Posts Tagged ‘JR Celski’

JR Celski Tattoo Heats Up The Internet

JR CelskiI’ve been watching and learning about U.S. short track speedskater JR Celski during the 2010 Winter Olympic Games. I’m always on the lookout for people who are about to have a breakthrough on their advance to fame. I want to be there at the beginning. I knew as soon as I saw JR that he was someone who could gain celebrity status.

Of course he was already well known to people who follow speedskating, but not so much to the general public. That changed a little when he won the bronze medal in the 1500m and it was well publicized how miraculous it was to get a medal considering his leg had been severely injured only five months before. However, his stock really shot up, strangely really, after he was disqualified in the semifinals of the 1000m. He unzipped his suit and revealed a sexy chest and big tattoo and the internet went crazy as people wanted to know more about him. They thought he was hot, hot, hot.

The basic design of the tattoo is the sun and star combination from the flag of the Philippines. Within the sun pattern is the coat of arms of the Republic of Poland.  Celski combined the two elements to reflect his multi-ethnic ancestry. His mother is a Filipino-American and his father is  Polish-American. 

You can read more about the JR Celski tattoo <- here.

Considering he’s in the same sport and events as the number one American star of the Games, Apolo Anton Ohno, it would be expected that he would be overshadowed and overlooked during the Games. However, people who get paid to spot future stars had clearly marked him for a bright future. During the Olympics he was in national commercials for McDonald’s and Proctor & Gamble. The week before he was on The Biggest Loser. The week before that he was chosen to be one of the athletes  to appear on national television to model the ceremony uniforms for Team USA. We can expect to see more of him.

JR Celski Encourages Fat People

JROlympic short track speedskater JR Celski was on NBC’s The Biggest Loser as one of several Olympians who made special guest appearances to encourage the contestants in their efforts to exercise and lose weight. JR was able to not only show them how to use a specific piece of exercise equipment but also to inspire them by telling his own remarkable story.

It was in season 9, episode 6, of the hit show, when the cast went to the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. There they met several athletes, like JR Celski, who helped to push them to do the best they could in succeeding on the show.

At the start JR Celski’s's segment, the contestants were taken into a gymnasium where a set of slide boards were arrayed. There the host Alison Sweeney told them the aphorism of the day to get them ready for the day’s pop challenge. She said, “Becoming an Olympic champion boils down to one thing: on the big day you have to push harder than everyone else.” The key word, as it would be learned, was “push”.

JRAlison introduced JR, and asked him to tell his story. He told about starting inline skating at age 3 and then getting into short track speedskating. He then related the tale of how he had injured himself severely a few months before, on the last day of the Olympic Trials. Having cut his leg to the bone, he ended up in a hospital, unable to move his leg. He showed the 6″ scar as the proof of the incident. “It was the worst thing I’ve ever experienced, but I bounced back. I guess it’s just proven to me, that no matter what situation you’re in, you’ve got to get back up. And that’s all you guys have to do, is to be dedicated to what you do and then really, really go for it.”

The pop challenge would be using the slide board, and so JR Celski explained how to use one. He stepped on one and appeared to slide right off of it, but said he was just kidding. However, he did warn that it was as slippery as ice. One of the hefties said JR made it look so simple, as it should be for an Olympic athlete.

As the contest began, JR took in a deep breath and grasped his hands nervously. He was not used to this kind of workout group, as he saw many of them fall over. He gently gave them some general support: “Come on, push through the pain guys.” JR clapped politely as some were able to move back and forth and not topple to the ground. Eventually a gold, silver, and bronze winner were declared and the challenge was complete. Throughout, JR Celski was his usual sweetness.

Bob and Jillian encouraged the viewing audience to contribute to the United States Olympic Committee and most importantly, watch the Olympics on NBC.

2010 Olympics Opening Ceremony

Stephane LambielI love watching a fantastic spectacle, and since there is none bigger than an opening or closing Olympic ceremony, watching the 2010 Olympics Opening Ceremony was must-see TV. It was well understood by everyone after the Beijing games that no other ceremony in our lifetime is likely to even come close to the enormity of its grandeur. However, with the expectations set appropriately, the Vancouver opening should still have been, well, “Olympic”.

Or so I thought.

There were a few good moments, but a lot of it seemed to miss the mark. The overriding problem was that it was held indoors. A Winter Games ceremony should be held outdoors. End of story. Pumping snow in the air during the show and keeping the temperature cold enough inside so that the athletes wouldn’t get heat exhaustion while wearing their fancy uniforms didn’t make up for it.

The beginning of the program suggested that it was unlikely that there would be innovation in presentation. It was a welcome from the local so-called “First Nations” (Indian) tribes. Lord love them, but doing a specific Indian segment is now cliche for Olympics in North America. It’s been done enough. A better way to demonstrate inclusion and diversity would be to do something with all the different ethnic groups mixed together. However, I must admit they sure put their hearts into their dancing, doing it the entire duration of the entrance parade of the athletes.

The athletes’ entrance is always interesting, seeing people from the various countries that are represented. Some enter very conservatively and some enter with a lot of excitement. One example of an excited athlete was Stephane Lambiel (above), a Swiss figure skater and that country’s flag bearer. He whipped his flag around and you could tell he would be putting a lot of spin are flare in his performances on the ice as well.

The entrance of Team USA was marred by the appearance of their Ralph Lauren uniforms. The huge polo pony brand emblem was incredibly tacky. However, cute little J.R. Celski, one of the American short track speed skaters, looked okay in his.

After the athletes entered, the entertainment part of the show commenced and for the most part it dreadfully dull. People wandering around the floor or hanging from wires for interminable lengths of time. Even the musical numbers were dull, other than the fiddling and the dancing to it. By its nature it added a little more fervor, but it certainly was nothing more than what you could see in a run of the mill Broadway show. The most interesting effect was the use of the video projectors on the floor and other structural surfaces. The use of the video on the floor during the performance by the solo aerialist Thomas Saulgrain was kind of cool.

I didn’t think I would be blogging about it, but my full assessment at the first link above.

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