Before the Hays Thou Shall Not 1. Law Defeated. 2. Inside of Thigh 3. Lace Lingerie 4. Dead Man 5. Narcotics 6. Drinking 7. Exposed Bosom 8. Gambling 9. Pointing Gun 10. Tommy Gun

Before the Hays
This is the Night to be yourself

Is heartbreak inevitable? Where would we be without all this pain and self-loathing? I’m not sure if I would want to be self-loving and irresistibly lovable. What would life be like if I received the appropriate credit and praise for all of my hard work or apathy for that matter? What would it be like to succeed at everything I tried and supported by everyone I loved? What would it be to have a night of utter perfection?

I would be Evan Lysacek. But as much as everyone seems to love Evan I don’t identify with him at all. I listened to his perfect responses to Plushenko’s talking smack about him last night. His answers were so perfectly choreographed and rehearsed. So honorable, so noble. So high ground. His hero told him he wasn’t worthy and he showed no amount of pain or acknowledgment of Plushenko’s point. Do I think he deserved the gold, of course, but the Russian did have a point and I wanted to see him struggle with that.

So as the endorsements rush in, I just want to say something to all the products looking for a spokes person. I would not buy something that Evan endorsed simply because I don’t identify with him. Nor do I particularly care to be a flawless, tall man in spandex and feathers. Boitano had a sweet awkwardness to him. He looked kind of goofy. Goofy people can win too was the message I got.

Weir’s interview with Bob Costas about the whole Plushenko experience was mesmerizing. Johnny seemed to have a clear understanding of the history of Men’s Figure Skating and the expectations and culture. He said, without saying, that Evan won the Image of Men’s Figure Skating Gold. I loved it. Weir is so compelling in his passion for the sport and his passion for bringing everything he has to it.
He knows his image and who he is pushes peoples feelings around. But he wants that, he wants to move you with his sport, he wants to as he said, “Take you on a journey”. And that got me. With all that has been going on with stupid television programing, idiotic scandals and daily economic pressure it was great to hear that someone cared that I was transported out of all of this. And not with blue people in 3D that are depressingly fake. He was going to skate me to another place where all of my life’s disappointment didn’t matter for a few minutes. It wasn’t going to win, but it was beautiful and it was for us.

If Plushenko in his brashness transported you to the highs of the sport, Weir took you on a journey of it’s beauty. And that’s what I love. The one’s who don’t hide anything about who they are for the image of a sport. They say Evan won because of the total package. Well fuck that. Fuck the package. I’m tired of buying packages. I want the real thing. I want to buy something that is going to take me on a journey and transport me into the glories of who they are and not into another monthly plan for $19.95 with a two year service contract and a $130 cancellation fee.

I want an ego maniac who is painfully insecure in his artistic contribution and a delicate little angel on ice who rejects the pressures of masculinity. This is what I identify with as a consumer, being in touch with my flaws, not divorcing myself into an unsustainable lifestyle. All image and no self, I give you Tiger Woods. Remember Michael Jordan? Remember what was so great about him? He was kind of a jack ass. You could see him struggling to hold his ego in check and for the most part he did. But it was hard for him. The baseball attempt was a fantastic disaster, but it was all him. That was greatness.

Which makes me think of Cary Grant. A great icon who transported you and was more than the sum of his parts.
Once told by an interviewer, “Everybody would like to be Cary Grant,” Grant is said to have replied, “So would I.”

My point being that we shouldn’t buy into the package. Cary didn’t and that’s what made him great. We always understood that we were in on the joke. He was an image and he knew how to wink and let you know it was just and image. You still saw him. And that was important.

So dear advertisers:

Please think about your endorsements. Make sure that your product is being endorsed by someone who is representing your product. If your product is the essence of a journey Wier is your man. If your product is the essence of boldness and unapologetic ego and athleticism Plashenko is your man (although I doubt an American company is going to go after a Russian endorsement). If you are looking for Cary Grant, Evan is not him. He is a guy who killed himself to be what everyone wanted him to be, topped off with a Vera Wang costume, red carpet ready. He’ll be perfect for a first guest on the new new Tonight Show with Jay Leno and is ripe for a scandal or a “coming out”. I mean seriously who is his audience? Closeted men? I’m not saying he didn’t deserve to win, I’m just not sure he works as an endorsement. What would he endorse?

So in celebration of the genuine article I recommend Cary Grant’s film debut in which he ironically enough plays an Olympic Athlete.
This is the Night (1932)

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