I find sad when people are told about the name of Michelle Kwan that they don't have a clue of even the fact that this is a famous person, not even talking about a precision such like figure skating champion.
I've never heard either of these names, but they are recent American gold medalists. Kwan wasn't even that... (though I'm sure she had way more TV coverage than either of these men.)
I asked my husband last night to name 5 skaters- he started with Lysacek, Plushenko, Nagasu, Kim- and then I directed him to name the 5 skaters he thought most people would know, not the ones I've talked about this year. His response was "Lipinski, Kerrigan, Harding, Boitano, Orser". (I think Orser was heavily influenced by me talking about the Kim/Orser situation, and having just named Boitano and being familar with the phrase "Battle of the Brian's.) I said "what about Michelle Kwan?" and he said "Oh yeah- she was a big deal for awhile." Then he said he also knew Sasha Cohen.
For me, recognition of big names in sports that I don't follow too much is related to age. I tend to remember the big names that competed during my late teens to young adulthood. I don't know if that's true for other people but it is for me. I imagine the reasons for this are that I identified with them more because they were my age peers, I had less distractions then, and my memory was better. For example, in tennis I know some the current starts (Federer, Nadal, the Williams sisters) but I also think of Martina, Chris Evert, MacEnroe and Connors, all from the 70s-80s. Oh yes, and Billie Jean King.
Most people are so clueless about skating. I was talking to a friend before vancouver, and he said he knew who was going to win the skating event. He said Nancy Kerrigan and he wasn't joking. I had to explain she doesn't compete anymore. Lolol
Well, Michelle made millions from corporations thinking people knew who she was. Stupid corporations and their marketing, research and studies.
some people know who she is, some don't.
part of problem was USFsA didn't push michelle name like they are for rachel, mirai, evan , davis and white,
some of the public told them to -they stated no.
most people don't know the names of the figures skaters from 1990 on, they only remember peggy, dick, tenley, dorothy who they grew up with and paid attention to.
once the "internet era" started and most kids paid attention to other sports, or the media paid more attention to women teams such as basketball, hocket, soccer, and tennis which got heavily hyped by billie jean king and the media , plus the action sports, more people grew away from it.
the kids thought it too old fashion and/or not a sport. so now , no one cares
1) too much cheating by federations, judges,
2) the athletes themselves by stating we are in sport, than go on to make money in shows, tours and on tv.
we know they want to make money so to deny is just plain lying.
3) most american people don't classify it as a sport .most people don't care about the cold rink, setting in cold rinks, watching on tv maybe only if something isn't on they don't want to watch.
before 1990 only saw figure skating at national worlds and olympics,
the ogm like dick, peggy only saw at commentating jobs or here and there on a show not constant like scott on shows plus promoting his causes, kristi,
her shows plus on tv like dancing with the stars .
the older skaters took a back seat to up and comer next stars so they could get their foot in door and make money.
but because skaters are making some money know and older skaters still want to make more money. no one is getting out by tours, shows and etc.
instead of having brian and kristi, and scott headline a show why not
michelle sarah, tara and evan .
but dission and img wants to keep the same old forumla or believe the adveristers only want those skaters instead of saying look at these skaters to headline a show,
have the public moved on --yes, but we really wasn't all with you in the first place. only hyped by tonya-nancy mess. we kinda of now who you are but most generally don't want to admit it and/or care .
why most people figure skating isn't their first sport they will go all out for, it is another sport, unless you child is in it , it is a take and leave sport.
why knock the show-it will only hurt the sport-you need to help spread the sport -saying-yes i probably won't watch, go, but why should i knock it down it will only hurt the sport overall. how, the fans who watch, go will knock down your show you want to see.
the skaters i don't want to see i usually-get up and leave when it airs on tv.
i tend to see bits and pieces of all skating shows, but i don't see the whole hours , here lately only watch the people i want to see skate, not the show.
do i say which skaters , no do i say i watch the shows, no.
the fans have to do their part and tell what they like about each show and img/dission the actions has to help the sports but since 1990 they have hurt they sport by only having certain skaters on for whatever reason.
fans don't care why, they want to see the skaters not the agency.
us skating shows since 1994 has been going down for alot of reasons, why certain skaters have only wanted to skate with certain skaters, they pick same skaters, they skate to same music, see same skater year after year and competition after competition. it does get boring.
lots of reasons
I think some people are obsessing (shocker) about one quote made by Kwan among many other quotes in the article. It's not very buzzworthy, but I'm going to focus on this Kwan quote:
"I've been very lucky. I've always wanted to learn, which just positions you to grow. As long as I'm learning and happy with what I'm doing, I'm happy."
Nobody cares about Michelle Kwan. She has been forgotten with her simple National Championship programs too.
It is not like she demonstrated a triumphant universal gesture, a way of telling the world she did it that would be remembered years after a performance and when she stopped competing.
(I've seen her at least a dozen times in the Mercedes Benz commercial -- since I'm a tennis fan as well ...)
Nice article. It's so good to see Kwan happy and pursuing something that she seems to enjoy so much. She always seemed to enjoy skating too. How lucky to find more than one love in a lifetime!