• "The Portlandian" - July 15, 2019 edition

    From Terry Hall@21:1/5 to All on Tue Jul 16 23:05:31 2019
    XPost: alt.fan.tonya-harding, alt.skate.figure

    T H H E
    T H H E

    P P O O R R T L A A NN N D D I A A NN N
    P O O R R T L A A N NN D D I A A N NN

    The Portlandian, the Internet's premier source of Tonya News

    July 15, 2019 Edition
    (C) 2019 Portland Ice Skating Society
    http://www.pdxiss.org *****************************************************************

    Hot on the heels of our "Worst Cooks" special, we have another
    edition. While we've all been watching "Worst Cooks" over the
    past few months, Tonya's been quite busy doing other things, so
    let's get stuck into it. We've got a report from the Domestic
    Violence Clinic fundraiser that she attanded back in March, a few
    Instagram posts from Tonya, a recording from Tonya's appearance
    at the South Lamar Alamo a few months back, and some more Tonya-
    themed artworks. We'll finish up with an overdue remedy for a
    too-long oversight with our Jayson awards, and give perhaps a
    taste of something to come in the near future.


    Back in February we reported that Tonya would be speaking at a
    fundraiser for the University of Oregon Domestic Violence Clinic
    in Eugene on March 14th. The Clinic is part of the University's
    School of Law and provides free legal services for students and
    low-income people who are victims of domestic violence, sexual
    assault or stalking.

    Since then, several articles about Tonya's appearance at this
    event have turned up. The first two are from the University's own
    sites and feature interviews with Merle Weiner, the clinic's


    It's the first time Tonya has given a speech on this topic -
    Weiner decided to invite her after seeing "I, Tonya" and is
    excited to hear her message of hope and the importance of asking
    for help. "This is really a story that needs to be heard more,
    this background that [Tonya Harding] has with violence," Weiner
    said. "She was a low-income survivor like so many of our clients
    — she could be one of our clients."

    The second article contains more information about the Clinic and
    part of an interview with Tonya:


    When Merle Weiner, Domestic Violence Clinic director and
    Philip H. Knight Professor in the School of Law, approached
    Harding and told her about the work being done by the clinic,
    Harding said she knew she wanted to be involved. For most of
    her life, Harding experienced domestic violence, and for the
    first time she wanted to use her platform to bring awareness
    to the issue.

    Not everybody was happy about Tonya's invitation: "U of O you can
    do better than this!"; and "Um. Excuse me. This is insulting to
    survivors" were some of the cooments received after the
    announcement, according to The Oregonian. But despite this,
    Weiner decided that Tonya was the right speaker for the event -
    because, as she puts it, "No one deserves to be a victim of
    domestic violence – ever". Weiner sees Tonya as complex and
    resilient, and as someone who is still dealing with the long-
    lasting impacts of abuse:


    This link below contains the full interview. But be warned - it
    contains some pretty intense stuff, including discussion of
    suicide and sexual abuse:


    And here's their "I, Tonya" review from a few months ago as well:


    On a more upbeat note, Tonya has posted a photo on Instagram from
    her appearance at the Clinic:


    This is Sam hey me and the girls hanging out Sam, Anika, Abbey
    and Baylee at The Domestic Violence Clinic in Eugene Oregon go

    Another Instagram user has also posted a photo of their encounter
    with Tonya at the event:


    Had a great Thursday night at The 20th Annual Gala and
    Fundraiser for the Domestic Violence Clinic in Eugene. Met
    Tonya Harding, talked with Jenny from Silvan Ridge Winery (and
    tasted their delicious Malbec) and checked out all of the
    wonderful auction items that Willamette Valley Vineyards
    generously donated.


    If "Worst Cooks" wasn't enough for us (and since when can we have
    enough Tonya?), we had more good news back in April - or so we
    thought - when two short clips were posted on YouTube of Tonya
    being interviewed by RuPaul Charles on the set of his upcoming
    chat show. These were filmed last year and were the first new
    video footage of Tonya we'd seen since "Worst Cooks" (which was
    shot in July) - and it's pleasing to see she's looking better
    than ever!



    RuPaul's show aired for a three-week pilot season on selected Fox
    stations last month, and Tonyaphiles eagerly awaited a chance to
    see the full interview - but much to our disappointment, Tonya
    was nowhere to be found! All the episodes have now been uploaded
    to RuPaul's YouTube channel, but no Tonya:


    We very much hope that the full interview will make it's way out
    into the world eventually, either because the show gets picked up
    for a full run, or that it will be uploaded at some stage.

    It wasn't the only time Tonya was MIA recently - an appearance at
    a sports memorabilia convention in Chantilly, VA. at the end of
    March was also canceled at the last minute. Fortunately, you'll
    be pleased to know that it was not because of any family crisis
    affecting Tonya, just some business issues.


    Tonya's been active on Instagram over the past few months. At
    Easter, we were treated to a great photo of Tonya decorating
    Easter eggs for her family and friends. We'd much rather have the
    Tonya Bunny instead of the Easter Bunny!


    In April, Tonya posted a commemorative message on Instagram to
    mark the tenth anniversary of the passing of her father Al.
    Although her father sometimes had to leave home to find work, he
    never completely disappeared from her life as was implied in the
    movie and remained in contact with her by phone even when he
    wasn't there in person:


    Our photos page also contains some pictures of Tonya scattering
    her father's ashes in a nearby river in May 2009.


    She also marked Father's Day with what appears to be a previously
    unseen photo of her and her dad. From the look of I'd say it was
    probably taken sometime in the early - mid 90's:


    Proving that she's a dab hand in the woodwork shop, Tonya has
    also made this wooden cabinet:


    Most recently, Tonya has posted this photo of herself all dressed
    up for Independence Day! Who needs firecrackers to celebrate the
    4th of July when you've got Tonya instead?



    More material from Tonya's appearance at the Alamo Drafthouse at
    South Lamar back in August last year continues to show up. Here's
    a recording of the full 27 minutes of Tonya's post screening
    interview (audio only):


    Highlights include:

    - Tonya describes landing the 3 Axel: "like 320 pounds of
    pressure on one foot, and everything in your body goes
    'uuuuhhh' - and then you go 'Yesss!!!!'".

    - the effects of the movie on her life: "this movie has truly
    brought my life back to where it was before". It enables people
    to meet her and see what she's truly like. "Truly an amazing
    feeling when the truth does come out". "My son will grow up
    knowing his mommy's not a cheater. That's the most important

    - Describes how the movie came about. Had five 2 to 3 hour I/V's
    with Rogers. Describes watching the film with producer Bryan
    Unkeless the first time: "I frickin' laughed my ass off! I wished
    I coulda done some things, in that movie that I couldn't, or
    didn't, or wouldn't". "If you walk out of the movie feeling like
    I did, then it's a success".

    - Dancing With The Stars: "when I got that call I frickin'
    cried". Found skating hindered her dancing, because she can't
    glide like you can on ice.

    - explains how she met her husband at a karaoke bar.

    - differences between film in real life - never shot at Jeff with
    a shotgun, mother never smoked on ice - glad that "Sharp Edges"
    has resurfaced as it backs up her claims of mother beating her.
    Dad left for work at 15, not 11, but never truly left her.
    Learned she was on Oprah the same day her dad died.

    - people have written to Tonya saying "my daughter wanted to
    commit suicide, but she saw a special on you, and realized 'if
    you can do it, so can I'".

    - favorite skating song, "Wild Thing" by Tone Loc.

    - favorite costume she made herself - white costume, v-neck,
    iridescent, fluffy sleeves and fluffy skirt.

    - favorite one of all - 1991 Skate America LP, white with gold -
    "I designed that".

    - favorite activities: "hunting, fishing, 4WD, my husband and
    son, loves landscaping, anything to do with outside,...tractors,
    trucks... beer, belt buckles."

    - how has figure skating evolved? "you can skate to anything you
    want" - Tonya reckons new Code of Points system fairer as it's
    more objective.

    - was told she couldn't have kids because of medication and
    accidents on the ice.

    - once you apologize, it should be done, shouldn't have to do it
    over and over.

    - How has life changed since the movie? Happy, DWTS, (hints about
    Worst Cooks, unaware that it had already been announced). "I get
    to meet all these new people all the time, hold my head up high,
    and walk around, and go yeah, I am her, I am Tonya!"

    Tonya then finishes off by autographing a guy's girlfriend's


    Tonya has always been a muse for artists, and the trend has
    accelerated in recent months since the release of "I, Tonya".
    Recently it's produced two interesting mash-ups:

    If you've ever wondered what would happen if you combined
    "Portlandia" with an R-rated version of The Muppets, you don't
    need to any longer. The result is "Avenue PDX", a spinoff from an
    earlier puppet show called "Avenue Q". And yes, there's some
    Tonya in there:


    As the Oregonian reviewer says:

    "It’s hard to beat a puppet version of Tonya Harding singing
    'you’re worse than Jeff Gillooly' to Jack, as he reaches the
    rock bottom of his shaming. That’s just savage."

    Meanwhile, what do you get if you cross two cult movies: "I,
    Tonya" and Paul Verhoeven's "Showgirls"? Why, "I, Nomi" of


    Although as raunchy as you'd expect, the show also features a
    feminist message according to performer April Kidwell:

    In a world where females are often portrayed as two-
    dimensional, Kidwell says that both the fictional Nomi and the
    real-life Harding share complex characteristics: “They do
    things wrong. They’re fallible.”

    Kidwell points out that Harding, Berkley and the film
    Showgirls have all been demonized in the past. But she says
    they’re all experiencing a public reappraisal, from which a
    more nuanced story can be told. “I feel grateful to be a part
    of that. And to help shift the conversation and be more
    accepting of women who have flaws. We’re all humans, and
    hopefully, we all choose to grow.”

    "I, Nomi" recently finished playing in Vegas (where the original
    film was set), at the Majestic Repertory Theatre. It's also
    coming to coming to NYC on July 25, 26, & 28th. And yes, the
    people behind the THNK1994 museum (who are big fans of both Tonya
    and Showgirls) have been informed of it and are going. For more
    details, visit:


    And if you're a Tonyaphile in the Washington DC area who *still*
    hadn't got around to seeing "I, Tonya" yet, or you just wanted to
    see it again (and who doesn't?), there was still a chance to
    catch it on the big screen. On Wednesday, July 10, it was the
    subject of an outdoor screening on the corner of First & Pierce.
    And what's even better? The price - it was completely free! So
    there really was no excuse for not going along:



    Earlier this year saw a Tonya-inspired multimedia dance
    presentation by Kota Ezawa on display at the Herron Galleries at
    Perdue University in Indianapolis:


    Simply entitled "Tonya", it consists of three giant video screens
    showing a digital animation of choreographer James Kirby Rogers
    recreating Tonya's Lillehammer Long Program, shot from three
    different angles. The soundtrack incorporates not only the
    "Jurassic Park" music but also the audio commentary from the
    original routine as well:

    "Taken down from its pedastal, dance in Tonya is the
    expression of a blurred identity, a shifting mirror that
    obscures who the portrayed subject is, or could be," explains
    the German-born Ezawa in the wall text. "Removed from their
    original contexts, the images and the sound are more memorable
    in their isolation and simplicity. Rogers becomes a symbolic

    The reviewer wasn't completely convinced that the whole thing
    really said anything, but it did evoke some sympathy from him for

    "I also thought of the tragedy of it all when it all goes
    awry, as in the case of the disgraced figure skater Tonya

    And as far as we're concerned, any artwork that does that
    deserves to be in the Louvre right next to the Mona Lisa.

    We've also come across more Tonya fan-art on Instagram:

    Josetrekkie - https://www.instagram.com/p/BgG9oPolT81/
    Josetrekkie-draft - https://www.instagram.com/p/BgCh_bYFZJZ/

    Tonya slouching in a chair has proven popular:
    Tophun1986 - https://www.instagram.com/p/BgE7rtND-4n/
    Julia Leon - https://www.instagram.com/p/BnJ9RB4A8Rk/

    Jose Hortas - pays tribute to Margot with this minimalist design: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bft84J0gnYz/

    kaleigh.ford - "I,Tonya" skate & cigarette poster: https://www.instagram.com/p/BgC0HnpFX8U/

    Cesar Escher - another film poster. Well, at least he's got an
    artist's name:

    Itzel Hdz (americangoldfiinch) of Saltillo, Mexico, has two cool
    cartoon drawings of Tonya:
    https://www.instagram.com/p/BgAOfmen-pe/ https://www.instagram.com/p/Bf2jYH9nP6d/

    Amanda Albert - "Break a leg! Here’s another design I did for
    GRIME WAVE. Makes for a great card."

    NotesOnFilm - film - another smoking Tonya https://www.instagram.com/p/Bf4j2unhnM7/

    Felix Espejo - "Just watched @itonyamovie Pretty good. So

    Esther Sitver - two drawings of Tonya skating: https://www.instagram.com/p/Bfa_qzNFtpI/

    not_an_arttist - watercolor of the mirror scene https://www.instagram.com/p/BfZVaP6nHQH/

    thesonnysite - Lillehammer Tonya, plus three others: https://www.instagram.com/p/BfYuGFaDuDh/

    Angeline McCrory (somedaysangeline)

    RubyRubyDoobie - Valentine's Day card

    sjdoodlez - cute cartoon Tonya:

    Aleksandra - "this lady has been stealing all my recent nights" https://www.instagram.com/p/BfExs7ADjZX/

    Tonya's triple axel has proven inspirational for many:

    Joshua Hagler takes the abstract approach with "Triple Axel
    (Letter to Tonya H.)", mixed media on canvas, 2018. At 96 x 102
    in, or around 2.5m square, it's a big bugger:


    An earlier, smaller version:

    "Triple Axel (Letter to Tonya H.) v.1" ink, oil on polyester film
    mounted on wood panel, 2018 18 x 24 in. (46 x 61 cm)


    Ankita Athalye - triple axel Tonya

    Arichanart - 3 axel sketches

    Lil Icon - a Guns 'n' Roses fan has created this diptych entitled
    "Triple axel/Triple axl" (get it?) - click on the arrow to see
    the second part.

    veron nikki - no I don't know what the goat thing is. https://www.instagram.com/p/Bf34ZufDvFW/

    Carol Santana

    Dixon Place - (Toe Pick)

    Dana magicdanna_draw

    MagicDanna - Tonya, Jeff, LaVona

    Ryan Gajda - 3 faces of Tonya. "And I thought Margot was
    brilliant - she's so good at controlling her expressions. So I
    thought I'd draw her three times."

    Zaina badaxxartist - this infrared heatmap picture of crying
    Tonya is a tribute to "Tonya" by Brockhampton. "This is my
    favorite song on Iridescence". Done in the style of the album

    arpoot - This is a painting inspired by the legendary figure
    skater who’s also my role model in skating @therealtonyaharding https://www.instagram.com/p/BoeySSthtFP/

    Sadie Art - line drawing of Tonya at Albertville https://www.instagram.com/p/BoHi3v1BTrq/

    Whitney L. Anderson - "Tonya vs Nancy Democracy edition" - 18x24”
    colored pencil. This appears to be some political thing: Tonya in
    blue = Democrats, Nancy in red = Republicans? Would explain why
    the dresses are the colors they are. If so, they obviously don't
    realize Tonya's a Republican:


    Karyn Peters (younique_art1) has created a color pencil sketch
    and animated gif of Tonya.
    - https://www.instagram.com/p/BpYDuZ6AEk9/

    Karyn says she's a "Big fan of the movie because it doesn't shy
    away from the truth of abuse. I myself went through it and her
    courage motivates me to keep going and do my best. In my opinion
    everyone is entitled to mistakes in life cause no one is perfect
    and can only imagine how much pressure she was under. The
    olympics isn't play play it's about representing a country. She
    is definitely a talented - ice skater it's a shame we only got to
    see her when she was at her peak in her career. Who knows if she
    continued there might have been more hidden potential but guess
    there is a reason for everything."

    Studio Bolide, of Paris, France did this for Tonya's birthday
    last year:
    - https://www.instagram.com/p/BqEy2-5glL2/

    "L'important dans la vie, c'est de savoir redresser la barre"
    (The important thing in life is knowing how to get back on

    "Aujourd'hui nous fêtons l'anniversaire de Tonya Harding. 48
    années remplies de triple axels, barres de fer, lacets cassés,
    gants de boxe et de danses avec des stars... Une vie déjà bien
    remplie en somme!" (Today we are celebrating Tonya Harding's
    birthday. 48 years filled with triple axels, iron bars, broken
    laces, boxing gloves and dances with stars ... A life already
    filled in sum!)


    Recently one of our Special Duties Section operatives in England
    alerted us to the following Instagram post:


    According to our operative, the account also previously had a
    clip of Tonya "in a posh red suit and ice skates walking around
    in what looked like an office", but this has since been removed.
    The only clue as to what might be going on here is this rather
    cryptic comment from Tonya herself, which reads:

    I would like to thank all of you who were on the set for the
    film shoot today it was truly amazing you all were wonderful
    and you all made me wonderful thank you very much

    The account owner is one Jere Warren, who works as a Social
    Advertising Manager for Conversion IA, an ad agency in Brentwood,


    So could we be seeing Tonya in some kind of advertising campaign
    soon? If so, the fact that advertisers no longer see her as toxic
    to their brand would be quite gratifying and mark another major
    milestone on Tonya's road to public rehabilitation.


    Long before the term "fake news" entered the public lexicon,
    Tonya was a victim of it, and regular readers of "The
    Portlandian" will know that every so often we mark these pathetic
    journalistic efforts with something called the "Jayson" awards.
    But these have nothing to do with with a maniac running around in
    a hockey mask hacking up slutty cheerleaders with a chainsaw.
    Rather, these are named in (dis)honor of a New York Times
    reporter by the name of Jayson Blair who was discovered to have
    fabricated many of his stories a few years ago.

    It's been a while since we've dished out any Jaysons; thanks to
    "I, Tonya" we're pleased to report that the attacks on Tonya's
    character that were a regular occurence even just a couple of
    years ago have now largely dried up, with an almost 180-degree
    change in attitude by the media. Nevertheless, there are still
    some occasional lapses - and recently we saw a big one. So this
    issue we've had to dig deep in the Special Duties Section's vault
    and drag out this monstrosity that we hoped we'd consigned to
    history's trash can.

    In case you haven't already guessed, it concerns Mariah Bell, an
    American figure skater who was accused of deliberately slicing
    rival Korean skater Eunsoo Lim with her skate blade during a
    practice at Worlds back in March. The incident was widely
    reported, from the US to the UK to Canada and New Zealand, with
    the inevitable comparison to the earlier "Incident" from back in






    It was all a big beat-up by Lim's agent to get cheap publicity -
    as Christine Brennan explains in her article below, Bell had the
    right of way, and probably didn't even realize she'd made
    contact. The idea that a skater would deliberately crash into
    another skater to take them out is about as sensible as a driver
    in the Indy 500 purposely crashing into a competitor during the
    warm-up lap - they'd cause as much damage to themselves as to
    their rival. It didn't take long for the ISU to clear Bell of any


    Any of these articles would easily take out the Jayson for their
    pointless, irrelevant and desperate attempts at trying to drag
    Tonya into this non-event. But we think that one effort stands
    head and shoulders above all others, and it's from a writer with
    a long history of anti-Tonya slurs who, strangely enough, has
    never "won" a Jayson. It's a situation that is long overdue to be
    remedied, and we'll take this opportunity to do so now.

    She just can't help herself, can she? As soon as we saw the title
    and the author, we knew there'd be a cheap shot at Tonya in
    there. As it turns out, she couldn't even make it past the first
    paragraph. Yes, even by the abysmal standards of Christine
    Brennan, the queen of Tonyaphobic "alternative facts", this is a
    new low. Plus, given that Brennan was pointing out that the
    collision was NOT deliberate, it makes her mention of Tonya even
    more irrelevant.

    So Christine, this Jayson's for you. Sorry we took so long. But
    see it as a kind of belated lifetime achievement award.


    PortIce - http://www.pdxiss.org
    David House - http://www.tonyaharding.org
    Charlie Main - http://www.charliesweb.com/tonya/tonya.html
    Puppetboy - http://www.usapaul.net/tonya/
    Valerie Smith - http://www.olywa.net/radu/valerie/LilHam.html
    Swan Lake - http://members.tripod.com/~TonyaHarding/index.html
    Blades of Gold - http://members.tripod.com/tmhfan/index.html *****************************************************************

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