Favre of figure skating, just out there enjoying herself and blessed with the talent to compete at the highest level.

Yes, Sasha getting a 6.0 on a program she fell about as badly as she could on is pathetic. I can't wait for the new judging system to go into effect in this country; this opinion-based scoring has been keeping the sport at joke level.

And Ann Patrice McDonough's performance was actually painful to watch. The skating dorks at Goldenskate think she's the victim of a skating mom. I hope so--she looked like she's rather be anywhere but out there. And then she was laughing at the kiss & cry, not the actions of someone whose competitive aspirations had been crushed.

No comments: