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The irrepressible, exasperating Mirai Nagasu, part II

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by modern_muslimah, Jan 29, 2012.

  1. skfan

    skfan Member

    i think it's unfair to say mirai was a zombie the whole time--i think mirai was attacking with determination / anger / defiance at the very start of the long program.

    it made me optimistic, actually--i kept thinking, like bobek (another of my favorites) she is going to go all out and have a great performance when people have begun to count her out, when the pressure is sort of 'off' (although in COP being 5th doesn't mean you're out of contention for gold). i have heard people say she had a sour expression on her face, and i suppose that might be how they read her expression, but i didn't see an absence of emotion--at least not at the start of the long program.

    it maybe that mirai is waiting for frank to tell her, try somebody else, because it's hard for her to 'fire' a legendary coach. of course, we're all guessing, nobody knows the real story. i am curious about whether nicks would actually accept mirai with ashley already his student, even if mirai wanted to become his student.

    how many years can you defer in the UC system? can you attend part-time?
  2. euterpe

    euterpe Well-Known Member

    No. I was in the arena in the front row and I watched Mirai's facial expressions closely throughout the FS. She was blank-faced from beginning to end. I found that very disturbing.

    I was shocked when I read that she told Carroll she was focusing too much on her facial expressions. Was she trying to get a rise out of him?
  3. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    Ditto. No expression out of Mirai not only during performance but also during practices. None. Once, during a practice session after a long talk with Frank she did a short segment of her program when the expressive Mirai of yore came through but that was the only time I saw that. Deadpan the rest of the time and even sulky.
    Weird. I saw Frank talk to her during practice and before the performance, saying the same thing: "Look up."
  4. sleepypanda

    sleepypanda Member

    I think it depends on the school. I know UCD has a Deferred Enrollment program, not sure about Irvine (or the schools). IIRC, most of the UCs don't allow freshmen to defer admissions, but transfer students with "compelling" reasons can.

    Students can attend part-time--just apply for part-time status every quarter.


    Mirai just looked so out of it Saturday night. I love watching Mirai when she's on, but when she's like that, it's painful. Maybe something is going on with her personal life that's keeping her unfocused, but whatever it is, I hope she takes the time to do a little soul searching and finds herself again. Part of me is still hoping and waiting she'll surprise and dazzle everyone again. The other US ladies have done it before!
  5. bardtoob

    bardtoob Former Choreographer for Anna Maria Tragikova

    With UC schools, it is better for a new student (freshman or transfer) to withdraw at the beginning of the first term rather than defer because "a student that withdrew" has the rights of a student while a deferred admit does not.
  6. b-man

    b-man Well-Known Member

    I will add another observation. Her practices were terrific Tuesday and Wednesday, with the jumps textbook. Her practice Friday, still very good. No falls, step outs or stumbles All were performed deadpan, no emotion. But during the short 20 minute warmup Saturday morning, the pressure became apparent. Mirai made a few stumbles that she hadn't been making all week. She immediately became irritated that things weren't going the way she wanted. It was clear to me that the pressure was already causing her a problem, and I am sure Frank saw it also. She appeared flustered/ upset emotionally, and I thought a good free skate unlikely at that point.
  7. modern_muslimah

    modern_muslimah Thinking of witty user title and coming up blank

    We could be reading all of our thoughts into her head but considering what she has said in the past plus the way she continues to handle disappointment (poorly) seems to indicate that at least some of this is mental. Either way, couldn't your position also be what you are projecting onto her? To be honest, this whole thread is conjecture and unless FC or Mirai come out and tell us what was going on during Nationals, we're all just speculating on what went wrong. So I guess both camps (she's just not that into/she's lazy or she's a headcase who needs help) are both about equal right now. I'm not saying you're wrong and I'm right. Just that we really don't know. Hell, it could be a combination of both. Maybe the disappointments from Worlds 2010 to now are making her lose interest.

    If she really isn't into (which as a fan I hope isn't the case), then I hope she finds what makes her happy. But if she still loves skating, then I hope she can find the right coaching/living arrangement to make her be successful and happy.
  8. wonderlen

    wonderlen New Member

    I think Marai really needs to deal this 'feeling pressure' issue soon. I mean she has been skating and competing internationally since 14 and winning the US title at that age. Sochi is only 2 yrs away and she doesn't have much time. She already blows away so many international/national titles. If she can't figure out how to compete by now, i guess there is nothing left to do but go for plan 'B' career. Talent will only take you so far.
  9. skfan

    skfan Member

    thanks everyone for the insights regarding the UC admission and mirai's expression as observed by those who actually attended the event.

    *sigh* i still hold out hope. don't try to talk me out of it :)

    someone on GS suggested it might be stage fright. it's as good a theory as anything else, IMO.
  10. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    That's all true. In practices she was calm, deadpan on the ice, but everything landed beautifully and easily. Once again, she appeared very well-trained. Off the ice she was laughing and having a good time with fellow skaters, Agnes in particular. I remember Ashley keeping to herself in contrast and having her fighter face on.

    However, right before the short and the free skate I could see where the skaters waited to start their group's warm up and it was a different Mirai. Before she went out to warm up, she was pacing, looked nervous for the first time that week, almost angry or frustrated. On the ice she was tight, her face emotionless, movement mechanical vs. the easy grace of the practices.
  11. agalisgv

    agalisgv Well-Known Member

    All good points.

    I'm not interested in being right, here. My feeling is that there's a fair amount of indication based on things said by Mirai and Frank in previous interviews over an extended period of time that would indicate there are some serious motivation issues and this not just being a situation of her being a headcase (ie, someone who really wants to compete, but unravels during competition). I think to go with the headcase scenario, fans pretty much have to ignore all those previous interviews and reports, and for me that's just hard to do.

    I would also say that insufficient training can often be evidenced by good practice sessions, but poor performance during competition. IOW, an athlete may have trained enough to do well in low-pressure settings, but not enough for muscle memory to kick-in during high-pressure settings. Other skaters have said in the past that was the issue for them and why they were inconsistent. It had less to do with being a headcase, and more to do with not training as hard as they should have been. That could also explain the deadpan expressions too--someone having to constantly think through their program rather than feel at ease enough to project.

    I don't equate that with lazy though--just more different priorities over time.
    Yeah, I don't think she should quit if she can't be on top of the podium. I think people should skate because they want to--as long as it's not causing bankruptcy for themselves or their families.

    I hope Mirai does get her mojo back, but I don't think there's anything wrong with her if she doesn't. And I guess I think it's problematic for fans to assume the only explanation for Mirai's behavior is some sort of psychological problems. Her psyche may be aok, and I don't think we should be assuming she necessarily needs fixing in order to conform to our wants and desires for her.

  12. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    Actually, I thought Mirai didn't look like she was thinking hard at all during practices. She rather looked like she wasn't thinking at all, as in barely present.
  13. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    Sorry for the double post but here's a recent interview with Mirai: http://web.icenetwork.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20120112&content_id=26327510&vkey=ice_news
    Weird. Just the opposite happened, as in she still fell but no evidence of musicality or efforts to emphasize arm movements and to point toes.
  14. edonice

    edonice New Member

    Yes, I noticed that, too! Before and after practice, she looked happy and loose, but on the ice she looked dead serious. And I think this is part of the problem, that she feels she can't be herself on the ice to be successful.
  15. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    Here's another article about Mirai (sorry if they had been posted) http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-mirai-nagasu-20120126,0,5641722.story

    A whole lot of talk about emotions.
  16. mag

    mag Well-Known Member

    The quote about working with Barinova is, IMHO, very telling. I agree that skaters need to push their boundaries, but if Mirai is embarrassed by the emotions and or sexiness required for her programs then they are the wrong programs for her. Everyone grows up at a different pace. I get the impression that Mirai is a very very young 18. If she stays with Frank, I hope that he will take that into consideration with her programs next year.
  17. Jammers

    Jammers Well-Known Member

    Mirai needs to grow up simple as that. Maybe she needs to move away from her folks and find out on her own what she wants. If she's skating for other people and not herself then she needs to quit. Being on her own would make her grow up fast.
  18. berthesghost

    berthesghost Well-Known Member

    I disagree. Mirai's interviews, as nonsensical as they often are, usually boil down to " excuse excuse excuse, but I'm unwilling to even try change"

    All of that "I'm shy" talk can pretty much be lifted word for word from any random Kristy Yama interview, even the non skating ones. She pretty much said all of this while continuously blowing the completion away on dwts.

    Mirai isn't successful because she doesn't want to be.
  19. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    From the several articles I've read so far and from what I've seen in San Jose, I would guess that the motivation is not the problem but ability to focus. They are not the same thing.

    Seems like Mirai lets what Frank considers "little things" get in the way of her focus on her goals. Emotions get the best of her. The evidence of this in San Jose is when Mirai's name was called by a fan during the free skate and she actually turned to look--why?

    Another episode of being unnerved by little things was when after a practice she got off the ice and was walking out of the rink, an elderly lady, obviously an overly enthusiastic fan, called to her and said that she is such a little doll. Mirai flinched and couldn't find words to respond so she just kind of blinked a few times and walked away. Granted, it wasn't the most appropriate thing to say to a powerful athlete in the 21st century but it appeared to have irritated her somewhat.
  20. berthesghost

    berthesghost Well-Known Member

    In San Jose Rudy galindo not only responded to his name being called, but actually broke character to wave to someone in the stands, all while giving one of the most beloved performances of all time.
  21. FiveRinger

    FiveRinger Well-Known Member

    Thanks, IceAlisa for both of those posts with the interview snippets.

    It was good to hear from both Mirai and her coach (and possibly Evan) as opposed to reading all of the negative comments and speculation.

    Part of being 18 is about figuring it all out.....just because you're 18 and you're an "adult" doesn't mean the light automatically goes on and you instantly have all of the answers.

    There is a big difference in winning the national title at 14, when you are completely unaware of the pressure and expectations, and being 18 and having people who mean so much to you put an unbelieveable amount of pressure on you to perform and to also have to deal with the expectations that you have for yourself. That is a lot to deal with, I don't care how old you are. I mean, really, how many of you had it all together when you were 18?

    It's really easy for us to sit at home with remotes in our hands and to speculate as to why this is or why that is, and some of us even pretend to be psychics and mind readers....Why doesn't everybody give Mirai and her team a chance to reflect back on the performances (that were just a few days ago) and see if in the near someone might tell us something significant.....and then you can jump all over it with our opinions about whether or not she should skate or retire or go to the beach or whatever the hell.

    Lots of performers have anxiety, stage fright, panic attacks, and all of that. I remember Mirai's last nationals when she was still with Charlene Wong and she was absolutely terrified to get onto the ice. I'll never forget it because I had never seen it before in a skater and it was really sad to watch. If that is indeed the problem, it does take time to work through those kinds of issues, and for an emotional person it's going to be even more challenging. But that's my personal opinion.....I'm not going to try to guess as to what the real problem. But I'm more disturbed by some of the posts on this thread than I am with Mirai's performance. But I shouldn't be surprised.....Alissa and Caroline have gotten their acts together for the most part. People should be, if they aren't already, tired of whipping on poor Rachael, so I guess Mirai is the next best target for.
  22. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    I don't know if you noticed, but Mirai is not Rudy Galindo. It may have worked for him and didn't disturb his focus. Mirai's focus does seem fragile, OTOH especially when taken in context with what was observed at Nationals and the articles.
    FiveRinger and (deleted member) like this.
  23. winterone

    winterone Banned Member

    Mirai is going in the wrong direction. Simply not improving and all you have to do is look at the skating performance to see this.
  24. Nekatiivi

    Nekatiivi Well-Known Member

    From what I have read about Mirai I get a sense that she has very similiar personality as I do, paired with rather stright upbringing. Not a good combination...

    But best luck for Mirai for sorting her problems out! It is not easy, but it can be done. :)
  25. Jammers

    Jammers Well-Known Member

    If Mirai doesn't improve she will go down with skaters like Tonya Harding and Nicole Bobek as skaters who had all the talent in the world but didn't fullfill it.
  26. berthesghost

    berthesghost Well-Known Member

    Exactly! For everyone of mirai's lame ass excuses on why she can't succeed there is at least 1 ready example of someone who did.
    There is nothing and no one holding back nagasu except for the simple fact that she doesn't want it.
  27. mag

    mag Well-Known Member

    This reminds me of a Saturday Night Live skit where they have Hillary and Sarah giving a speech. Sarah is going on and on about how you just have to want something enough to make it so. I can't find the clip now, but Amy P's response is perfect as Hillary. She goes on and on sarcastically about how yes, she wasn't headed to the White House because she just didn't want it enough.

    I have no idea if Mirai want it or not, but it seems a bit of an insult to Mirai and all the other skaters out there to suggest that whether she makes it or not is based only on how much she wants it. I suspect it is a bit more complicated than that.
  28. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

    Whatever the cause of Mirai's current problems, I hope that a solution can be found.
    It was awful to see her so miserable on Saturday.

    I would hate for the memory of that performance to be her last competitive experience.
    It wasn't something that you would want anyone to carry inside for the rest of their life.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2012
  29. IceAlisa

    IceAlisa discriminating and persnickety ballet aficionado

    I don't understand--because something worked for another skater, it should automatically work for everyone?

    How about she should dump FC and have her father in K&C instead? Perhaps that's how you get to be a 5-time world champion...:rolleyes:
  30. victoriaheidi

    victoriaheidi New Member

    Honestly, I think the speculation that Mirai just doesn't want it is as bad as my own speculation about what may be going on in her head.