GYMN-L Digest - 25 Jul 1996 - Special issue
There are 18 messages totalling 615 lines in this issue.
Topics in this special issue:
1. Tesh, NBC, & Hooking in New Fans
2. GO DOMINIQUE DAWES!!
4. Gymnast dolls...
5. Strug & WAG
6. The hype potential/The Crowd Factor
7. Poor Kerri
9. At The Olympics, Day 7
10. usa men
11. Tousek's 1st 2 results & Amanar replaces Marinescu
12. John Tesh -- he is a sportsman!
13. Olympic gymnastics
14. Tape Requests
15. gym list
16. O: WAG: AA Results
17. MENS CHINESE TEAM
18. NBC coverage
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 13:32:38 -0700
Subject: Tesh, NBC, & Hooking in New Fans
I appreciate (very much!) that gymnastics are getting much more coverage
than in years past. As a longtime fan, it's very gratifying and I have to
admit that I enjoy being able to answer questions from people at work
during the competition :-)
We've discussed here how Tesh can serve as a kind of medium for the newer
fans of the sport, as he doesn't get wrapped up in technical talk, and his
focus on the personal side of the sport can help viewers feel more a part
of the whole thing as it happens.
In broadcasts of figure skating, the network often shows short segments
explaining some of the types of jumps and required elements. Some
well-known skater is always featured, demonstrating said elements, and
there are some uncomplicated little arrows and diagrams helping to
illustrate the moves.
Why not do this with gymnastics next time, NBC? Some of the repetitive
fluff pieces about the the gymnasts' stories could easily be replaced with
more information about the sport itself. These aren't half hour segments,
we're talking three or five minutes here and there - focusing on one or two
specific elements. This is a great opportunity to show clips from the past
of the gymnasts performing moves named for them, another way to hook in the
Just my thoughts, back to lurking :-)
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 21:21:13 GMT
Subject: GO DOMINIQUE DAWES!!
Seeing as no one has picked up on this woman's prospects for an
all-around medal, I'd just like to point out that she had an optional score
of 39.187. That score, if she were to achieve that in the AA, would
definitely give her a great shot at a medal...any colour. She might even be
able to improve on that score. GO DOMINIQUE DAWES!!
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 16:41:00 EDT
Misutin wasn't in more than 2 or 3 events in the team competition, if I
remember correctly. Hard to believe, huh?
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 16:52:00 EDT
Subject: Gymnast dolls...
Just saw a commercial for "Gymnast Stacie and her friends" which I guess
is in the Barbie lines. Has anyone else seen this! I got a huge laugh
out of it...
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 17:23:39 -0400
Subject: Strug & WAG
In the USA today, there were several US gymn articles - but two caught my
eye. One was a nicely written article explaining why the US coaches
didn't know the scores - that the russians were still on fx. they also
tried to expain to the average viewer that in gymn you can't take a
timeout, that strug had 30 seconds to do the vault once the green light
went on. They also explained the vaults and the scoring, and why and how
dominique moceanu replaced strug in the AA.
another article talked about shannon miller and how there was
controversey over her optional vault - that two of her scores were
lowered - the head judge though they were too high - this kept her from
the EF in Vault...suprisingly she only qualified for beam - too bad :(
on a personal note - i really hope NBC shows khorkina, pods, kotchekova,
and milo, and not show simply the americans.
also - where did onodi place???
is there any sites that have extensive coverage?
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 17:33:26 -0400
Subject: Re: The hype potential/The Crowd Factor
>>Do people think the Womens Team Gold/Kerri Strug story is going to be
>>gymnastics Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan? By that I mean do you think this is
>>going to create a greater interest and larger audience for gymnastics in
>>non-Olympic years, or is it all just going to blow over? Could we see Worlds
>>live in prime time, scores of exhibitions on TV? I think its admirable that a
>>lot of the U.S team wants to go to college this fall, but think of what they
>>could do for the popularity of gymnastics if they toured for a year and rode
>>the popularity wave.
I personally see the Kerri Strug part of your question as more of a 'Dan
Jansen'-type story, as opposed to a Kerrigan/Harding story. Kerri is on every
channel of the TV here in the US. She did interviews on CNN Talkback Live, saw
clips of her on ESPN, Today Show, etc., and I envision that whether she competes
any more or not in these Games, that she will be the 'inspiration' story, not
the 'gymnastics is evil' story.
I see a Wheaties box in her future. Dan Jansen, one of the most heartwrenching,
tear-jerking stories of *any* Games, I believe, has managed to make public
appearances and do Wheaties boxes and still remain a classy guy. This is what I
envision for Kerri. She is and has always been classy.
As for the Women's Team Gold story, well, I am somewhat in agreement with the
poster to this list (sorry I deleted your name:( ) who said that, while
American and indeed Olympic history was made in the US Women's first-ever
Olympic defeat of the mighty Soviet machine, that complaining about and bashing
the crowd seemed the more prevalent topic on this list. This is a time we have
all been waiting for for *so* long, and we're fighting on the list! The
sentiments that the perhaps overly enthusiastic crowd somehow 'tainted' these
Women's victory. That perhaps the best team we have *ever* assembled did not
really win the title, it was that the crowd itself who 'defeated' the other
competitors. Heck, I felt kinda sorry for them, and I didn't even get to see
them (NBC...). I felt sorry for Milo when she was waiting to start her FX and
missed the cue because she didn't hear it over the cheers for Dom's BB!
But one question for you all: Have you ever competed (in any sport) in an
opposing team's turf? I certainly have, as a gymnast, a diver, a softball
player, a cheerleader, and a dancer (in competitions). I also do some acting,
too. It stinks to be the visiting team, but someone always has to. This is why
it's called 'home team advantage.' The home crowd cheers for the home team.
But this time, the *best US team ever* was the hometeam. It must have been
magic there! It seems like all the planets lined up at the right time Tuesday
nite, and that all the women hit (with minor exceptions of Jaycie's comp BB and
Moceanu's optional V) like *never* before!!! These women have made history, and
I am sorry for the others they they did not have the home crowd advantage, I am
sorry the home crowd was watching it's home team's routines while the best in
the world were competing on other events. But the *US* was the best in the
world Tuesday nite, and you cannot take that away from these women.
I do believe, all that said, that the AA and EF will produce different, and
perhaps more equal crowd reaction since the non-US gymnasts will not all be
competing at the same time as the US gymnasts. In this way, the
non-gymnastics-educated audience members will have the opportunity to see others
and appreciate their performances, since it's not so much of a 'team' thing.
I know this is an emotional issue, and I'd really like to avoid a flame war. I
am generally a non-confrontational person, but I just feel like there's perhaps
a need to be 'PC,' or whatever, in downplaying the women's victory. If you feel
you *must* make your comments known regarding this issue, please do so
And to the poster (again, deleted message, sorry I don't remember who you are),
who compared this to the Scam Cup or US Nationals, I don't know if your post
referred to the Women's Team or the Men's AA, but your comments seem a little
To wrap this up: Folks, I am a Foreign Language and English as a Second
Language teacher, I deal with folks from other countries every day. I have
travelled a bit, and I am the first to admit that the stereotypical 'Ugly
American' is alive and well, here and abroad. I know we Americans have the
potential to be...'unrefined,' but I think that sadly, that potential is in all
of us. The challenge here is to set a good example and educate as many people
we can about it. My $.02...(and change)
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 16:37:43 -0500
Subject: Poor Kerri
Less than a day after she became the hero of the games people still can't
seem to get her name right. Last night on CBC Brian Williams called her
Kelly Strug and the Montreal Gazette wrote about and got her name correct
trough out the article until the very end when she became Kerri Strong.
This is of course the same paper that said Yvonne Tousek failed to make
the all around so their knowledege of gymnastics in not the greatest.
Also today there was an opinion piece in the Olympic section on the
vault. It was writen by a reporter for an Indianapolis newspaper and was
very negative. The first major problem was the man seemed to think Kerri
was a baby. He went so far as to say Bela hoisted Kerri up on the award
platform like an offering to the gods as something about him treating her
like a piece of meat. It was so obvious new nothing aabout Kerri Strug
and this article was an insult to Kerri abve all else.
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 17:45:14 -0400
CBC just showed Tousek on bars and beam - 9.1 and 9.575, i believe. Now
i understand why so many are excited about her...beautiful beam routine -
it seemed so effortless. she has a beautiful style and grace about her.
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 17:49:47 -0400
Subject: At The Olympics, Day 7
On my first night at the Olympics, the bus driver taking me and about 35
other people back to our cars got lost. Our half-hour trip took 1 1/2 hours,
and we joked that we got the "scenic route."
On my second night, another bus driver prepared to get on the wrong
highway until a chorus of Atlanta natives on the bus yelled in unison,
directing him to the correct road.
Last night, on my way to the Olympics, our bus took the sideview mirror
off a merging Jeep. (We pulled over to the side of the road and sat for a
half-hour while police filled out their reports.) Then, when we got on the
bus to head back, an Olympics representative got on the bus and publicly
asked if there was anyone who could give our driver directions on how to get
to the drop-off point. On the same night, a bus driver pulled to the side of
the highway and promptly quit, saying the job was too dangerous.
The lines to get on the busses are often thousands of people deep, and
I've waited as long as an hour in the sun to board a bus.
Welcome to what is being called the Glitch Games.
The transportation problems have gotten so bad here that many foreigners
and the foreign press are calling this one of the worst-run Olympics in terms
of logistics. Take a look:
**The London Daily Mail -- "Olympic Chaos."
**Mexico City News -- "Atlanta Reels"
**Los Angeles Times -- "Bum steers in Bumfuzzled Atlanta"
**And France-Soir said: "Africa has been deprived of the Games since
their creation with the pretext that African countries don't have the
necessary infrastructure. After Atlanta, any country in the world can apply
to host the Games."
Through all of these transportation woes, I've tried to remain positive,
but sometimes, these problems can get to you. On my very first day here, on
the day of the Opening Ceremonies, those in charge chose not to open the
park-and-ride parking lots. They decided to wait until Day 2 of the Olympics
to do that.
Why? What was their reasoning on that?
All the literature I received in the mail from the Olympic Committee
urged me to use the park-and-ride. So, on my first day, I left at 10 a.m. and
went to the first park-and-ride. It was closed. A cop directed me to a second
one several miles down the road. It was closed. I got directed again and
again. Behind me were hundreds of other cars, being directed from one closed
lot to another.
We finally ended up in a private parking lot of a mall. There, we were
charged $20 for the privilege of parking our cars. By the time I parked, it
was 2:30 p.m.
That night, I took the Marta train to the Oympic stadium station, where
busses were waiting to take us to the stadium. But the busses didn't take us
to the stadium. Instead, we got dropped off about 1 mile short of the stadium
and were asked to walk through a very scary neighborhood.
Imagine thousands of people being funneled through a neighborhood of
abandoned homes and shady-looking people hawking wares on their front lawn.
Some of the homes reminded me of the crack-cocaine shacks I've written about
in the past. One man stood in my face, demanding that I buy one of his
visibly warped 1970s records he had lying on his front patio.
I ignored him, but I wondered how frightened the foreigners were as they
were being confronted by people speaking languages they couldn't understand.
Then, when Opening Ceremonies ended, the Olympic organizers decided to
close the entrance that folks used to come in. So you had tens of thousands
of people -- a sea of humanity -- all walking towards what we thought was the
exit, only to be turned away by a man in a bullhorn, directing us to the
other side of the stadium. It was utter chaos as we all banged into
eachother, trying to breathe and walk.
When we reached the new exit, there no busses. Yep, they had decided to
let us walk all the way back to the train station. It had to be 2 miles.
Up hills. Across a bridge.
I'm 29 years old and pretty fit, but after a long day, I was exhausted
and barely making it. I was nearly brought to tears as I watched elderly
people -- including one woman with a walker -- being forced to make the trek.
Then, as tens of thousands of people approached the Marta train station,
a police officer stood there with a bullhorn, saying something that astounded
me. You see, the Marta is free to all Olympic travelers. Otherwise, it costs
somewhere around $1.50. Well, it was 1:30 a.m. as we approached this Marta
station -- all of us a part of this line of people that extended all the way
back to the Olympic stadium.
Keep in mind that it's 1:30 a.m. A police officer with a bullhorn
announces, "If you're coming from Opening Ceremonies, please take out your
ticket stub and show it to the attendant. If you're a local traveler, please
have your money out."
I was flabbergasted. Who the heck else would be in this sea of humanity
at 1:30 a.m. besides Opening Ceremonies folks? When the police officer made
this announcement, the line of people stopped moving as tens of thousands of
people began scurrying through their handbags, looking for a ticket stub.
Some people couldn't find their stubs and were frantically searching for
And some folks who couldn't speak the language had no idea what was going
Every day I've been here at the Olympics, I've faced new problems with
the transportation. The busses are sometimes 45 minutes late, or they just
don't show. On the Marta trains, I've stood on the podium watching train
after train stop but not allowing anybody on because they were already full.
Adding to all of these problems is the heat. We were promised lots of
free water, but I've only seen free water once -- served in those little
V-shaped water cooler cups. Water here sells for $1 to $3 a bottle, and Coca
Colla sells for $2 in the machines (no kidding) and as much as $5 from the
Things are starting to get better, though. Each day, the transportation
problems seem to be fewer. And more signs have been placed around Atlanta,
better directing people to venues and transportation.
But the damage done to Atlanta's reputation may be unfixable. Yesterday,
the Olympic organizers finally called a press conference to address the
problems. But they waited until the sixth day to do so. Even worse, the local
newspaper has been down-playing the problems, running stories about it on
Page 3. Among spectators, though, the lack of water and the transportation
problems was the number one story.
In today's paper, a columnist made fun of the journalists who are writing
about the problems and said the fans were having fun while the journalists
were being crybabies.
This columnist needs a dose of reality. Let him stand in a 1-hour-long
line with 1,000 other people. Let him look into the face of children,
sunburned and sweating. Let him be confronted by some hawker holding a
lukewarm bottle of water in his face, wanting $3 for it. Let him try to sit
down the pavement, only to jump up because it's hot enough to boil eggs.
Let him talk to the mom who is standing over her baby in the carriage,
trying to provide shade while wondering when the bus will show up.
Let him talk to the woman with the walker.
-- Ron in Atlanta
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 17:59:05 -0400
Subject: usa men
I thought the USA men did awesome!!! They did great. They shouldnt be
dissapointed in themselves at all. I am so proud of them. they are a true
team. They were always pulling for each other. I saw the podium trainings
for men and women and the guys acted if they were the best of friends.
this was the first time i ever saw usa women act as a team also. also the
John, John and Blaine handled themselves well in the all around. Where
does Dominique planon training when bela retires???
*** What can you say, USA Gym ROCKS!!!!!!***
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 18:37:05 -0400
Subject: Tousek's 1st 2 results & Amanar replaces Marinescu
CBC has just shown Yvonne Tousek's first two events, bars & beam, live! She
took an extra swing after the Hindorff before the Pak salto - exactly what
she did at Worlds -- for a 9.100. Her beam was once again great with just
a step on the landing of her double tuck dismount -- 9.575.
After Yvonne'sscore was posted, they showed Simona Amanar up next for beam.
They didn't show her routines, probably saving the rest for the prime time
broadcast. But Amanar had not qualified for AA, despite placing First in
the Optional round AA as well as on floor & vault. Somehow she has
substituted the apparently healthy Alexandra Marinescu. Hmm...
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 18:35:13 EDT
Subject: John Tesh -- he is a sportsman!
someone here said that he knows nothing about gymnastic.
Well, I just read it somewhere yesterday on the espn web page, he was a
sportsman at cbs 10 years ago.
so now you know.
oh, i even met him in person one day at Target, he was playing his
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 18:35:13 EDT
Subject: Olympic gymnastics
Now after I read this email, I was thinking if any of the olympic
gymnastics are reading this lists, too? or do they have a email
oh, would any of you out there might became one of the future gymnastic
in Olympic games?
Does anyone have any suggestions as to what would help me with getting my
full? I'm just a young gymnast, tumbler mostly, and a full is what I'm
really lacking. My coach has been trying to help me, but I just can't
to pick up on it. Could someone who can do a pretty good one explain it
Thanx in Advance,
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 19:17:05 -0400
Subject: Tape Requests
Okay, I may not be sure what I'm getting myself into here,
but here goes.
I've been taping the women's gymnastics, so would like to
offer copies to anyone who wants 'em when this is over.
All you gotta do is pay for the postage and the tape.
The tapes are in VHS format, SP (six hours per tape),
taped on a 4-head hi-fi stereo VCR. They'll be copied
using another VCR of the same specs.
What I've got so far:
Team Competition -- Compulsories -- the stuff they showed from
7:00pm on, I wasn't home during the day!
Team Competition -- Optionals -- the top four teams (yeah, I
know, the way NBC showed it, I should just say it's the US.
I'll be adding the All-Around to that tape tonight.
No commercials! Medal ceremony included! Even an interview
with Kerri and Bela on Wednesday morning, and the piece from
Extra on the US women at Planet Hollywood!
I probably will tape the men's and women's event finals, and
the exhibition too, which'll be on the second tape.
So, e-mail me privately if you're interested. Can't promise when
this'll get done, but I'll do my best!
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 19:23:24 -0400
Subject: gym list
Pleas take my address off of the list.
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 19:22:54 -0400
Subject: O: WAG: AA Results
Olympic Games 1996
Atlanta, USA 19 July - 4 August, 1996
Womens All-Around Results (Top 18)
1. Liliya Podkopayeva (UKR) 39.255
2. Gina Gogean (ROM) 39.075
=3. Simona Amanar (ROM) 39.067
=3. Lavinia Milosovici (ROM) 39.067
5. Mo Huilan (CHN) 39.049
6. Dina Kochetkova (RUS) 38.980
7. Rozalia Galieva (RUS) 38.905
8. Shannon Miller (USA) 38.811
9. Dominique Moceanu (USA) 38.755
10. Oksana Chusovitina (UZB) 38.743
11. Qiao Ya (CHN) 38.718
12. Yelena Piskun (BLR) 38.649
13. Isabelle Severino (FRA) 38.524
14. Svetlana Boguinskaya (BLR) 38.499
15. Svetlana Khorkina (RUS) 38.455
16. Elvire Teza (FRA) 38.454
=17. Monica Martin (ESP) 38.318
=17. Dominique Dawes (USA) 38.318
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 19:36:42 -0400
Subject: MENS CHINESE TEAM
I'm one of the young lurkers on this list, but I found out some great news
and wanted to share it. While in gym today my former coaches Johnny and U-ju
wang(SP?) called.Johnny and U-ju used to be on the chinese national team and
were both on thier olympic team. You might also know U-ju from the movie
"American Anthem"- he was mitchs' main competition, the chinese guy who made
the funny faces at him(remember that) Well anyway they called to say that the
chinese olympic team will be coming here to Las Vegas for a couple hours next
week to see Johnny and U-ju so they are holding a banquet for them and have
invited our team. I"m not sure if it's men and women, but I know definiltly
it will be all the men. I am so excited, I just thought I'd share that with
all yal. I'll go back to lurking now.
keep on flip'n,
Date: Thu, 25 Jul 1996 19:49:18 -0500
Subject: NBC coverage
I too had the Triplecast for '92, and miss it very much, but I'm grateful for
the coverage we're getting.
The major complaint that I have is that we have not been kept abreast of the
individuals' standings for AA and EF during the team competition. I've had
some difficulty getting this info from the Web and the newspaper as well.
And I think I read that D. Dawes was second overall counting optionals only.
Is this correct? That would put her in excellent contention for an
individual medal today.
Re: John Tesh, most of the things he repeats over and over are things that
most of the viewers probably don't know. On the other hand, he's had enough
experience covering gymnastics that he should know that there's more to an
event than stuck landings. This is especially obvious in WAG vault.
Somebody will go out and have a mediocre vault and a stuck landing, then
follow with a better vault in terms of form, height, and distance but take a
small hop, and the first (and only) words out of his mouth will be about the
landing. I wish I had a specific example, but I've seen this from him more
Go Dominique Dawes!
End of GYMN-L Digest - 25 Jul 1996 - Special issue