Things Are Happening – April 30, 2020

A. Bad Maggie

Oof. I’m out of practice with this, it’s been so long. How does one…say…the things…that are happening?

A week on from when USAG told those involved that it would be announcing a verdict in the Maggie Haney affair (CALENDARS ARE HARD, Y’ALL—what with the days and the boxes), we learned today that Haney has been suspended for eight years for ruining the life of national treasure Laurie Hernandez. Haney can apply to be reinstated after those eight years and would then be on probation for a further two, but eight years is a loooong time…

Laurie discussed the mental toll of training with The Haney in an instagram post today, and everyone went, “You could tell by that leg pose.” Burned into my brain.

In the most recent information about this case, we also learned that Riley McCusker was among the athletes who affirmed to the hearing panel that Maggie sucks, which had not been confirmed during the initial hearing. Remember when we were playing the “but Riley could stay with Maggie because she’s 18” game? Ye…no.

Continue reading Things Are Happening – April 30, 2020

Olympic Beam: A History, Part 1 (1952-1972)

1952 Helsinki

1.Nina BocharovaSOV19.22
2.Maria GorochovskayaSOV19.13
3.Margit KorondiHUN19.02

The first Olympic medals for excellence on the best apparatus (see: website, name of) came at the 1952 games in Helsinki. Because when you think of a celebration of summer, you think of Finland.

Team gymnastics had appeared in three previous Olympics (1928 Amsterdam, 1936 Berlin, and 1948 London), but those games did not award medals for individual performance to women the way it did to men because women existed only as sentient collective globs until 1952, when science figured out how to break them off into individuals.

While beam medals were handed out for the first time in 1952, no separate event finals were held at these Olympics. Individual medals were based entirely on scores from the team event, much like the current NCAA format.

In another olde-tyme departure, competitors in 1952 were permitted a second attempt of their compulsory routines if they didn’t care for the first one and wanted to retake the SATs to see if they could get a better score—though the second score had to count, even if it was worse than the first.

Most significantly, the Soviet Union made its Olympic debut in 1952 and immediately went, “I WANT ALL THE MEDALLSSSSS,” taking both gold and silver on beam, but also charitably allowing Hungary to win a bronze because of throwing scraps to the peasants.

Continue reading Olympic Beam: A History, Part 1 (1952-1972)