A. So, this is a thing
Very important. Must watch. Immediately.
It’s literally just a trailer for the Alexei Nemov Russian Acid Trip Safari of Stars, but I’m still going to have to do a full recap of it. I don’t even know if this stuff happened this year, or in a previous year, or in Nikita Khrushchev’s drunken deathbed fever dream, and I care 0%.
If you’re wondering why I was so disappointed by the Sochi opening ceremony in 2014, it’s because I wanted it to be this exactly.
That video thumbnail of a man-eagle handing the Olympic torch to Alexei Nemov in a dragon leotard is only like the 13th-most insane that happens. In the trailer. Camels.
B. Vanessa Ferrari re-un-de-retires kind of
Lesson #324 never to listen to any whispers of retirement you hear in the six months surrounding the Olympics. We were definitely told during the Olympics that Vanessa Ferrari was planning to retire, but she said on instagram recently that her carriera agonistica isn’t over yet. Potentially. We’ll see. Apparently, she wants another shot at finishing fourth in an Olympic floor final.
Ferrari did, however, have seven Achilles tendons removed and her entire body scraped out—because we could all tell at the Olympics that she was hanging on by a quarter of a thread and was about to sparkle-explode into a cloud of shoulder cut-outs (Act IV of the Nemov show) at any moment. So, she’s in injury mode now, but it’s not like she wouldn’t be carried back onto the Italian team on a golden palanquin the second she’s able to move again. They need her. She was still their best vault and floor worker at the Olympics and qualified for the AA in spite of getting a 3 on beam after landing her layout in Argentina.
I’m beginning to record some of my posts on GymCastic so that instead of reading them yourself, you can listen to my mellifluous sparrow voice read them to you. The first one, NCAA Gymnastics for Beginners, is available in the usual box on this page.
You can find it along with the latest episode of the real show, where we discuss the Valeri news (consensus: well…yeah) and perform a deep exploration of the name Fancy Bears. Judge Ricky also talks Rio, and Jessica chats with a women’s clinical health specialist and doctor of physical therapy re: Larry Nassar, while also attempting to set the world record for number of times using the word “tinkle” in a single podcast. The Guinness Record people are on the way, Jess!
D. NCAA Rosters
Fashionably late, UCLA has released its billion-person 2017 roster, though it’s not as large as it might have been this year—in spite of the nine freshmen—because notably absent from the roster are Nicki Shapiro and Melissa Metcalf, who are out with Stage 2 Implied Medical Retirement. Metcalf was in and out the bars lineup last year, and Shapiro firmly established herself in that beam lineup, though UCLA is so deep this season that they shouldn’t exactly be hurting for routines. “We replaced you with Kyla Ross, so…we’re fine.”
If you want to play the annual game of Wait, Who Is on Scholarship? be my guest.
Taylor Allex is also now missing from ASU’s roster after the previous announcement that she would be taking a fifth year. Oh, Arizona State. This looks like the work of Doctor Rene’s ghost.
Now we just need to make the Pac-12 Network speed things up a little so we can get the schedules.
If you want to follow team training updates and upgrade videos, head over to the snapchats, which is where the cool teams put their videos now to make sure they’re hip with the youths. Meanwhile, I’ll be over here pouring lemon juice in my eyes and pulling out my hair one strand at a time.
NLI Day this year is November 9th. Spoiler alert…
Actual gymnastics has returned-ish, with the Pan American Barely-A-Thing Championships being conducted last weekend. It was barely a thing. But of note, Mexico’s new 2016 senior Nicolle Castro won bars with an actual routine and a score of 14.100. She’s legit.
For reference, Mexico’s highest bars score at 2015 worlds was 13.200.