Battlepanda: Ice Ice baby


Always trying to figure things out with the minimum of bullshit and the maximum of belligerence.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Ice Ice baby

Every four years, people all over the world come together in front of their televisions and briefly care about speed skating -- I was determined not to be among their number. That is, until I visited my friend Quyen and got sucked in by the Shani Davis-Chad Hedrick minivendetta. Yea, I am a malleable soul. Personally, I take Shani Davis' side. He has handled the media very badly, but I don't think he's a bad dude. I find Hedrick's way of keeping that rigid, toothy grin while he says bitchy things under his breath much more objectionable. Quyen puts it best: "Apparently, [Davis] is well-liked in the Netherlands, as is Joey Cheek, but the Dutch dislike Chad Hedrick (it's the "brash Texan" thing, I guess). And who would know speed skating better than the Dutch?" Who indeed.

I watched the skiing and bobsled-type events out of inertia, but I guess the other events I really followed are figure skating and ice dancing. Yes, I'm such a girl. Elaine of Culture of Life News correctly predicted the implosion of poor Sasha Cohen, and also have some very good analysis of what good skating is all about. Frankly, I can't tell a lutz from a salchow from a toe loop from a flip. I just like watching skating from a less technical and more of a "ooh! pretty..." point of view. I find it mildly disturbing that both the silver and bronze medalists in the most prestigious contest in the world of ladies figure skating fell on their butts during their important routine though. The winner, Shizuka Arakawa of Japan, was slightly disparaged by the commenters choosing a less difficult jump combination -- so? Ice skating is about aesthetics as well as athleticism, and it kinds of gets in the way of the ol' illusion of graceful ease when skaters are coming a cropper left and right.
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