I find the juxtaposition of back-to-back interviews between Tai and Tim to be interesting:
Tai says that she and Randy (and nobody of her era) would ever ever talk back to a coach, or leave a coach, or disrespect a coach (she said the same in my interview with her as well). She also says that she's not sure how Sasha Cohen got away with treating Mr. Nicks differently. Skaters of her era really put the reins in the coaches' hands, for better or worse.
Tim, from what I've gathered from both my interview with him and this latest one, is of the mindset that the skater has more latitude/ability to control his destiny. Skaters have the reins, for better or worse.
Not sure which way is best, but it is a shift from how the relationships used to be. Coaches like Nicks, Carroll, Kohout, and my coach as well, have all said to me that skaters talk back more, skaters listen less, etc etc. And yes I know the ancient quote from Socrates about how adults always complain about the unruliness of the younger generation. But I'm not surprised at all if none of the older coaches want to deal with it, since they certainly don't need the stress or income. And to the above poster's point about Chris Bowman . . . . I think Frank has a very short tolerance at this point, fairly or unfairly. He put up with a lot from Bowman.
I think before 1994 it was too cost prohibitive to coach hop and a skater had no hope of earning substantial money as a pro unless they won a big title so they had more incentive to listen to their coach. Now skaters have personal trainers, managers, choreographers, sports psychologists, dance instructors and agents advising them.
As far as Frank is concerned, he got dumped by Michelle during an Olympic year and I haven't heard him complain about it. Frank does go on about Linda Fratianne and the 1980 Olympics, but he said in one interview that he learned his lesson then and he would never invest so much of himself emotionally in a skater again.
Last edited by TheIronLady; 01-08-2013 at 07:44 PM.
One thing I enjoyed about the Skating Lessons interview with Tai Babilonia versus prior interviews like the one on the Manleywoman site is that they let Tai speak, and they didn't talk a whole lot. They also didn't talk about the microphone or anything like that. Those things can be a little distracting. I like their professionalism.
The cast of characters behind these podcasts.... helpful? looking for solutions or just controversy/axes to grind? Time will tell I guess.
It takes enormous time and effort, not to mention charm, substance, talent and persuasion to line up the guests manleywoman has interviewed over her now 62 podcast episodes. To have landed Kurt Browning for her debut podcast, that’s what I’d call a coup! It’s not an easy enterprise, so the fact manleywoman has been continuously providing this free service to fans for six long years, is remarkable and commendable. Yes, there can be problems with “microphones,” but manleywoman has not allowed any technical problems, logistics, time constraints, or even personal matters to prevent her from continuing to provide this excellent service. She interviewed Frank Carroll (#14) while he was riding in his car, since that’s the time he had available. She has persevered during difficult interviews where the subjects had limited time and she still managed to engage them in worthy and interesting discussions. She has a fun, free-spirited approach, but she doesn’t shy away from asking probing questions about controversial subjects. You should listen to her interviews with Tim Goebel (#49), Debi Thomas (#30), Leah Adams (#54), Lucinda Ruh (#52), David Kirby (#50), and Norbert Schramm (#61). The podcasts are verbatim and apparently unedited for the most part, and for that reason alone manleywoman deserves many kudos!!! In no way is that easy to finesse.
If you are under the impression that manleywoman did not allow Tai Babilonia “to speak,” you really should go to the manleywoman podcast site and actually listen to episode #28 with Tai Babilonia. Perhaps you are a more visual person and thereby gain more enjoyment from “watching” Tai talk, and that makes you errantly think Dave and Jenny "allowed Tai to speak” more than manleywoman did. I think even Tai herself would be gobsmacked by your comments. As Tai has admitted, she loves to talk, and I doubt anyone who desires to interview Tai, has any intention or indeed any hope of keeping her from speaking. (The same can probably be said about me. )
As far as things being “distracting.” Lots of things can be distracting, even while watching and listening to Jenny’s and Dave’s visual podcasts. The thing is whether or not you can appreciate the effort and passion involved in what Dave and Jenny are creating, and in what Allison Manley has pioneered with her podcast interviews. If you have constructive criticisms, why not send them to manleywoman privately. I’m certain she welcomes comments, critiques, suggestions, as well as volunteers to help with transcriptions and in other ways anyone can be supportive, such as with donations.
I believe Jenny majored in Journalism and she does a great job with writing and interviewing. I admire Jenny for how she is giving back, and for how open and honest she has been in talking about "politically incorrect" subjects in the sport of figure skating. I’ve enjoyed Dave’s site, Aunt Joyce’s Ice Cream Stand, and I admire his depth of knowledge and his outspoken critiques about the sport. Likely, Jenny and Dave would be the first to say that manleywoman’s podcast has been inspirational to them. I know it has been very educational and inspirational to me. Jenny Kirk has also been interviewed by manleywoman: podcast #33. Check it out! What Jenny and Dave are doing, while different in approach, is also complimentary as well as complementary to what manleywoman is doing and has done. With the generous time and delightful input provided by her interviewees, manleywoman has deftly and very “professionally” succeeded in excavating the past and making figure skating history come alive in the moment.
I can’t wait to listen to manleywoman’s latest podcast #62 with Carol Heiss Jenkins, Part 1. A big thanks to you Allison Manley, and to all your guests.
Last edited by aftershocks; 01-09-2013 at 06:22 AM.
And further. It is very hard to be first at anything. Manleywoman pioneered podcasts for us skating fans and has been consistent over years in providing them. When you're first there's no road map. I give her a boatload of credit for that!! That said, the more the better.
I am pleased that Dave Lease appears to have developed a more positive understanding of other skaters' body image issues and eating disorders although I find it late in coming. As recently as Feb 2012 he posted on his Twitter "I miss anorexic Sasha Cohen." (3:44 p.m. Sat, Feb 4) and dismissed readers who were critical of the anorexia comment.
This is the kind of comment - this and all the criticism of skaters' body types, that sort of thing - that helps sustain the critical body image culture that many smart people/coaches/parents/former skaters like Tai are trying to address positively. The very nature of figure skating gives rise to body image issues; skating doesn't need people who use those issues as 'material' for uninformed commentary and inappropriate joking because it's all far from funny.
I know that good people in skating are trying hard to deal with these issues in a sensitive and serious manner.
Last edited by Willowway; 01-09-2013 at 09:20 PM.
^^ Oy vey, re Dave's Sasha Cohen tweet. Dave (Aunt Joyce) is nothing if not irrepressible, but maybe he is learning how to avoid being irresponsible and/ or careless in his remarks, while maintaining his feisty uniqueness. Perhaps Jenny reached out to help educate and enlighten Dave on this issue, and they ended up bonding and joining up to help educate and enlighten others re topics in figure skating that are often kept under wraps, glossed over, or deeply buried behind PC smiles and status quo hype.
Well, obviously none of us are perfect. But there is hope for things to change for the better. Debate is good, and more open communication is key. It takes the passion of everyone who loves the sport of figure skating to make individual and/ or group efforts in unique ways that may contribute toward improving the sport. Figure skating needs to become more accessible and open, so that the fan base can hopefully grow.
Last edited by aftershocks; 01-09-2013 at 05:08 PM.
Wow aftershocks ((sniff)). Thank you for such a lovely and supportive post. I don't know who you are, but I'm impressed you remember so many details of my interviews. I tend to forget what happened after they are over.
And Willoway, thanks to you too . . . and to everyone who has sent me a note. There have been many. I'm doing my best with no training and no journalism background, and I get good feedback, so I think I'm doing okay. Would I love a real producer and more sponsorship so I could do more frequent interviews and delivered better? Of course, but I seem to do alright with the time and resources I have.
Audrey Wisiger's Voice America series started this fall, and then Jenny/Dave's soon after. I'm all for more more more, as long as we all keep different enough topics and formats to be complementary and supportive to each other. Mine is simply one way of doing it: Audreys is broader than skating and also includes live callers. Jenny/Dave's is video of course and from the little we can tell so far is about some of the more hushed issues in the sport. There's room for even more formats, I think . . . training videos (though I know the coahing site for iCoach does this, but you have to pay), maybe a skating trivia game, involving younger skaters, etc etc.
Interestingly enough when I was a caller on Audrey's live show with Michael Buckley, he advised me to put my podcasts on YouTube to reach even more listeners. Then BAM, a few weeks later Jenny/Dave were doing just that.
Last edited by manleywoman; 01-09-2013 at 05:06 PM.
Why the eye-roll? Knowing how much work a podcast takes to do, I'm SURE that J/D conceived of their podcast before I spoke to Michael Buckley. I meant the comment more in the 'great minds think alike" mode. Also Buckley is friends with both J/D, so he probably had already suggested it to them.
You also posted that Michael Buckley said to put yourself on youtube, then suddenly they did it. What is interesting is that Michael Buckely was on a video podcast, that went on youtube. IT is not like it was that unique of an idea, and obviously since you have not done it after he suggested it, then it is obviously something that you were not interested in or did not think would be useful.
If you have competition, then compete with them, dont post stuff on here and have people support or slam you, compete with him! Now in the mean time PLEASE post part two of Carole Heiss!
Posting Carol Heiss later this month. I also didn't ask anyone to post anything for me. I appreciate that they did it, but it was hardly a conspiracy on my part.
And if you look at my past posts on Facebook.Twitter, etc, I've been very supportive of both J/D and Audrey, spreading their podcasts around social media since they debuted. I'm interviewing Audrey next week, as a matter of fact. I'm thrilled there are more podcasts, I'm just surprised it took this long. (I know about the Ice Queens, but their format is very different, not interview style). I also agree it will raise everyone;s game.
As for Buckley's idea: I do plan on putting my stuff on YouTube. I've been very sick the past month. So nothing "obvious" about it. Clearly it's a great idea, since YouTube has a huge following, so it makes perfect sense. I think Audrey (if Voice America allows) should get hers on YouTube as well, and they all should get theirs on the iTunes Store since it's the largest podcast directory. The more the better.
Listening to Tim's interview with J/D right now and am enjoying it. They also got the fact that the videos now play back to back, so I don't have to restart each one. Nice improvement.