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Nov 13, 2014

A Self-Indulgent Post


Today--November 13--marks the fourth anniversary of my first post on this blog. Forgive me for this rather superfluous moment of navel-gazing, but allow me to indulge myself. I'd like to thank the Academy, my stylist, Nikolai Morozov (for providing me with so much grist for this mill of a blog), and most of all, my faithful readers for sticking with me throughout all these years.

Anyway, to celebrate this occasion, here are some hopefully fun and heretofore undisclosed facts about this blog:

-the all-time most viewed post on this blog is Girl in Red (thanks, Slate!)

-I originally planned this blog to exist for only two years

-my personal favorite posts I've written are Happy Koninkrijksdag! and The Truth About Lambiel

-perhaps not so coincidentally, the first hate mail I've received from writing this blog was the result of disgruntled Lambiel fans reacting to The Truth About Lambiel

Nov 11, 2014

DIY Music Selection

So you're a figure skater needing to choose music for your new program(s) this season. The vast repertoire of the world's music is at your fingertips . . . which, undoubtedly, is a daunting prospect. The abundance of choice is staggering: free choice may form the bedrock of the capitalist system in which we reside, but there's a whole lot of music out there to choose from. The feeling is akin to being a lifelong communist being exposed to an American supermarket for the very first time: where do we even begin? How do we even decide? The tyranny of choice can be oppressive indeed.

But fear not, young padawan--Morozombie is here to help with a simple way to choose your figure skating music for the season. All you need to do is take a simple quiz. Add one point for each "yes" answer to the following questions unless otherwise indicated:

Nov 9, 2014

Train through the Pain

Sport occupies a particular space in our collective consciousness. With the declining grasp of religion in the developed world, sports, to paraphrase Karl Marx, has become the opiate of the masses, insofar as sports occupies the liminal territory that blurs together the physical and the ecstatic. Figure skating is in particular an excellent example of such, given that it is a sport that encompasses both athletic endeavor and performance art. Witness the self-transcendent anguish that comes from watching a fall on a quadruple jump, or the complete immersion that comes with watching an emotional, superbly-choreographed program performed cleanly at the Olympics.

And so we watch figure skating with a certain sort of absorption fueled by more fevered emotions that, in an earlier time, may have been channeled towards the ecstasy and violence of religious rituals. This emotion gives rise to an implicit bond that is formed between figure skater and fan: we offer our idols adoration, support, and worship. In exchange, they devote maximum effort to the sport in order to give us the transcendent performances we so desire.

Nov 4, 2014

Oct 31, 2014

"New and Improved"

While watching Samantha Cesario's Carmen at Skate America last week, I was suddenly aware of a plague that has befallen us. No, I'm not talking about Ebola, or the rash of (undoubtedly horrible) Phantom of the Opera programs that have infected the figure skating rank and file this season. No, I'm talking about the new and near-universally ghastly trend of figure skaters tinkering with and recycling old, beloved programs from the past. The intentions are good, but the results are more often than not disappointing. Why? Often, what makes a program so brilliant and beloved is a serendipitous confluence of music and choreography that falls into place with a certain undefinable je ne sais quoi. Tinker with one piece and the whole artifice comes crashing down. So, with clouded eyes and empty hearts, let's take a look back at some beautiful programs humbled by lesser imitations: