Tuesday, February 14, 2006

She's still younger than Bob Costas

Hey, all you 25 year-olds out there: guess what? You're OLD! That is, according to Bob Costas. In his retrospective on U.S. figure skater, Michelle Kwan, Costas opened by asking, "when did Michelle Kwan get old?" Kwan was born in July, 1980, about two months after me, which makes me officially old.

This had to be the most insulting and awful retrospective I've ever seen. I couldn't figure out why they would cast such a bitter light on her- as the gracious, athletic, elegant and most decorated woman in the history of figure skating, she restored the sport's badly tarnished image. Remember how bad we all felt for Nancy Kerrigan when she got whacked? And then she turned out to be a snarky bitch? Michelle Kwan never gave us any of that- she just gave us jump after perfect jump. Now in the face of defeat- not by a competitor, but painfully, by her own body- NBC smacked her with a snide and implicitly insulting retrospective.

Why would NBC be so harsh on Kwan? Where would the Olympics be without Michelle Kwan? U.S. Olympic Chairman Peter Ueberroth's statement, "Michelle Kwan means more to the United States Olympic Committee than maybe any athlete that's ever performed for the United States Olympic Committee," contained only a small amount of hyperbole. Ice skating draws the largest ratings for the Olympics, and after the scandals with Tony and Nancy, the Olympics desperately needed a new heroine, a role which Kwan handily filled.

Hours after Kwan's withdrawal, NBC offered her a position as a commentator, opportunistically trying to save the ratings that will inevitably fall following Kwan's exit. In a final show of grace, Kwan declined, saying that she didn't want to distract from the actual skating. Ironically, a few hours later, NBC aired its awful retrospective, lacking the one quality that has marked Kwan's career: grace.


Blogger Karinanne said...

Sorry to hear that you are now OLD.....especially since that means I should be practically dead then.

7:43 PM  
Blogger The Bird said...

"...after the scandals with Tony and Nancy, the Olympics desperately needed a new heroine..."

What, is Chachi figure skating now?

8:54 PM  
Anonymous GQ said...

Dude I'm old! You think I have a chance of hooking up with Kwan after shuffleboard at the home then?

9:51 AM  

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