A random girl's random gymnastics ramblings.

Monday, March 7, 2011

it tastes like pink. it tastes like pink!

A lot of gymnastics went down this past weekend.  Most notably the American "SCAM" Cup.

There are lots of opinions floating around the gymnternet right about now.  I will only be addressing mine, which is:


Seriously, everyone needs to just shut. up.

Starting with Al, Tim and Elfi.   I mean, they were offensive to EVERYONE.  Everyone sucked, Musty is nothing but a diva, Jordyn is pissing off the world, and HQS is that "Chinese woman."  

"Mustafina is glaring at the monitor because there was just a presentation for the Magnificent 7."  SHUT UP. 

"In 1996, Khorkina took off her medal, whipped it around her head, and threw it in the trash."  SHUT UP.

"I ran into Alexandrov in the hotel, and when I mentioned Jordyn Wieber, he turned into the hulk and ripped his shirt off."  SHUT UP.

"I totally speak Russian now, and I overheard Alexandrov telling Aliya to do the easy routine."  SHUT UP.

"Welp, I'm just going to kick my feet up and relax while Mustafina clinches her first American Cup title."  SHUT UP.  

"What are the chances of both Aly Raisman and Alicia Sacramone both making it to London?  Five unicorns out of twenty leprechauns."  SHUT UP. 

"Oh wait, Aly Raisman is still here?  Shit."  SHUT UP.

"That is a disaster.  That might be a fall, that might be up to five tenths off."  SHUT UP.

"She said she has no idols.  Not even Khorkina.  KHORKINA."  SHUT UP.  

"Ugh.  She fell on a super nice switch ring.  So fucking silly."  SHUT UP. 

These people have no business commentating on gymnastics. 

What is possibly more upsetting than the Trio's ignorance, however, is the gymnastics community's response to them.  People believe what they say, wholeheartedly, when we should all know better.  Just because Tim Daggett says it DOES NOT MAKE IT SO.  Now THAT is Gymnastics 101. 

Let's discuss the meet, shall we?

I will preface this rant with the fact that I am pro-Jordyn Wieber, and I'm not all that into Aliya Mustafina.  I thought at Worlds, while clearly the deserving winner, she was grossly overscored on almost all events.  She should have won even with real scores, so I don't understand why judges seem so blind to her faults.  I also don't see the ARTISTRY that every is always on about.  Aside from some lovely carriage and upper-body posture, she doesn't DO anything.  How can I rave about her choreography and interpretation of the music when she's NOT MOVING?  

However, I went into the American Cup with an open mind.  I wanted a clean meet, and I wanted fair scores.  I was very excited to see who was the legit winner when both of these requirements were applied.

Unfortunately, this did not happen.  

It was obviously NOT a clean meet, and the scores were out of control. 

There are a lot of ins and outs in gymnastics, especially with the open code, and the million zany deductions there seem to be.  It's a lot to learn, and even the most experienced of fans will inevitably miss something.  

But a lot of what happened this weekend was hard to miss.  

Let's start with vault.  We had a great chance to compare two vaults.  The same vault, done two very different ways.

A leg separation to start, a very early twist off the table, impeccable twisting, with a great landing. 

That vault was followed by this

Which one looks better?  Which one was cleaner, more dynamic, more complete? 

Despite the very obvious differences, the judges only scored these two vaults mere tenths apart.  Now, what is the point of having an open-ended code, with a zillion deductions all worth at least a tenth, if not to differentiate routines that are vastly different?  We might as well go back to giving every vault a 9.962 and have a 14-way tie for first place.

I'm not going to lie, I didn't even cap UB.  Mustafina's UB is HOT, and even without Jordyn's fall, she obviously cleans house on this event.

But it's fair to say that Jordyn won vault, while Aliya won uneven bars, is it not?  1-1.  Let's keep that in mind.

I did do beam and floor, and I'll post those tomorrow.  I don't want to have a gazillion pictures in one post.   

But here's a preview.


  1. So what you need to do is do a live streaming commentary that we can listen to while we watch. Seriously. Please?

  2. Will you marry me? You're amazing!!!!!!!!!! Thank you for saying EXACTLY what I'm thinking!

  3. Echoing Lori Renner...can you please do commentary? You'd actually be funny, admit your biases but keep an open mind, and not spin everything out of proportion. "Silly" that Huang fell on a switch ring???

  4. Love the caps and the overlay. Makes it very clear. And yes, gymnastics commentary leaves a lot to be desired. Coverage in general. We were going nuts in our house when the camera stayed on Grace Williams during Supergirl instead of showing the rest of the routines. Yes, she had won already but those of us that were watching wanted to see the rest of the bunch too!

  5. Ahahaha! Awesome post! I like Aliya, but I do agree with you that I don't quite see the artistry everyone is always raving about. Her beam and bars are nice, but nothing super spectacular. And her vault is a MESS. I noticed that at Worlds and couldn't believe she got silver on that event. But she's still only 16, and I believe she'll improve.

    I am SO impressed by Jordyn's gymnastics. Her vault and beam are world class! I hope she remains healthy through Worlds this year.

    I'd love to see Amanda Borden or Shannon Miller commentating. They're both fantastic at it and actually KNOW what they're talking about!

  6. Yep, don't get the artistry bit either. She just has good comportment. Blah di effing blah. Well put, Spanny!

  7. I'm a a huge Mustafina fan... But also a huge fan of this post. Thanks for putting the time into the photos!

  8. Artistry? Really? Beam is just her standing there (for a really long time) preparing for the next skill. Moving your arm a little doesnt count.

  9. I'm sorry; is the above poster actually referring to a specific gymnast? Because as far as I can tell, standing there preparing for the next move is what EVERYONE is doing on beam these days, with the possible exception of Romania's Raluca Haidu.

  10. This is the first time ive read your blog. Although I agree that Jordyn deserved to win, you sound like an idiot. I kinda hate you

  11. I love your blog. Please never stop writing it and making videos. Just to add my opinion, I find Mustafina quite artistic, before anyone yells at me in there head let me add this, I judge a gymnasts artistry based on their beam not their floor and I find Mustafina's beam very artistic and beautiful (except the dismount but I can't get into that now) Mustafina has so much more potential on FX dance wise (and no FIG by dance I don't mean some leaps and a nice spin!) but all she does is stand in the corner and flail her arms in a choreographed manner..... ok I'm done ranting :)

  12. you can't judge events as 1:1
    Mustafina would have scored MUCH higher with her hit bar routine with anything that Weiber can do.

  13. LMAO Maybe you should shut up too.lol

    Tim and Elfi are trying to re-start the cold war. Let them do it.lol

    Khorkina did take her medal off like a two year old.

  14. Unrelated comment: Spanny, I'd love to know what you think about the new Europeans Stamp. I actually laughed out loud when i saw it. SURELY someone could have done better than this??


    Love your blog
    -Holly, LA-

  15. I remember when I was the only commenter and Rick was pimping you at his blog. Now you are all famous and all. Don't forget the little people.

  16. Good blogs! Keep it up Spanny!

  17. I love it! Can't wait to see the beam and floor post!