Things Are Happening – May 6, 2016

Upwards of several things occur each week that aren’t significant enough to warrant a full post, because meh (they’re not critical news like GIFs of beam boob-stabbing or making fun of Trautwig’s every word), but they still happen. And I might suddenly have strong opinions about them starting now, so here we go…

1. SHOCK! DOCTOR Rene Lyst will not be returning to Arizona State next season.

The first stiletto of the offseason has dropped. I know you have to pick your jaw up off the floor about this astonishing and unexpected development. After ASU put DOCTOR Rene on the side of the road in a ditch “administrative leave” with only a couple meets left in the season, there was a really huge chance she would be welcomed back with open arms for 2017. Risa Perez 7, Rene Lyst 0.

Now that the saga is finally over and Rene is hanging up her Ghost of the Moulin Rouge meet dresses, it’s time to start compulsively whispering JEN KESLER and ELISE RAY into an old stovepipe to see if that does anything. You never know.

Based on team quality and reputation (these days), the ASU job would be a step down for most of the current D1 head coaches, but also MONEY PLEASE, so not necessarily.

Most teams in this position, however, will try to go with the fresh-faced, up-and-coming assistant coach/lower-tier head coach who might be planning to stick around for a while to build a program into something we remember to pay attention to. That’s what Arizona just did with Tabitha and is 99% why I want ASU to look at Elise Ray. We need Tabitha and Elise going head-to-head as NCAA head coaches.

2. Meanwhile at Penn State…

“Barbour added she’s heard a great deal of positive feedback about the Thompsons. She said the coaches, who took over the Penn State program in 2010 after 12 years at Auburn, ‘care very deeply about their athletes.'”

“A whole half of the team didn’t leave in tears or contemplate suicide, so I’m pretty sure everything is fine. Losing whole classes of recruits is normal, right?”

3. And the winner is…Bridget Sloan.

The competition was life.

But it was also the Honda Award for achievement in…purchasing a sensible suburban family sedan? The trophy is picking the girls up from karate.

What we’ve learned is that Bridget Sloan is the best. Derrr.

In other news, Lexus Demers won the Lexus Award. I’M FUNNY.

4. It’s an honor just to be nominative

The European Championships will be occurring sporadically beginning in a few weeks and taking forever because the men and women’s competitions are at different times for some reason. The nominative rosters have been released.

The Gymternet will be keeping us all up to date with the teams and changes, which is nice because then we don’t have to keep downloading that stupid PDF every time the roster gets updated and buuuuhhhhh. Already so tired.


Also, it’s a nominative list. So…things happen. Usually a whole lot.

The nominated British team is Original Recipe Downie, NuDownie, Fragapane, Harrold, and Tunney, which would be a somewhat odd choice for the team—all things being normal—going sans Tinkles. (I’m not saying it’s a flattering nickname; I’m saying it’s happening and you can’t stop me.)

Tunney and Harrold on the same team seems redundant. Nine of the twelve TF spots are theoretically covered by Downie, Downie, Frags (not always ideally, but are there better choices?), so then they’d just need one vault, one bars, and one floor. It seems logical, then, to bring Tinkler for vault and floor and then either Tunney or Harrold for your last TF bars routine, but not both. Something else must be up. Also, nominative. It would be a positive to get Tunney back out there at a major event.

It’s fascinating to look at which teams are even trying and which teams care about this competition exactly zero percent. Netherlands isn’t sending a full team, and Germany has suddenly decided they’re the Chinese MAGs now and are bringing a total B team.

That does mean Romania might actually make the Team Final! Womp…

Once again, Romania plans to send a team of Ponor, Bulimar, a pillowcase full of mixed nuts, a strip of paper with “Ana Porgras” written on it, and the concept of regret. So it probably won’t go great. How bad is it? It’s Ponor-is-training-bars bad.

Meanwhile, Russia is super going for it with Afanasyeva, Melnikova, Mustafina (!), Paseka, and Spiridonova, so something will obviously go terribly wrong. Someone is going to trip over an infected tooth at a bus stop and never be able to compete again. Really, with this team, Russia should win, but GB is right there and Russia is Russia, so…

I suppose Italy comes in as the favorite for bronze. France is also sending a full, top-level team and not phoning it in, so I could see a 4th for them.

Sadly, the women’s team final at Euros is on the same day as Secret Classic. Can’t they spread these things out a little bit so we’re able to care about both of them the same amount? Shouldn’t Euros be right now or something? I really think it should be right now. To Switzerland, everyone! Schnell, Aliya! Schnell!

5. Ellie Biles

Last weekend Ellie Downie joined the FIG’s Unpronounceable Second-Tier Manufacturing Centers of Eastern Europe World Cup Series and won all the things while doing this.

Cool game.

6. The drawing of the lots

Tonight, while you’re asleep, Bruno Grandi will be squeezing down your chimney and delivering…wait. No. Stop. Too horrifying.

The Olympic draw will be taking place shortly (in the middle of the night tonight, America time), so you’ll wake up to some lovely presents in the morning.

But before you go to sleep, be sure to set out all your hot takes for tomorrow about how whichever major team ends up in the first subdivision WILL GET UNDERSCORED AND WON’T MAKE ANY EVENTS FINALS AHHHHHH. (Yes, they will. It’s fine. It’s always fine.)

7. JO Nationals, nationals for people named Jo. Jo from The Facts of Life is the defending champ.

This weekend features JO Nationals, aka the opportunity for the college coaches to run around with one of those wedding-registry scanner guns going, “WANT IT. WANT IT. WANT IT.” For our purposes, it’s also our most significant preview of 2017 non-elite freshman, helping us learn who we should care about for next year. They will populate Sunday’s later senior sessions, which have now been broken up into A-F age categories instead of A-D to more helpfully separate the ones I’m paying attention to from the 13-year-olds I have literally no interest whatsoever in. You’re 13. Do your Spanish 2 homework or something.


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