Sometimes things are hidden in plain sight.
And sometimes you find them deep in a publicly available document.
And sometimes they come to your attention because the keen eye of a colleague points them out, as, in this case, David Owen did for a recent blog on insidethegames.biz.
And the case in question is just another example of how International Olympic Committee members and those non-members who serve on IOC commissions live off the fat of the land.
And all these people are volunteers, ostensibly inclined to get involved with what is pretentiously called the Olympic Movement (capital “M” in IOC documents) out of an altruistic desire to help athletes in Olympic sports.
Altruism, it turns out, has its financial rewards, shared by an ever-growing number of people, as Owen detailed.Read More
It was the middle of 1964, and 26-year-old Frank Carroll was in San Francisco at a career crossroads.
He had done college, getting a degree in 1960 from the College of the Holy Cross in his native Worcester, Mass., with a major in sociology and Dean’s List grades. He had done competitive skating, with national junior singles bronze medals in 1959 and 1960. He had done show skating, spending four and one-half years with Ice Follies before leaving the show with plans to attend the University of San Francisco Law School, which had accepted him, then deciding he did not want to start academic studies again.
Over the years with Ice Follies, which was styled like an elaborate Broadway review, Carroll had made friends with many actors in musicals like “Kismet,” “Carousel” and “Hello, Dolly.” One suggested he go to Los Angeles, where friends could help get him work in films. He went.
“I would go to auditions, and when they would ask what I did, I said, `I ice skate,’’’ Carroll said. “I was like a joke to them.”
But he was handsome, with a physique buffed in the gym, and that got Carroll parts as a “body person” in three of the eminently forgettable beach movies of the mid-1960s (think “Beach Blanket Bingo,” although Carroll declines to identify which movies he was in or what his stage name was.) He would stand among a group of other “body people” in the background and sometimes sing with the group.
There would be months between film shoots, leaving Carroll to spend his days hanging at the gym or going to the beach until, as he puts it, “I got bored with this ridiculousness.”
A friend who had photographed Carroll at skating competitions suggested he might fill the down time as a skating teacher. After all, he had done some coaching as a Holy Cross undergrad to help pay his school and skating bills and done some more coaching after graduation. The photographer connected Carroll with a rink in the Los Angeles suburb of Van Nuys, where he began working in the 1965/66 skating season.
By 1968, Carroll was coach of a medalist at the national championships. A year later, he had his first national champion: Jimmy Demogines in the novice men’s division. In 1972, he coached Olympic team alternate Robert Bradshaw. In 1976, he coached his first Olympian, Linda Fratianne.
Over the next 40 years, Carroll would become the most successful coach in the United StatesRead More
Canadian choreographer David Wilson was surprised and delighted when he got an “out-of-the-blue” email last week from Kazakh figure skater Denis Ten.
In the email, Ten asked if Wilson would help rework the free skate the choreographer had done for him last season so the program would fit the new time limit, 30 seconds shorter.
Wilson was surprised because he did not think Ten was going to compete next season after enduring another difficult struggle with chronic foot problems.
And Wilson was delighted because it would give Ten another opportunity to show the world a beautiful program to a song called, “SOS from An Earthling in Distress,” that the injuries had kept him from performing the way the skater and choreographer hoped.
“I was really touched Denis wanted to keep this program and thrilled that he was going to have another chance with it,” Wilson said from Toronto Thursday morning. “Now it is gone.”
Ten, 25, died Thursday after what Kazakh media reported was an altercation with two people trying to steal mirrors from his car on a street in Almaty, the capital of Kazakhstan.Read More
In mid-June, the International Skating Union gave a one-year suspension to Huang Feng of China for showing “obvious and systematic” national bias in his judging of the pairs event at the 2018 Winter Olympics.
The first weekend of July, the international federation allowed Huang not only to attend an important ISU seminar on the ramifications of recent scoring system changes but also to take – and pass – a test for promotion as a technical controller, an event official's position that can have an even bigger impact on the outcome of a competition than a judge.
The ISU willingly provided me an answer to that befuddling question, but the logic in the answer smacks of relative ethics in an area where absolute ethics are demanded. The bureaucratic hair-splitting involved simply is unacceptable.
And the ISU's "discipline" of the miscreant judge gives skating fans yet another reason to wonder if they can ever trust the results in this highly subjective sport.Read More