A random girl's random gymnastics ramblings.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Beyond the Routine: Emotinal Roughness

For your enjoyment, part two of our delicious Mary Lee Tracy/Miller saga.  We pick up right where we left off last week, with Mary Lee having a meltdown because her busted old digital wall clock stopped working.

This whole gym is a lesson in investment.  It's clear that nothing has been upgraded since 1996, and it shows in her athletes' performances as well as their injuries.  But who cares about upgrading mats when the precious wall clock is broken?!  (A source tells us the Coke machine is also continually busted.)

Our best friend Uncle Tim points out that no less than three different types of tape have been used in order to preserve the valuable clock.  Mary Lee is super stressed out about the loss of the clock, because how else will the girls know how long they have to go to the bathroom?

MLT lines up her cattle, and pulls Lexie/Sophie Lee to the front for "Quote of the Day."  Apparently they have one every day, and Mary Lee sent this one to Lexie the night before.

Lexie reads some generic quote about attitudes and flat tires, and Mary Lee insists that she explain the quote's true meaning.  There is a recurring theme where MLT tries to be a teacher of many things outside the rhelm of gymnastics.  Mary Lee explains that this is a great opportunity for the girls to get some public speaking experience, because that is very important in the world of elite gymnastics.

We're treated to some footage of tumbling practice, which is the actual awesome part of the show.  It's fascinating to watch elite training in any gym, really.  We see Lexie training her new super difficult passes.  Now, one might think that it takes physical preparation and training in order to perform a double-double on floor.  You would be incorrect.  Mary Lee hollers at Human Sophie Lee to "USE YOUR MIND!" to get that tricky skill around.

Lexie is followed up by Nice Toepointy Girl, who sits her layout-layout pass.

She asks if she can do it again, but Mary Lee takes the opportunity to make her feel like shit instead, and reminds her and everyone else that you only get one chance in gymnastics/life.

Lexie Lee Tracy does a somewhat open, but obvious IMO, double tuck that MLT has beef with.  What Mary Lee says seems to make sense, that it doesn't matter what skill you choose, just do it well and with intention.  She just seems so much kinder to Lexie than anyone else in the gym.  She calmly asks Lexie when she switched the double pike to a double tuck, and Lexie responds with "Since verification."  Read: Martha had me change it.  Mary Lee just loves that, I'm sure.  She explains that 16 year olds will be 16 year olds, and Lexie can do whatever she wants.  I wonder if she'll share that same attitude with Amelia/Phoebe Lee Tracy...

We revisit the clock saga, this time with Mary Lee's sister attempting to fix the ancient piece of shit.  MLT points out that her sister is lazy and sits down all day behind a desk and computer, so the mere THOUGHT of her standing on her feet to fix a dumb old clock is laughable.

Poor Pixie faceplants a double pike, and immediately shows dread all over her face.  However, she calmly stands and listens to Courtney give her some undecipherable corrections.

At least Courtney attempts to actually coach her, albeit while seemingly saluting Hilter with a cross behind her.  The irony is not lost on me.  MLT just yells at Pixie to get the fuck off of her cheap floor, and is demoted to the tumble tramp.

Mary Lee launches into a rant about her "wannabe elites" and how, while they're not "crybabies" per se, they do cry 100% of the time and MLT's fucking sick of it.  She explains that the only reason to cry is if you're hurt.

You would know, wouldn't you Mary Lee?  She makes a good point about controlling emotions when necessary, but damned if she's not making every poor child's meltdowns worse.  But Dr. Lee Tracy's theme for the day is EMOTIONAL TOUGHNESS, so there shan't be a missed opportunity to teach!

Dr. Lee Tracy reminds Pixie of their last sports psych class, which is seemingly taught by Mary Lee herself, and their discussion of fear of failure.  A sign of a great teacher is one who needs to tell her student that she "doesn't learn anything."  Whose fault is that, Doctor?

Mary Lee starts to give us muddled feedback regarding crying in the gym.  She admits her "best kid" is a huge crier, but it's ok because that's just how she's wired.

"Some of these kids are mentally tough, some of them are emotionally tough.  Some of them are mentally tough."

Mary Lee pearls of wisdom, folks.

Dr. Lee Tracy is not done with Pixie yet.  She brings over a friend to further humiliate the poor kid.

Taking a small respite from the crying theme, we watch Amelia work on UB for awhile.  I'm starting to realize that I kind of love her.  If not for her gymnastics, then for her WTF face and her ability to give zero fucks about the awful things Mary Lee is spouting at her.

Amelia is working on stalder tkatchevs, and doesn't even need her coach's help to know what she's doing wrong.  That doesn't stop Mary Lee from trying to tell her, which just ends up in her parroting what Amelia just said.

Well no shit.  That's what she just said!  Mary Lee continues to spout some shit, but Amelia just offers her WTF face.

MLT asks Amelia how many more connections she wants to do, and "Meals" cheekily answers "One."  She has a hidden chutzpah, and I enjoy it.

Speaking of "Meals," we learn how Amelia was given her nickname.

Mary Lee is not impressed.  Amelia tries to throw in that it's also sort of connected to her real name, but MLT cuts her off and explains that when the team used to go out to eat (sure) Amelia would eat off of everyone else's plates (as if they had their own,) hence the name. Then Mary Lee smacks the shit out of her.

Now it's time to focus on the juniors again.  Mary Lee is submitting their skills in order to get them into the national team developmental camps.  Now, some gyms have fancy technology like video cameras and screens for replays.  Not CGA.  Mary Lee busts out the star of the the first episode, her trusty iPhone.

That frees up some money so that she can get her clock fixed.  Pixie is about to take her turn, and Mary Lee screams at her to concentrate.  It appears that Pixie does, but we'll never know because immediately after telling her to concentrate, MLT interrupts her to reiterate the concept of hitting under pressure. 

Pixie eventually gets to take her turn, and does fairly well.  Mary Lee doesn't say as much, but she doesn't tear Pixie a new one.  Poor Pixie doesn't even know what to do with semi-positive feedback.  She attempts a smile.

Monday's training is FINALLY over, and Mary Lee runs down the day's events with faithful Courtney McCool by her side.

Lexie didn't cry, so there's that.  Amelia did nothing great at all, and it's super awesome that Mary Lee felt the need to point that out in front of the group.

And then Poof gets hailed for crying.  Because it's a good thing if certain girls cry, it's horrible and a sign of terrible weakness if others do it.

"Sometimes it's ok to let it out.  And then other people... you can't let it out so much."

So there you have it.  Were you able to keep up?  Because I had a tough time, what with trying to keep track of who's allowed to express emotion and who is not.  Maybe next week's "Sports Psych" class taught by Dr. Lee Tracy will help us understand further.


  1. Is there a link where you can watch this? I think it would be really interesting (read: hilarious)

  2. I don't even think I want to watch this. Aside from not wanting to give Gymnastike my money, it can't possibly better or more confusing/random than it is in these recaps. God bless you, MLT.

  3. There's a pirating of the first ep going around Tumblr...

    1. i'm sorry to ask this, but link? pleasepleasepleasepleaseplease

  4. Here's the link to the first episode: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B1ckbY0-OWpNVVhiZGdFRWNpdEE/edit


  6. Perhaps there is a reason spanny has not posted the link here.

  7. I love Amelia and would love to see her have a great elite career (even though I wish she had a coach).

    I didn't notice Brianna Brown anywhere. Is she injured/taking a break?

  8. the lexie/sophie lee tracy and amelia/phoebe lee tracy comparisons are my favourite part <3 also am developing a love for meels... spanny keep em coming!

  9. This blog is great! Sure doesn't appear that Poof is the crier of the group since Courtney refers to her having to be physically beaten to cry. How strange to applaud someone for crying must of been one of Mary Lee's personal goals to finally get this kid to cry.

  10. Is there also an illegal video of part 2 and maybe part 3 ??

  11. Amelia rocks. She is the best antidote for the self absorbed pseudo-psychobabble tyrant.


    Spanny, these recaps are So Important. Please don't ever stop.

  13. I loved too that after MLT asked if Amelia had done anything great that day some one(possibly Lexie?) said something like Amelia does great everyday. Nice to see the girl getting along even if their coach is crazy.

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