by John Walters

Winter Olympics Special: Wind, Luge or Draw

Starting Five

Triple Axel Rose

In Pyeongchang, or as some people call it, P.F. Chang’s, Mirai Nagasu becomes the first American woman and only the third anywhere to land a triple axel in Olympic competition. Nagasu’s effort helped the Americans take a bronze medal in the team skate competition.


Also on the U.S. team were Nathan Chen, siblings Alex and Maia Shibutani and openly gay skater Adam Rippon. Where are all the REAL Americans?, asks U.S. delegation head and V.P. Mike Pence.

2. Red Reign*

*The judges will also accept “Red Takes Gold” or “Gerard Dip ‘n Do”

If you’d asked us who Red Gerard was prior to this weekend, we’d have assumed he was an old-timey college football coach who didn’t allow water during two-a-days. But now we know he’s the first Winter Olympics medalist born in the 21st century.

Here, Gerard is heels over head (look at the photo), so how come they always say it the other way around?

Gerard, in 11th place—last—before his third and final run in Slope Style, nailed it and took home gold. He’s 17 years old and was born in Cleveland, though now he and his six  siblings and parents live in the Colorado Rockies. There were 17 Gerard family members at the event, or more Gerards than competitors.

Gerard is 5’5″, 116 pounds and looks like that Vans-clad skate punk with whom you went to high school. He looks as if he knows a guy, if you know what we mean.

3. All Gusts, No Glory

Imagine training four years and yes, there are other competitions that you partake in, but the Olympics are the paramount. And then you arrive at the hill at Phenix Park in P.F. Chang’s, where the temps are just below zero and the winds are blowing up and sideways at 15 knots. NBCSN is even showing wind sock iso-cams.

The event is normally three rounds, but organizers curtailed it to two rounds. So, immediately, your entire Olympic experience is cut by one-third. And then most competitors had to cancel at least one run mid-run because the wind interrupted their performance and they lost too much momentum to do the following jumps.

Anderson: This is not from P.F. Chang’s, but it demonstrates why snow boarding is a fave of TV execs

Considering that the organizers moved back women’s giant slalom three days due to the same conditions, you wonder why they let this happen. Our assumption: TV.

American Jamie Anderson, who won gold in Sochi in 2014, repeated as the gold medalist, although she only completed one run and it was far more safe than spectacular. All these ladies got robbed.

4. Pole Break, But Not Heartbreak

*The judges will also accept, “Norwegian Could”

See that dude on the ground, in the red circle. His pole just broke in the early stages of the men’s 5,000 cross-country ski race. His name is Simen Kruger and he’s from Norway. He’ll drop back to 34th place. And then he’ll ultimately win going away, taking gold.

Also, this event, too, saw bitterly cold temps. We know, we know, it’s the WINTER Olympics, but it’s reportedly been very nasty there.

4. Luger, Winner

This is Chris Mazdzer, who became the first American male ever to earn a medal in singles luge. Mazdzer, who finished in 13th place in both the 2010 Vancouver and 2014 Sochi Games, also finished 18th in the World Cup standings this season and never made a podium. But this weekend in P.F. Chang’s, he earned silver.

Only a month ago the 29 year-old Saranac Lake, N.Y., resident had posted on social media that he was near despair and was having a difficult time believing in himself. In short, it was tough sledding for his luge. Now he’ll always be the first male U.S. luge singles medalist. Well done, Chris.



 Killer Queen

Up in Toronto, Canada, they’ve arrested a 66 year-old divorced gay landscaper and part-time mall Santa named Bruce McArthur who has been charged in the murders of five men but may have killed dozens more. When McArthur, who police believe used dating apps to lure is prey, was arrested by police on January 18 at his 30th-floor apartment, he had a potential victim handcuffed to his bed and the date did not seem happy to be there.

We asked our favorite Torontoan (Torontan?) and frequent MH behind-the-scenes contributor, Moose, if she was the serial killer and her reply was, “If I were the serial killer, you’d have been the first person I killed.”

Music 101

Prince of Darkness

Acoustic guitar heroines? Indigo Girls were certainly that. Here’s the Georgia duo, Amy and Emily, in their prime.

Remote Patrol


TCM 8 p.m.

In yet another Oscar-winning performance, Daniel Day-Lewis portrays a 19th-century legend who drinks the South’s milkshake. By the way, Happy 209th Birthday, Abe!


10:15 p.m. TCM

Elizabeth Taylor. Rock Hudson. James Dean. Any questions?


4 thoughts on “IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

  1. OLYMPICS (some thoughts & blatant opinions, henceforth ‘STBT’) :

    The Opening Ceremony was underwhelming to this viewer. Granted, it was MUCH better than 2008’s summer Seoul OC which was so awful I still have flashbacks. The best thing this time was seeing the American team troop out in all their Ralph Lauren finery (yeah, I’m a homer) & seeing the thousands of drones coming together in the night sky to form 1st, a snowboarder & then the Olympic rings. Awesome! But here’s the thing, 1st I thought it was just one more digital thing which I AM SO OVER for Olympic ceremonies! I want to see hundreds-thousands of locals dressed up in gaudy outfits bangin’ a drum, dancing or forming a synchronized pattern on the stadium floor/ground all while sporting ear-to-ear smiles AND looks of abject petrification that they will “mess up” on international TV viewed by BILLIONS. ENOUGH with the fake digital sh*t!

    By the time I actually get my head around the 14 hour time difference & stop having to remind myself “ok, it’s 9PM HERE but 11 AM over there”, it will be during the Closing Ceremony. 😉

    I purposely did not read or watch anything ahead of time about the P-Chang venues (except watching the 2 skiing World Cup events the past 2 years) just so I would not be influenced by someone else’s viewpoint. Here’s mine – it seems that ALL the outdoor venues are ALL in the same place, smushed next to each other. AND that place looks like an unattractive industrial park covered by man-made snow. (I did read something this morning that makes me think at least some alpine skiing races will be somewhere else (yeah!), but of course I already disclosed my less-than-positive opinion of that venue last week). Look at that XC skiing photo above – isn’t that the LEAST attractive XC Olympics venue you’ve ever seen in YOUR LIFE? And I think I finally figured out why I think the mountains are so unattractive – it’s the TREES! There are almost no everGREEN/pine tree covered mountain vistas but instead you see sparse skinny brown trees!

    Ok, but what about the competitions you ask? Well, of the ones not suspended & rescheduled due to EXTREME wind conditions, most were pretty great. However, I will not lie – I’m not a fan of curling & that biathlon is a HUGE sport (attended in person by thousands & viewed by MILLIONS (!) on TV) in Europe baffles the hell out of me, so I won’t be chatting much about either of those. 🙂 The skating venues are dressed up nicely (purple bunting/signage with blue trim) only to be outdone by the great performances. Ok sure, I believe American Adam Rippon was ROBBED last night in the Team Event Men’s Free Skate (he by FAR outskated the Russian & Canadian who both fell on their asses AND fell out of other jumps) but that’s Figure Skating for you. And sure, the Canadian Ice Dancers are superb on the ice, but I just can’t stand them! In 2014, they snarked about our very own GOLD MEDAL WINNING ice dancers & I will never forgive their arrogant/smirky asses. So there!

    And speaking of figure skating, I’ll tell ya’ll right now that the 2 Russian girls will probably go 1-2 in Ladies Singles & unlike most other skating aficionados, I’m not a fan of either! One girl (Medvedeva) won almost every event the past 2 years & while most seem to coo over her “passion” & “technical brilliance”, all I see is the SAME damn facial expression throughout ALL her performances (a look of severe constipation combined with the Home Alone “ohhh nooooo”). Plus, she throws her arm over her head in almost every jump. This USED to be an awe-inspiring move (because it’s so difficult) but when you use it for EVERY jump it becomes annoying & boring! The other Russian girl (the one in the ballerina outfits) also throws the arm up, so I guess they teach that now over there. But hey, don’t let my grumpy opinion keep you from watching! 🙂

    As for the Snowboarding Slopestyle – the men’s event was hampered by the weather conditions but at least their event showed most of the guys doing their regular runs & all 3 medalists did pretty awesome. As for the women’s event last night (today for them), it was a TRAVESTY! It should have been rescheduled like the Alpine races! They are lucky a girl was not killed. NOT ONE RIDER was able to get down the course doing anything close to their usual competitive runs, MOST either crashed or had to pull out to keep from getting killed. SHAME on the FIS & SHAME on the IOC for allowing that travesty to take place at the OLYMPICS, the lifelong dream for all those competitors.

    One final tidbit. I was watching the Luge yesterday & was thrilled that an American was even in the Top 5 leading into the final 2 runs. On Mazder’s final run, NBC’s professional TV commenter excitedly exclaimed that Chris was “having the Olympics of his life!” Duncan Kennedy, a former luger & now NBC’s luge “analyst” commented back that “most important is that his runs were consistent”. LOL! I think Duncan was so shocked any American man finally won a luge medal that when it was a guy who had won nothing the past 2 years (or ever I think), he couldn’t quite believe it.

      • Whoops, I meant the Opening Ceremony at the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Sheesh. ONLY 2 decades off. 😉 I’m blaming PTSD from watching (& oh, listening – the “music” haunts my nightmares still) that on TV. By FAR the worst Opening Ceremony I’ve ever watched.

        I bet though that if I watched it again (which I would not do unless someone paid me 100 AMZN shares, ok, 50), there are segments that are great. It’s just what I DO remember has killed off everything else.

  2. I’m just hoping that our rivalry with Russia during these Olympics will remind our CiC that Russia is not our friend and success is not defined as becoming more like Russia (i.e. Oligarchy with big military parades.)

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