[FYI- this works backwards, so read from the bottom then back up, if you’d like. I intend to insta-blog again for Men’s Freeskate on Thursday night…I’ll sign in as soon as I get home from the rink!]
Shen and Zhao: Well, tanked on a lift, but did lots of high ticket elements late in the program. AND: did a old -school pull-through, but into a lift! Fourth Olympics. Five points ahead after Short. First Place.
NBC didn’t even show or mention the American’s final placements (10th and 13th). But I agree with Dick Button for once: “It was a wonderful evening.” Lots of strong skating and no disastrous falls. Phew!
Kavaguti and Smirnov: I am uncomfortable watching women this thin on the ice. I felt the same way about Sasha Cohen this year. (I am also uncomfortable commenting on other people’s weight, but I fear for their safety and health and fear for young girls they might influence.) (Well, honestly, I fear for these pair girls at any weight.) (But this is just my paranoia.)
Savchenko and Szolkowy: Love Out of Africa. Thumbs up on the spread eagles into the Throw Triple Sal. Likewise for the Spread Eagle/Plank-ish ending to that lift. (Wish the commentators would tell us the name of some of these newer lift positions/ and lift exits. If they need help coming up with names, I volunteer my services.)
Pang and Tong: Woooo hooooo! Only team that prompted me to applaud here from the futon. They’re like ice dancers. Gorgeous. Notice, when he throws her, how much air he takes, himself.
One more to go…
11:15 Time for tonight’s serving of pretzels. And to wonder who on earth named it a “death spiral.” It’s probably the least scary and dangerous of all the elements we are seeing tonight.
My little friend Wiki tells me Potopopovs attempted to change it up in the 60’s, calling the Back Inside a “Cosmic Spiral,” the Forward Inside a “Life Spiral” and the (all too rare) Forward Outside, a “Love Spiral.” I think any one of these would be better than the current name. What do you think? Leave a comment below if so inclined.
10:55 Zhang and Zhang: That fall on his elbows did not look fun. The Hubs gives a thumbs up to their ending position, though.
On Sheherazade: it is a beautiful piece of music, but can we take a break from it? Maybe just take this and Phantom of the Opera and put them in the vault for a while? Maybe just a few decades. In fact, a lot of this music is tired.
On typing while trying to watch the TV screen: challenging.
Mukhortova and Tarankov: The Hubs admits that this is the most he has ever watched any Olympics and any sporting event, period. He says: “Is it a new thing that the guys are wearing such normal outfits? He looks like he just got off his shift at the Banana Republic.” Yes, it is a new thing – seems like lots of teams are following in the footsteps of Sale and Pelletier. ( I believe this is their same music.)
Dube/Davison: “And this guy is from the Gap! That’s just a long sleeve T-shirt and Dockers!” (…maybe I’ll get him in figure skates, yet!)
I’m sad D/D didn’t have a better skate. Was rooting for them ever since the camel spin accident. Can’t imagine doing another one after that and the PTSD she must have had. She looks awesome, though. Still wondering why their scores are so high…? Perhaps my local technical specialist will enlighten? Or perhaps he is asleep, preparing for an early-morning skate.
Also wondering why all the Death Spirals look so slow – possibly because they are trying to hold them for so long.
10:31 Bazarova and Larianov. I dig the one-sided collar. The Russian Jackets are cool. Is it true that they are required to put them on in the Kiss and Cry for promotional purposes?
The back story on Yao Bin: inspiring or heartbreaking? Both, I suppose.
The Hubs on Langlois and Hays: “She’s so little.” Yup, that’s one of the main requirements of a girl pair skater. Liliputian. That, and nerves of steel. Not to mention biceps of steel.
10:03 Evora and Ladwig just skated. Mark is to be commended on his spirals. He is doing his species proud.
Bezic: (approximate quote) “Evora and Ladwig have been together for eight years and never been on the podium at Nationals [dramatic pause] until this year.” I am a sucker for this kind of stuff.
Enormous Throw Triple Loop. And their One handed Reverse Lasso etc etc etc lift: excellent.
Notice how Costas and Co. are suddenly pushing the “personal best” notion since, in this case, the Americans are nowhere near medal contention. I approve and request more of the same. The constant focus on medals is tiresome. (Thank heaven Canada finally got a gold on their home turf – the commentators can now stop harping on this.) I like that the rink announcer is mentioning when the scores are a team’s personal best. This does bring some perspective and context. Then again, every event has different judges and different callers…
9:25 Okay! Just got home from the rink two hours later than expected – dead battery in the parking lot, got a jump, tossed up a salad, now ready to see the skaters jump….
Denney and Barrett just punched in a great, redemptive Freeskate. Bravo! Impressive for being together only 18 months.
The above clipart and in fact this entire insta-blog is dedicated to all previous, current, and future pair skating women. I have an insane amount of respect for you.
To be continued…and in the mean time, check out this humor piece about the Olympics: