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ABC Funfit with Mary Lou Retton
June 2, 2012 6:44 PM   Subscribe

Mary Lou Retton - "It's Your Move"*

"ABC Funfit"
posted by Trurl (43 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
Mary Lou Retton on her last event of the All Around competition at the 1984 Olympic Games. She needed a 10.00 to win the gold medal, and she did it twice. She scored a perfect 10 on both her vaults.

Her earlier perfect 10 score in the floor exercise.
posted by Trurl at 6:44 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Mary Lou also loves bowling.
posted by GamblingBlues at 6:55 PM on June 2, 2012 [4 favorites]


In 2006, the powers that be totally changed how gymnastics is scored. Now they don't give out perfect tens anymore.

Stupid, stupid, stupid.
posted by Sys Rq at 7:03 PM on June 2, 2012


Didn't that "perfect 10" crap start with Nadia Comeneci?
posted by Max Power at 7:17 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Bumming--i thought this was a link to MLR's long-lost guest-starring spot on "It's Your Move"
posted by Zerowensboring at 7:32 PM on June 2, 2012 [4 favorites]


My sister, taking her twin three-year-old girls to have their hair cut, wanted the hair dreser to give them a short but stylish and perky cut. She said, "Oh, just give them a Mary Lou Retton style."

The hair dresser had no idea what the hell she was talking about. Being old sucks.
posted by Slap*Happy at 7:32 PM on June 2, 2012 [15 favorites]


Nadia Comăneci was the first female gymnast to receive a perfect 10, yeah. They completely changed how gymnastics is scored, now, as Sys Rq mentioned. Following the 2004 Olympics, FIG initiated a change, but it's very controversial and a lot of top gymnasts and coaches have spoken out against it.

Anyway, Mary Lou Retton is magical. And I kind of love that she has a workout video.
posted by asciident at 7:38 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Mary Lou Retton on her last event of the All Around competition at the 1984 Olympic Games. She needed a 10.00 to win the gold medal, and she did it twice. She scored a perfect 10 on both her vaults.

Her earlier perfect 10 score in the floor exercise.


Yes, she did that, and then she went and did all those stupid assed commercials and that's why when I hear her name I can't help but think, "Double double cheese cheese burger burger please."
posted by The 10th Regiment of Foot at 7:48 PM on June 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


Hunter S. Thompson - "The Temptations of Jean-Claude Killy"
posted by Trurl at 7:53 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Self-link: Gymnastics is better off without the perfect 10.
posted by escabeche at 7:56 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


It's curious to learn of the triangle between Retton, Ronald Reagan and Wheaties cereal.

Retton was (is) a Baptist social conservative and supporter of Reagan. Reagan had ties with the cereal going back to 1937 when he was selected as the most popular Wheaties announcer in the nation, for which he was awarded a trip to CA, while there he took a Warner Bros. screen test and this led to his eventual film career. In 1984, Retton became the first woman athlete depicted on the front of a Wheaties box, and became the cereal's first official spokeswoman.
posted by stbalbach at 8:06 PM on June 2, 2012 [6 favorites]


I closed my eyes while listening to this and saw infinite vistas of Mary Lou doing endless cartwheels and flips.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:19 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Mash it up with the Teen Steam theme for maximum lulz!
posted by mintcake! at 8:32 PM on June 2, 2012 [3 favorites]


As I type this, Rush Hour 3 is on TV with the sound off, and Mary Lou Retton's It's Your Move is playing through my laptop speakers. The two sync up perfectly.
posted by i_have_a_computer at 9:17 PM on June 2, 2012 [2 favorites]


i'd heard of her of course, but i'd never seen footage of her in the 1984 olympics before. holy shit - her confidence and vitality are off the charts. amazing.
posted by facetious at 9:36 PM on June 2, 2012 [2 favorites]


about. Being old sucks.

Old? Please, I'm 27. Being culturally ignorant sucks, I kniw exactly what a Mary Lou Retton cut means. Have these people not seen Scrooged? Gah, just say you want a pixie cut, that the barbarians should know.
posted by The Whelk at 9:38 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


Old? Please, I'm 27. Being culturally ignorant sucks, I kniw exactly what a Mary Lou Retton cut means. Have these people not seen Scrooged? Gah, just say you want a pixie cut, that the barbarians should know.

Dude? I don't know how to tell you this but I'm pretty sure you may be fabulously gay while living in the fashion capitol of the entire Universe and you may be imbued with a number of super powers whose very names will never, ever be known down at Fantastic Sam's or Supercuts or wherever it is that those wriggly hu-mon larvae get their keratin extrusions trimmed these days.

Granted, I also know exactly what a Mary Lou Retton pixie-cut looks like. In my defense I had a major crush on her at during a hormonally crucial moment in my life in a way that hasn't ever happened again - but in retrospect I realize I was just living in the 80s and I was probably high on Aquanet, acid wash jeans, Reaganism and the fact that the Olympics was happening in my home town at the time.

Wanted: Time machine. So I can repeatedly slap my younger self in the face, causality be damned.
posted by loquacious at 10:06 PM on June 2, 2012 [4 favorites]


Let's not forget the best thing ever: "...and Mary Lou Retton, as Tiny Tim!"

Children love an acrobat!
posted by dhartung at 10:57 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]



stbalbach: "It's curious to learn of the triangle between Retton, Ronald Reagan and Wheaties cereal."

I was never able to separate her from the corporate product and see her as a person. Even the rush and hug from coach Béla to juice up the crowd and coax 10's out of the judges seemed like a competitive birthright of USA at the anti-communist LA Olympics. No way a Russian coach would be allowed to do that, if they had not boycotted.

Her face showed a fleshiness and I always wondered if she had drug or nutrition issues.

The artifice of her as a product would crumble, I expected. Kudos to her for never imploding.
posted by surplus at 11:36 PM on June 2, 2012


I had a major crush on her...

I was head over heels for Mary Lou, but she told me to come back when I could do it twice, with a twist.
posted by twoleftfeet at 11:39 PM on June 2, 2012 [1 favorite]


The hair dresser had no idea what the hell she was talking about. Being old sucks.
posted by Slap*Happy at 3:32 AM on June 3


I'm old and I would have no idea who she was talking about. I'd never heard of this person before. It probably helps that I'm not American, I suppose.
posted by Decani at 1:47 AM on June 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


That was fantastic, but I need to leave before I waste my afternoon watching gymnastics videos on YouTube.
posted by Karmeliet at 1:57 AM on June 3, 2012


Old? You think you're old? That haircut is a Dorothy Hamel.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 2:17 AM on June 3, 2012 [18 favorites]


I'm old and I would have no idea who she was talking about. I'd never heard of this person before. It probably helps that I'm not American, I suppose.
Yeah, just between you and me they get a bit w e i r d when it comes to american female gymnasts.
Think reaction to 911 but with more venom and jingoism.

posted by fullerine at 5:11 AM on June 3, 2012


I was never able to separate her from the corporate product and see her as a person

I was 17 and was not yet in the habit of regarding media phenomena with instant cynicism but even then it seemed to me that her famous smile, having to be so displayed on command so frequently, had to be mostly grimace.
posted by Trurl at 6:04 AM on June 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


a Mary Lou Retton pixie-cut

Nope. Nope. There is no such thing.
posted by Stewriffic at 8:09 AM on June 3, 2012


Old? You think you're old? That haircut is a Dorothy Hamel.

No, *I'm* old -- it's Dorothy Hamill.
posted by JanetLand at 9:43 AM on June 3, 2012 [3 favorites]


If it's on a dude, It's a Bruce Jenner.
posted by jonmc at 10:01 AM on June 3, 2012 [2 favorites]


Mary Lou Retton did NOT have the same haircut as Dorothy Hamill.

Maybe you were thinking of Mark Hamill?
posted by Sys Rq at 10:02 AM on June 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm so old I call that cut a Johnny Ramone...
posted by Ron Thanagar at 11:15 AM on June 3, 2012 [2 favorites]


The force was with him.
posted by jonmc at 11:16 AM on June 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


If we all were really old we'd call it a Prince Valiant.
posted by jonmc at 11:49 AM on June 3, 2012 [3 favorites]


A Joan Of Arc.
posted by The Whelk at 12:13 PM on June 3, 2012 [2 favorites]


She was a smokin' babe.
posted by jonmc at 2:00 PM on June 3, 2012


Kudos to her for never imploding.

Amazing, isn't it? She even publishes books with titles like "Mary Lou Retton's Gateways To Happiness: 7 Ways to a More Peaceful, More Prosperous, More Satisfying Life". Man there's got to be dirt, it's not natural. There's not even a Kitty Kelley bio.
posted by stbalbach at 2:21 PM on June 3, 2012


Bumming--i thought this was a link to MLR's long-lost guest-starring spot on "It's Your Move"

Well, Mary Lou was going to do a two-episode stint as a groupie of the Dregs of Humanity, but she was later limited to a walk-on part where she said, "Bones is the father of my baby!"
posted by jonp72 at 4:05 PM on June 3, 2012


Mary Lou Retton's Hip Replacement: "The next time, I won't wait so long. Biomet changed my life!":
Approximately six years ago, Mary Lou Retton began experiencing pain in her left hip. As a world-renowned gymnast, Mary Lou had no idea she had been born with hip dysplasia, an anatomic abnormality. Her performances during the 1984 Olympic Games had earned Mary Lou five medals, the greatest number of medals won by any athlete that year and placed her as the first American woman to win the All Around Gold Medal in women's gymnastics. Dealing with hip pain in recent years had become Mary Lou's newest challenge, severely limiting her active lifestyle.

When the pain began, Mary Lou visited her general practitioner, who prescribed medication. Then, approximately two years ago, Mary Lou decided to seek the advice of a specialist, Houston orthopedic surgeon Brian S. Parsley, M.D. After reviewing results from her diagnostic workup, Dr. Parsley stated, "Mary Lou, there's no way around it. You need a hip replacement." Mary Lou replied that she just wasn't ready yet. Dr. Parsley responded, "You'll be back."
Read more about Mary Lou's hip replacement at Mary Lou's Hip Replacement Website.

- - - - -

Born the daughter of baby boomers, Mary Lou was 16 during the 1984 Olympics (here she is with President Reagan afterwards). Remember, boys and girls of all post-WWII generations, that you can always play hard now and pay later. From Trends and Regional Variation in Hip, Knee and Shoulder Replacement, Dartmouth Atlas Surgery Report, April 15, 2010:
This new analysis of Medicare data found a 15 percent increase in the overall rate of hip replacement, a 48 percent increase in the overall rate of knee replacement and a 67 percent increase in the overall rate of shoulder replacement from 2000-2001 to 2005-2006. Meanwhile, the rate of shoulder replacement was 10 times higher in some regions than others during 2005-2006, and the rates of hip and knee replacements were four times higher.]
If you sacrifice enough to become a champion, you may even get replacement body part endorsements.
posted by cenoxo at 6:00 PM on June 3, 2012


Regarding haircuts — Dorothy Hamill (1976) vs. Mary Lou Retton (1984).

Thank God Darpa for the Intertubes, eh?
posted by cenoxo at 6:11 PM on June 3, 2012


This triggers lots of nostalgia for me, and being as people reading this far into comments might be interested in more Retton, here's how she became a mythical person on my childhood. I grew up in Spring, Texas, a suburb of Houston that was also home to Bela Karolyi's gym. This meant that in 1984, we were cheering on Mary Lou for being a resident of our subdivision, not just our country. In fact, Mary Lou lived at the end of the cul-de-sac on Baltic, the street right behind us. When NBC did its human interest backstory on her, you could see the familiar roofs right behind her as she rode her bike down the street. It was exciting times for seven year old me. It didn't beat the excitement of the summer before when Hurricane Alicia went through, snapping our area's abundant supply of pine trees and destroying houses all over. The house in which Mary Lou had been staying had a tree smash through its upstairs bathroom, apparently after someone had just left it. I don't know if Mary Lou Retton was that person or even if she was in the house at the time, but it always stuck with me that she may have missed her moment in the sun had that stormy night gone another way. All of the people surveyed for this awesome promotional chart would know some other celebrity the best.

Incidentally, Kim Zmeskal enrolled in my high school after her faltering in the '92 Olympics. She was a sweet girl but it was hard to reconcile her lonely stardom with the face on the cover of Newsweek at home (under the headlne, "It Hurts". A buddy realized she was too famous and imposing for anyone to ask to prom so he offered his underclassman services against my advice. She was thrilled to have someone offer and I always regret telling him to leave her alone.
posted by daedsiluap at 8:30 PM on June 3, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm a little bugged that Mary Lou discusses hip dysplasia, but not alternatives to hip replacement. If caught before arthritis sets in, hip dysplasia can be corrected with surgery using the patient's own parts. It's not even new or experimental; my insurance covered my surgeries. I'll probably need hip replacements in 5-20 years (we just don't know), but for now, my corrected hips feel fine. I suppose Biomet doesn't pay her to suggest alternatives.
posted by swerve at 8:35 PM on June 3, 2012


trurl: Hunter S. Thompson - "The Temptations of Jean-Claude Killy"

The (rat) race goes on — Jean-Claude Killy praises Sochi’s “spectacular downhill”, February 17, 2012.
posted by cenoxo at 4:42 AM on June 4, 2012


it's not natural.

Her artifice never crumbled but her hip sure did. :)

It's not the implosion I was expecting. No Betty Ford moment.

On cenoxo's post. I bet MeFi's explored how doctors oversell hip replacement and baby boomers think they can resume marathons and Ironman training after surgery.

But on that note, I'm glad there's no TV advert of current-day Mary Lou finishing a tumbling run and then telling the cameras how happy she is with that new hip.

Man. That smile could sell a bank bailout to a teabagger.
posted by surplus at 5:54 AM on June 4, 2012


Old? Please, I'm 27. Being culturally ignorant sucks, I kniw exactly what a Mary Lou Retton cut means
Her name sounded vaugly familiar. I certainly had no idea there was a haircut associated with it.
posted by delmoi at 5:49 PM on June 4, 2012


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