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Sylvia

So happy the JGP season is back!
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Looking at Tokyo Olympics through the lens of the 1964 Games by Stephen Wade of the Associated Press:
Roy Tomizawa, who documented the ’64 Olympics in a recent book, described those distant Games 57 years ago as the “Inclusion Games” in an email to The Associated Press.
He called the attempt this time the “Exclusion Games.” But he offered some hope.
“Whether you agree or disagree with the Japanese government, the Games are going ahead in the face of significant risk,” Tomizawa said. But he said these Games might also be turned into “Inclusion Games.”
“With a high degree of difficulty,” he added.
“Organizing an Olympics and Paralympics during this ********* is like Simone Biles executing a Yurchenko Double Pike, a vault so difficult no other female gymnast wants to do it. Biles can. Maybe Japan can, too,” Tomizawa said.
Tomizawa writes in the book about the massive effort to be ready in ’64:
“Police were taking pickpockets off the streets and ensuring bars in Tokyo were complying with directives to close down early. ... In fact, every man, woman, and child in Japan was getting ready to welcome the world to their country believing it was their civic duty to ensure that foreigners who came to town were not deprived of any necessity or assistance.”
This was the year that Cassius Clay won the heavyweight championship and became Muhammad Ali. [...]
And it was later that same year in Tokyo when Yoshinori Sakai — born on Aug. 6, 1945, in Hiroshima, the day the atomic bomb was dropped on the city — ignited the cauldron in the national stadium to open the 18th Olympic Games.
 
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Sylvia

So happy the JGP season is back!
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With medical career waiting, Gevvie Stone takes one last shot at Olympic rowing glory by Khari Thompson:
Stone is also one of the best women rowers in the world: a three-time Olympian who’s represented the United States in London (2012), Rio (2016), and now Tokyo this year.
Doing both for so long hasn’t been easy.
“They both demand close to 100 percent of my energy,” she said of her dueling passions. “When I’m doing medicine, I’m training, but it’s in the back seat. When I’m rowing, I’m doing some medicine with research, studying and the rest, but it’s in the back seat.”
On Monday, August 9, Stone plans to be back in the emergency department at Beth Israel to resume her residency after taking one week “off” in Tokyo after her races finish — her time as an Olympic rower presumably behind her.
But just because she doesn’t plan to row in the Olympics anymore doesn’t mean she’s done with either the sport or the Games in general.
“I love rowing so much, I want it in my life somehow,” she said. “It’s almost impossible to quit it cold-turkey. The more I do it, the more I become addicted to it.”
One of her future goals is to complete a sports medicine fellowship and become the team doctor for the U.S. rowing squad.
Stone notes she’s taken “three big leaves of absence” from practicing medicine to train for the Olympics, including this longer-than-expected break to train for the Tokyo games that were postponed in 2020.
(Dr.) Stone and Kristina Wagner finished second to New Zealand in Heat 1 of the women's double sculls today and have advanced to the semifinals.
 

MsZem

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Sylvia

So happy the JGP season is back!
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... Summer McIntosh, 14, consider this.

Her coach died. Her dad got cancer and is now recovering. Her family was living in three different places.

She endured. And now she’s into her first Olympic final. My [CBC Sports] story:
Coach's death, dad's cancer battle part of Canadian teen Summer McIntosh's path to Olympics
Excerpts:
Back in June, the Canadian Olympic swimming trials were held on Father's Day and the swimmer's dad, Greg McIntosh, was brought up on the big screen inside the venue for a post-race interview.
"That's my dad," Summer said, smiling as her eyes lit up. She waved.
Greg, appeared to almost be at a loss for words, before he composed himself.
"She works so hard. It's so amazing to see her get rewarded for the hard work she puts in," he said. "She deserves this.
"And Summer, I'm so, so happy for you."
That was the first time in weeks Greg McIntosh had been out of bed. He's been battling cancer since January.
"He should have won an Academy Award for that because he literally hadn't left the bed," said Jill McIntosh, Greg's wife and Summer's mother. "That was his first time getting in the shower and having a shirt on."
When Greg was diagnosed with cancer in January, the family made the difficult decision to to split up geographically to minimize the *********-19 risk. Greg moved into a place near the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre in downtown Toronto, Jill and Summer rented a condo near the pool in Scarborough, Ont., and Greg and Jill's other daughter Brooke — a competitive pairs figure skater who competed at the 2020 Youth Olympics — stayed at the family home in nearby Etobicoke.
"When Brooke was skating I would go to the house and fill the fridge up. I couldn't be in contact with her," Jill said. "And then with Greg I'd triple-mask and help him when I could.
"You just kind of go into mama bear mode. You just have to get through. I had to take one day at a time, like a swimmer. And not be too scared about the future."
Congrats to Summer McIntosh who posted a 4:02.42 (new Canadian national record) in the 400 freestyle final yesterday for 4th overall in her Olympic debut! SwimSwam.com reports that McIntosh is the "15th fastest female to ever swim the 400 free."

ETA: So much respect for all supportive parents of elite athletes! :kickass:
 
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Karen-W

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missing

Well-Known To Whom She Wonders
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The Smithsonian has an interesting and informative article on the history and development of gymnastics.

In the first half of the 20th century, gymnastics proved most popular in continental Europe, where the sport’s modern resurgence had taken place. Though gymnastics experienced a decline in popularity around the mid-1900s, interest soared during the Cold War, when the Olympics emerged as a cultural battleground for nations on both sides of the Iron Curtain.

“The Olympics were seen as a place where the Cold War could be contested,” Cervin explains. “It was a place where, in all sports, the ideologies of communism and capitalism were represented. Winning at a sport was effectively billed as being superior, proving the superiority of that country, from ideology to values...”

Writing for the Guardian in 2012, journalist Paul Doyle noted that “Korbut broke sporting boundaries by doing something considered unfeasible, almost freakish.” He added, “[W]hat intensified her popularity was that, in another sense, she subverted systems by being utterly normal. Her displays of emotion during competition—her girlish smiles after successful performances, her tears of distress after botched ones, and her warm, natural connection with crowds—exploded the myth fostered by Cold War propaganda that Soviets were a callous, mechanical bunch.”


 

ioana

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Enjoyment is probably not the right word, but this is accurate and does a good job providing some background about Iordache's Olympic appearance. The way a formerly successful program was literally ran into the ground between mismanagement and obsessing over lack of gold medals still boggles the mind. The fact that Larisa keeps coming back, no matter how many times she gets injured (one of her legs is about 1/4 in shorter than the other, so she is prone to foot and leg injuries) is nothing short of miraculous. I hope she gets recognition for that and making an Olympic final, no matter where she places.

 

Sylvia

So happy the JGP season is back!
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WaPo: In Minnesota’s Hmong community, Sunisa Lee’s Tokyo gold ‘means everything’
It was a joyful, exhausting day for a community that has found a home in Minnesota. Like many in the state’s Hmong community of more than 66,000, Lee’s parents fled Laos as children for refugee camps in Thailand before landing in St. Paul. Now they are celebrating both Lee’s accomplishments and the opportunity to share their culture with the world.
“A lot of people don’t know what being Hmong is,” Shyenne said. “It’s nice having people finally learn who we are.”
That includes a growing sense of the importance of sports, said Punnarith Koy, who coached Sunisa Lee when she joined Midwest Gymnastics at age 6.
“For first-generation Asians, when I grew up it was all about academics,” Koy said. “Mine did not encourage athletes — we had to sneak around. I forged a signature to do swimming.”

This story was originally published on July 22, 2021:
John often marvels at how alike he and Suni are, how she shares his fierce competitiveness and drive in a way none of her siblings do, even though he is not her biological father. John was recently divorced with two kids, Jonah and Shyenne, when he met Yeev and her 2-year-old daughter, Suni. Suni is only 12 days younger than Shyenne, and many of their classmates believe they are twins. John and Yeev also have three children together: Evionn, Lucky and Noah. It was Suni's decision, despite the fact that John and Yeev have never legally married, to change her last name to Lee.
"She wanted his last name," Yeev says.
John was 7 when his parents brought him and his siblings to the U.S. from Laos, one of several countries where the Hmong, an ethnic group of between 6 million and 12 million people, live. John's father was a Hmong soldier who fought alongside the U.S. military during the Vietnam War in what is now known as the Secret War. It was evening on St. Patrick's Day, 1979, when the family arrived in St. Paul. "It was super cold and we didn't have jackets," John says. "We had never ridden in a car. We'd never seen lights. We didn't have electricity in Laos. It was the first time I ate dinner at a table."
Yeev, who is also from a large Hmong family, was 12 when she arrived in St. Paul with her mother and older sister from Laos in 1987. "We went to a grocery store, and I thought it was magic. Vanilla ice cream in a box. Starburst. And girls wore jeans instead of skirts. I was so excited to wear jeans," she says while wearing a pair of stonewashed jeans.
 

Buzz

Socialist Canada
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Dutch track star Sifan Hassan has had quite the Olympics already by winning her 1500m heat despite falling and winning the 5000m. She arrived in the Netherlands just 13 years ago as a refugee. :respec:

 

CantALoop

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Another amazing story of humility and hard work from the Philippines 🇵🇭 with boxing silver medallist 🥈 Carlo Palaam, who used to scavenge landfills as a child:

https://www.france24.com/en/live-ne...-rise-from-poverty-says-filipino-boxer-paalam

"The silver medal symbolises what I went through because when I was a young boy, I was a scavenger and I collected junk and garbage," he said.

"I know this medal is made out of recycled materials, and I can identify with it because it is also made from waste material and garbage."
 

skatingguy

Golden Team
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The people greeting her needed to do better than shouting “You-Ess-Eh” at her. Surely they know her name? :confused:
I'm sure most of the them do, but when you've been indoctrinated from a young age it's hard to change the programming.
 

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