Inside Track — It started out as a joke, but now, two New York comedians are actually building a Nancy Kerrigan-Tonya Harding museum in a 25-foot-long hallway in their apartment in Brooklyn.
Viviana Olen, 28, and Matt Harkins, 27, said they were inspired to transform their under-utilized, under-decorated hallway into a museum dedicated to the 1994 Olympic rivals of knee-whacking fame after seeing a “30 for 30″ documentary about the figure-skating scandal on Netflix.
“We became instantly obsessed,” Viviana told the Track. “Then we thought it would be kind of funny to make the Tonya Harding-Nancy Kerrigan museum. At first we thought we’d just hang some pictures on the wall and when our friends came over they would think it was funny.”
But then the duo put their idea up for funding on Kickstarter and their ice queen dream went viral. …
[T]he budding archivists were contacted by a number of people who had Nancy-Tonya artwork, memorabilia and other items to donate to the cause.
“A journalist who covered the 1994 Olympics gave us backstage passes from the 1994 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Detroit,” Viviana said.
That would be where Kerrigan was attacked by a baton-wielding thug connected to Harding and her ex-husband, Jeff Gillooly, aka The Whack Heard ‘Round the World.
She also gave the museum a pin from the same event and vintage copies of Figure Skating magazines featuring the Stoneham ice princess and her blonde nemesis. Others have sent along a parody movie done about the attack, a diorama depicting Tonya doing a triple axel (she was the first American woman to land one in competition), a cross-stitch, event programs, ticket stubs, buttons and other memorabilia. …
Both Matt and Viviana said they are doing the museum respectfully and to honor the two skaters’ accomplishments — not to be snarky.
“We’re coming at this with so much love and respect,” Viviana said. “We hope everyone knows that.”
If there’s one thing Viviana Olen doesn’t have to add, it’s that this museum will be done with love and respect and not snark. As a fellow Tonya-Nancy-obsessed skating fan, I recognize in her and Matt Harkins the same reverence for the subject that I have. As I mentioned a while back, this chapter in our nation’s history was the first real test of the young marriage between myself and my Beguiling Irish Rose. We were consumed with the story. Even pre-internet, we followed it 24/7 for months as the drama unfolded. So it’s refreshing to see another couple – fellow comics, no less – with the same passion for the subject matter as we have.
My only regret is I didn’t have the wherewithal to start a museum to honor this momentous event. The history of the Tonya and Nancy soap opera needs to be preserved for future generations. As they say, those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. So I’m happy someone took the initiative to educate the masses like this.
I’m not a huge museum guy. I have no desire to go to New York to see the Metropolitan Museum of Art or any of that. But I will make the pilgrimage to Virginia and Matt’s apartment to see their collection of press passes, dioramas, cross stitches, buttons and memorabilia like Iowans going to look at the Field of Dreams. And I know other skating fans will follow suit. For it is money we have; and peace we lack.
So thank you to these two great visionaries. And we will see you soon.
I know I shouldn’t say this because it’s one of the most controversial and divisive issues of our times, but I am not a fan of Adam Sandler movies. I honestly feel that ever since “The Waterboy” he’s just been mailing it in and taking advantage of his audience. Like he’s performing a social experiment to see how infantile, stupid and just plain terrible his movies can be and still top the $100 million mark. This is an exercise to prove my point: The next time Sandler releases a trailer, time how many seconds into it he gets hit in the balls with something. And believe me, I love dumb humor. But he’s not even pretending to try any more. It usually starts arguments when I say this, but I defy anyone to defend the celluloid toilet paper that was “Jack and Jill,” “Grown Ups” or “Blended.” You cannot.
OK, that rant out of the way, I laughed out loud through this whole thing. Even the shots-to-the-pills part. Maybe this really is hilarious or maybe I’m just nostalgic for the days of “Happy Gilmore” when Adam Sandler was actually making the effort. But regardless, it’s good to see him put the band back together.
Boston Marathon bombing survivor Jeff Bauman joined the Dennis & Callahan show on Friday morning to talk about the Dzhokhar Tsarnaev trial, what it was like being on the stand Thursday and his life now.
Jeff Bauman testified Thursday in the Dzhokhar Tsarnaev trial. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Boston Marathon bombing survivor Jeff Bauman joined the Dennis & Callahan show on Friday morning to talk about the Dzhokhar Tsarnaev trial, what it was like being on the stand Thursday and his life now. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
For some of the survivors, being able to take the stand in the trial and face Tsarnaev was something they had been waiting to do for a long time. For Bauman, he said he was nervous, as he had never been on a stand before. He also said he was most scared of seeing the pictures.
“We kind of locked eyes and he looked kind of, his little smug look, but what can you do, that’s his only move at that point,” Bauman said.
But after that, according to Bauman, he did what he did with everyone.
“He just [sits] around and rolls his pen on the table and kind of just sits there,” he said.
For Bauman, he wasn’t thinking about facing Tsarnaev in the same way that some of the other survivors were because doing so doesn’t put a cap on the situation for him. In fact, he said if he could bypass the whole trial, “it would be awesome,” because he has his “life to live and stuff to do.”
“I wasn’t thinking about that,” he reiterated. “I fight this war every day. It’s a constant battle for me and same with Bill [Richard] and all the other survivors, it’s a war. This doesn’t end, putting on your legs every morning doesn’t end, and thinking about the people that you lost doesn’t end.
“It’s a constant war, and this is a battle that I think that we won and we still have to fight our war,” Bauman continued, “and you know what, every hour I think of it and I think about Bill all the time and his family and it rips me up, but you just kind of have to use it as strength and keep on carrying on. I think that’s what it’s all about, I think about it all the time, more than twice a day. It’s my life.”
Bauman stressed again that what he and the other survivors go through doesn’t begin and end with the trial, but that it’s nice to see them and be able to talk with them.
“We all fight our battles every day and, like I said, we’re winning this war and we’re all doing great,” he said. “It’s just really fun to see everybody and talk, and with my daughter, it’s really great when people get to hold her and see her. She really brightens up the room. It’s just really fun to see everybody and we all have a very cool connection. We have kind of like a love connection, we have like certain love for each other and it’s very cool to see everybody.”
Life with his wife, Erin, and daughter, Nora, has been “amazing” and “wonderful” for Bauman. They bring him so much joy, he said.
Jeff Bauman joined us to discuss his testimony yesterday.
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Michele discussed the heart wrenching testimony of Bill Richard.
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The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane.
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The guys opened the show by discussing the latest in the Marathon Bombing trial.
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FRIDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Celtics at Pelicans, 8 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Suns at Nets, 8 p.m. (ESPN) College basketball: Yale at Harvard, 7 p.m. (NESN) College basketball: Akron at Kent State, 7 p.m. (ESPN2) College basketball: Morehead State vs. Murray State, 7:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Texas Tech at Baylor, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Belmont vs. Eastern Kentucky, 9:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
College hockey: Minnesota at Ohio State, 5 p.m. (ESPNU)
College hockey: North Dakota at Miami (Ohio), 6:30 p.m. (CBSSN)
College hockey: Denver at Saint Cloud State, 9 p.m. (CBSSN)
MLB exhibition: Yankees at Phillies, 1 p.m. (MLB Network)
Soccer: Women, United States vs. Norway, noon (FS1)
AROUND THE WEB:
— Curt Schilling acknowledged he was concerned how his daughter would feel when he decided to go after the Twitter trolls who made vulgar comments about her. Any hesitation on her part, however, appears to have subsided.
“It means a lot that [my dad] defended me, but that’s just what father do for their daughters,” Gabby told People.com. “He has been, and always will be, there for me no matter what.”
Schilling’s wife, Shonda, said it was “devastating” to see Gabby return home from school in tears Monday after learning of the comments.
“I was stunned that anyone would say these things, knowing people would see them,” Shonda told People.com. “Then angry they ever felt it was OK to ever say those things to my daughter. … No one deserves this! It’s never OK to speak to anybody like that, especially a 17-year-old girl.”
The backlash against the Twitter harassers has been severe, with suspensions and widespread humiliation for the offenders, allowing the Schillings to take some solace that a strong message has been delivered.
“I’m very glad that this all happened,” Gabby said. “The amount of awareness that’s being spread right now about cyberbullying and bullying in general from this situation is incredible. I’ve had girls and parents and adults reaching out to me saying, ‘Thank you so much for what you and your dad are doing, spreading awareness to these kids about what their words can do and what consequences they have.’ ”
Gabby said she has mixed feelings about how much the harassers have been punished.
“I do and I don’t feel bad,” she said. “It’s really sad that one thing they said could cost them their entire career on a sports team or their job, but I think it’s even sadder that they don’t think that should have happened. … They think, ‘Oh, it’s just social media. It’s just a tweet.’ People don’t realize how serious social media is.”
On the Grizzlies‘ ensuing possession, Marc Gasol hit a 10-footer with less than a second remaining to give his team a two-point victory.
Rockets coach Kevin McHale was incensed after the game, yelling at the officials at midcourt and then slamming a water bottle against a table during his postgame press conference.
“We drove hard to the basket,” McHale said. “We did what we wanted to do. We wanted to get to the rim, and they didn’t call a foul.”
Harden said he was “grabbed on my arm and nothing was called.”
“At the end of the game, I think everybody is watching the ball,” Harden added. “Everybody in the entire crowd, everybody in the gym is watching the ball. I don’t know what to say. It’s frustrating, man, when you fight so hard to come back and you have an opportunity to win the game and it’s frustrating.”
— Longtime TNT sideline reporter Craig Sager returned to the air Thursday night after receiving treatment for leukemia for almost a year.
“I’m 60 yards shorter off the tee, but I fee good,” he told The Associated Press upon arriving at the United Center for the Bulls’ game against the Thunder.
The 63-year-old Sager, known for his loud outfits, has been with the network for 34 years and hopes to resume his busy workload.
“It’s not just the games. It’s the people,” Sager said when asked what he missed most. “The NBA is such a family. I try to get there three hours before the game, talk with the ushers and the security guards, the coaches and the fans. … I just missed the whole atmosphere. I like being there.”
ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On March 6, 1986, which Bruins forward recorded his 600th NHL point with two goals in a 5-4 overtime loss to the Nordiques at Boston Garden?