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  1. #1

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    The Worst People I've Sat Near at a Skating Competition.

    This thread came from a discussion over at SS. So, go ahead and share your horror stories of the worst people you've sat near at a skating competition.

    One of the worst for me was at 2004 US Nationals in Atlanta during the junior ladies free skate. I was seated directly behind the family of one of the competitors in the event. Before she skated, her family completed railed ever single skater that preceded her. They talked about how slow they were, how cheap their costumes were, how bad their jumps were, etc. Then their daughter skated and COMPLETELY BOMBED. If I didn't believe in Karma before, I totally believed in it after that. I thought, okay, they'll shut up now. WRONG. After she skated, they bitched about how the scores were all wrong (they thought she should have been in the 5s with 3 falls) and the judges were idiots (in fact they started calling the names of a couple judges on the panel and how they were going to let them have it when they got home). When Katy Taylor and Kimmie Meissner skated, all they could do was complain about how their daughter would have wiped the floor with these two and that Kimmie, in particular, would never amount to anything. They also railed Taylor for her lack of a 3 toe and how that should lower her scores, even though she did a 3 lutz in the last 10 seconds of the program. They were told multiple times that they need to stop and it just got worse and worse. I was thrilled that they didn't show up for the senior men's free or ladies free that evening.
    Last edited by Allen; 01-03-2011 at 05:44 AM.
    Logic is in the eye of the logician --Gloria Steinem

  2. #2
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    One year at a show, I sat in front of a woman who railed LOUDLY about how a young skater (who was quite fit, by the way) was fat and later, how she wished Michelle Kwan would die.

  3. #3
    Minecraft Widow
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    I don't think I've ever sat near any one awful (knocks wood). I believe I even had the good fortune of meeting Eislauffan because Mr skateycat and I were sitting near her at 2002 Skate America.

    I decided to not attend some skating competitions last year because it was either go by myself or be potentially someone awful to sit near because I don't think little skateycat is quite ready for the boredom and cramped conditions that are a part of attending a competition.

    He did have lots of fun watching Skating With the Stars on the TV, having a favorite team and discussing who would win the next "battle"! So I think in a few years when his attention span is a little longer, we might give it a try, with Mr skateycat along to take him elsewhere should he decide he's done with the whole thing.
    Cigarettes are like squirrels. They are perfectly harmless until you put one in your mouth and light it on fire. -- @ciggybuttz on Twitter

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    Mine was definitely Worlds 2009 during the ladies free. I was sitting by 3 skaters who competed that week and one particular pairs skater would not SHUT UP. She was literally talking the entire time during the second to last flight to the male singles skater sitting next to her and I think it was right before Rachael Flatt was about to begin where I had enough.

    I asked her, "Excuse me, are you a skater?" (At the time I didn't know who she was but she had a credential)
    She said "Yeah" with a bit of an attitude and I said something like "Well don't you think you should have enough respect for your fellow skaters and not talk during their performance?"

    She said she would stop talking but kept yapping away anyway so my friend and I just moved to any empty seat we found.

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    Ages ago I sat by a family of a novice pair team, who they admitted were in their last year together as she had outgrown him. They skated a programme which was simpler and slower than their less clean skating competitors and the family just could not accept why they had not placed higher. They loudly grumbled about this right up to the podium, and when all the teams got on the top step for the photo they shouted 'that's it, that's where they belong' very loudly.


    I'm sure they were nice people really.
    “What’s on the revengenda this evening?” – Nolan Ross

  6. #6
    U.S. Ice Dance Junkie
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    At the Olympics free dance in Vancouver, I sat next to an older lady who hummed along to all of the music and gasped in wonder at every single lift, spin, twizzle, you name it. Bless her heart, but I was a bundle of nerves already, and I was about to strangle her.

    The fidgety kids next to me at SA '07 weren't very much fun. That's when I wanted to start a crusade to have an age minimum for entrance into a skating event. Five year olds don't have the required attention span for a four hour event!

    On the flip side, I've met and gotten to know some really awesome people, sitting next to them over the course of a week-long event. Shout-out to the fun couple who sat next to me at my first Nats; the super sweet mother and daughter in St. Louis; the awesome lady in Spokane '07 who shared my tennis fandom, and Tiffany Stiegler's mom, who I sat next to in Portland... really nice lady. Oh, and the former ice dancer's parents who sat in front of me in St. Paul. They cheered so enthusiastically for everyone.
    My Blog - Author & Figure Skating Fanatic
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  7. #7

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    The most annoying time I ever had was at Spokane Nationals. I went by myself and was sitting by a group of people that had won seats from a radio contest. They noticed I was writing stuff down in my program book, keeping track of scores, writing down the elements, etc. So one of them asked me where I thought a skater who didn't fall but didn't do very much would place, and I said "badly" to which the woman said, "oh but he didn't fall on any of his jumps!" So we made a friendly bet about the score--her score being waaaayyy off base, a score more suiting to 8th in the world, not the first flight of US Nationals Men. When I was right, the whole family started asking me about every skater, every jump, and every score. Then they would still argue with me! I didn't mind the asking till they started with the arguing. If you don't want to learn, why are you asking me? I'm sure they thought it was just good-natured discussion, but it wore thin pretty quickly.

    The only people that annoy me on principle at every event are those that don't realize that this isn't football or hockey. I'm a big believer in following "house rules" and the culture of seeing skating live is, you clap and root for every skater. You might root for some skaters/countries a bit more than others, but you don't actively root for anyone to fall/do poorly. I understand in a lot of sports, you're rooting for the other team to do poorly as you are for your team to do well, but skating is not like that. In most skating events given the choice of having your favorite win because everyone else fell/skated badly OR everyone skating well but your favorite lose, I really think most of us would rather see a well-skated event with someone else winning. There was one SA where I remember this older man was trying to treat it like a basketball game and kept screaming "FALL!" when non-Americans were skating. Luckily, he realized that this was not acceptable behavior...but it took the entire Men's SP and most of the ladies' SP for him to do so. His poor daughter looked so embarrassed--I felt really bad for her. But not as bad as for me.
    "The practice of sport is a human right. Every individual must have the possibility of practicing sport, without discrimination of any kind and in the Olympic spirit, which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play." –Olympic Charter

  8. #8

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    My only international event that I had problems with was the guy chewing gum behind me at 98 Worlds. I eventually turned around and told him to close his mouth when chewing. After he left the seat to probably go to the toilet, others around me congratulated me.

    At our nationals one year I was sitting next to a skater I know who had her boyfriend next to her. He made some comment about one of the male skaters being gay, which I basically told him to not talk about things he didn't know about. I think he got a big shock.

    When being in the music box at our local competitions can be great fun. But what is said in the box stays in the box.
    When you are up to your arse in alligators it is difficult to remember you were only meant to be draining the swamp.

  9. #9

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    At the Men's Free Skate at the Olympics in Vancouver, there were some really loud obnoxious guys behind us. It seemed like they were really drunk and I think they were speaking Russian. One of them had a vuvuzela and was blowing it loudly and often in my right ear. He also kept borrowing the binoculars from the woman next to us and keeping them for a really long time. He wouldn't even really ask her, he'd just sort of reach over and take them from her. Finally she turned around and grabbed them back out of his hands. As soon as they announced that Evan had won, they got up and left in a hurry.

    But I too, have met some truly awesome people too. At St. Louis Nationals we sat next to some women who used to skate in Ice Follies; they were really friendly and had some great stories.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allen View Post
    whole post
    That sounds like a nightmare! ((Allen))

  11. #11
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    Last year at Euros in Tallinn there were two men sitting in front of me. One of them was wearing a riddiculously big hat, so I couldn't see much of what was happening on a certain spot of the ice (me and my sis used to call him the Mad Hatter ) and the other one was terribly gassy. I mean it. He was farting ALL THE TIME. Try enjoying skating having to struggle with such a smell during 90% of the competition...

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by mia joy View Post
    Last year at Euros in Tallinn there were two men sitting in front of me. One of them was wearing a riddiculously big hat, so I couldn't see much of what was happening on a certain spot of the ice (me and my sis used to call him the Mad Hatter ) and the other one was terribly gassy. I mean it. He was farting ALL THE TIME. Try enjoying skating having to struggle with such a smell during 90% of the competition...
    YUK!!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenna View Post
    That sounds like a nightmare! ((Allen))
    It was shocking more than anything. I'd never encountered skating fans like that.
    Logic is in the eye of the logician --Gloria Steinem

  14. #14
    aspiring tri-national
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    I can't say because I'm afraid they post here. But you guys with the notebook and do-it-yourself CoP, you know who you are.
    "Youth and vigor is no match for age and deceit." -- Prancer

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by PRlady View Post
    I can't say because I'm afraid they post here. But you guys with the notebook and do-it-yourself CoP, you know who you are.
    Do you mean the Boys Who Score? I've never sat by them but I've always thought they were entertaining!

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by mia joy View Post
    Last year at Euros in Tallinn there were two men sitting in front of me. One of them was wearing a riddiculously big hat, so I couldn't see much of what was happening on a certain spot of the ice (me and my sis used to call him the Mad Hatter ) and the other one was terribly gassy. I mean it. He was farting ALL THE TIME. Try enjoying skating having to struggle with such a smell during 90% of the competition...

  17. #17

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    There was a lady at Skate America who could not stand Rachael Flatt and would not stop bashing her, loud enough for everyone in our section to here. It was so distracting!

  18. #18

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    This year at SkAm the 1st day a woman sat behind me with a bunch of little kids, and I mean little. Some were probably as young as 2 or 3. She said someone gave her a bunch of tickets. I think they were her day care kids but they were much too young to be there. One little girl about 3 kicked the back of my chair constantly & a boy about 2 wanted to sit on her lap the whole time..she would put him down & he would whine & then would climb back up. No one around them snarked about it but it was irritating. Luckily she didn't show up the rest of the event.

  19. #19
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    Try filming and having parents of another skater make fun of the skater on the ice. I couldn't post that video at all. And St Louis was the worst. Ladies fs with all the little kids running around screaming where I was. One of the parents gave me a dirty look with my phone vibrated it. She must have had dog hearing (no offence to dogs). Then there was some teen who kicked me in the back about 4 times in the hour. I got up and spent the rest of the comp leaking where ever I was able to.

  20. #20
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    Michael Weiss' family who pour a soda on me when I was cheering for other male competitors. Oh and conducted business on a cell phone during the competition
    Last edited by numbers123; 01-03-2011 at 10:42 PM.

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