Yes, it’s the obligatory Olympics post. (I’m kidding.) I don’t normally have TV and my computer can’t handle videos (yes, it’s quite a sad life I lead), so when I slept over at Jen’s yesterday, I naturally spent a lot of time in front of the TV. Naturally. (That is, when I wasn’t distracted by her new puppy. So cute!)

I had wanted to watch women’s figure skating for a while–there was so much hype around South Korea’s Yuna Kim that I wanted to see what all the fuss was about.

Mao Asada and Yuna Kim

She’s good. She’s really, really good. Even I was moved to tears when she finished her program, crying tears of relief. The commentator quoted one of her essays, something to the extent of the immense pressure she faced, because if she faltered, not only would those around her turn their backs on her, but the whole nation. The whole nation. It made me angry, that they would be so proud as to put all their hope on one 19-year-old girl.

And it gets more emotional. Canadaian Joannie Rochette’s mother suffered a heart attack and passed away when she arrived at the games. I can’t even begin to imagine how that must feel. Her program was quite emotional, and she ended up with a bronze.

The silver medalist, Japan’s Mao Asada was good too–had it not been for her two slight mistakes, I think her score would’ve been comparable to Yuna’s, but as it was, the discrepancy between the two scores was kind of ridiculous. By all means, Yuna should’ve won, but for there to be such a big difference (almost 30 points!) makes me wonder about the judging. On the same note, it makes me wonder about Joannie Rochette’s bronze placement–she was good, but it didn’t hold the same ease, the sharp clean moves as the other two–if the judges were moved by her story, it definitely showed in the scores.

But I’m no figure skater, so maybe I’m reading too much into it. In any case, I wanted to talk about the American skaters!

Rachel Flatt and Mirai Nagasu

I enjoyed their performances because they didn’t have the same pressure the others faced–they were young, didn’t expect anything, and did their best. Both of them, at the end of their program, had the biggest smiles, and it made me smile too, to know that they were satisfied with their performance. Especially Mirai Nagasu–she was so cute! And so young. But she was good, clearly not as experienced, but to have to go after the three medalists was definitely not easy. I think we’ll see a lot more of her in the future. And Rachel Flatt–I thought it was so cute that she was worrying about homework. Homework! I would’ve asked for that extension.

Before the medal ceremony, they had footage of Mirai asking Joannie for a picture. After they took it, Mirai turned and thanked her, but Joannie walked off without a word. It made me sad; I wish these rivalries that come out of these competitions wouldn’t prevent them from being friends. They have so much in common and they’re facing the same things–I feel like they would benefit a lot from having friendships with the other girls.

I know that this won’t ever happen. There’s too much pressure, too many expectations, too much pride (and too much to do!).

Picture credits: and