I’m not talking about fall, I’m not talking about winter, I’m talking about Figure Skating. There was a time when you couldn't really watch the Figure Skating Season on TV. Mostly because of the structure of the sport. With the addition of the Grand Prix circuit everything changed. This group of invite only competitions involving the world class skaters made it easier to get to know the skaters, their programs, and made an actual Skating Season. After 2002 and the judging fiasco some wonderful changes were made to the sport in regard to the way it is scored and made it even more exciting to watch. Between now and January, there is an event almost every weekend. I can’t wait. Last night, Skate America started airing and, although I haven’t watched all of it yet (the ladies isn’t on until the weekend anyway) I was so happy to look on my TV and see Figure Skating scheduled.
My love of the sport began in ’84 while watching Katerina Witt in the Olympics. I began skating in, I believe, ’87 (I’m sure Mom will correct me if I’m wrong). I was in love with it. I fell even more in love during the ’88 Olympics. To this day, I don’t believe there has ever been a greater Olympic competition; maybe I am just nostalgic though. In Men’s there was the battle of the Brian’s and Browning tried the first Quad. In the Ladies competition we had the battle of the Carmen’s (so sad for Debbie Thomas who was fantastic and could have easily won but kudos to her short program) and Midori Ito burst onto the scene with amazing athletic ability that no woman even thought about equaling for years to come. Gordeyeva and Grinkov dominated the pairs competition with a perfection of grace, athleticism, and love that was magical to watch and American Pairs skating is just now becoming competitive again after Opergard and Watson, not to mention Valova and Vasilyev (the second place team) skated to The Final Countdown. Finally, in Dance, Bestemyanova and Bukin were the most interesting and talented Dance pair I have ever seen and the Duschenays brought innovation and excitement to the most boring skating event there is. It is only recently that people have begun to be able to express themselves in anything approximating that much innovation in Dance. Let's take a second to enjoy Boitano's short program from '88, I chose the short not only because it is shorter but because the musicality is just outstanding. It played fine on my home computer but my work one is too slow and it was not fun to watch but hopefully you have faster computers than they give at non-profits.