But anyway... thought you'd seen the last of the Sochi posts, hadn't you? Well, the LOLz are on you! Not only am I suffering from Post-Olympics Depression (the struggle is real, my friends), but the Sochi 2014 Paralympics are rapidly approaching, i.e. they start on FRIDAY! So we all get to live in the Sochi bubble for another couple of weeks. :)
The big athlete stories of the Games really aren't a secret to anyone, and these athletes headline all of NBC's primetime coverage; Shaun White, Gracie Gold, Lolo Jones, etc. etc. etc. But one of my favorite parts of the Olympics are the athletes in the background. Maybe they're not medal contenders, or maybe their sport isn't all that well-known, or maybe they're not American -- or heck, all of the above. But some of the best quirks and personalities remain largely hidden from the reaches of NBC, until... surprise! So here are some of my favorite Sochi discoveries!
Kate competes in luge, and therefore took a backseat to teammate (and bronze medalist) Erin Hamlin in the media department... until, that is, she started breakin' it down during warm-ups. The girl's got moves and, in case you've been living under a rock, they've totally gone viral! She told NBC in an interview that she jams to Beyonce, and Queen Bey herself posted "Go Kate!" on her Facebook page. Kate brought the party to the sliding center and "dance-blessed" Hamlin's medal and is basically the coolest.
In the anxiety-riddled world of snowboardcross, the only athlete I'd ever really been aware of was Lindsey Jacobellis. But Eva, who hails from the Czech Republic, won gold in Sochi. But the thing that jumps out immediately is... yes, that's a mustache. Every time she makes it to a final, she draws a mustache on her face for good luck. And I mean, now she's an Olympic gold medalist, so it doesn't appear to be hurting her performance!
Misha is a figure skater, and probably one that primetime totally skipped out on; after all, he's from Uzbekistan and was nowhere near the podium. However, dude put on a show. Misha came out and rocked the hell out of his long program on a night nobody else could stay on their feet. Not only did he skate well, he danced like a rockstar and skated to a song with lyrics. That's not allowed and meant an automatic point deduction, but did he care? NOPE! He was having the time of his frickin' life! How's that for a modern-day Surya Bonaly? #rebel
Oh, Gus here might just be my favorite. I don't think anyone in the general public knew his name three weeks ago. But then he was smack in the middle of the historic U.S. podium sweep in men's slopestyle skiing, and then he was adopting a whole litter of stray puppies, and suddenly the world has EXPLODED with Gus-love. I mean, seriously, it's a cute boy with a cute puppy and Olympic hardware. What more could you want?!
My apologies for making mustaches a pattern here, but dude. Dude. Look at that 'stache! I didn't think it was possible for a freestyle skier to look like he stepped out of an old photo from the '20s, but Filip nails it. And the helmet?!?! He may not've medaled in Sochi, but he officially wins everything. Between Filip and the blue and neon green uniforms, I'm starting to develop a soft spot for Slovenia!
Yet another freestyle skier. Sorry, but apparently those guys are awesome. Henrik is quite the character, as evidenced by his dreads and, uh, pants on the ground. He's not really the mental picture I have of a Swede. But why do I love him? His good luck charm is an uncooked egg, carried with him during his runs, as inspired by Cool Runnings. Feel the rhythm, feel the rhyme, get on up, it's slopestyle time!
Sigh. I'm going to miss these folks being in my life. But I can't wait to see what characters the Paras treat us to! :)
Who were your quirky favorites from Sochi?