My wife and daughter have been enthralled with the Olympics for the past week and a half, especially the pair’s figure skating.  Me, being an analytical sort, I am always looking deeper into people and ideas and interests for motivations.  I’m not a fan of the sport, but I do respect the skill and athleticism that is necessary to participate in it, let alone excel.  I’m not fond of the male portrayals, but to each his own.

I came to my own revelation of sorts as I got pulled into my wife and daughter’s excitement, watching as the event came down to Russian and Chinese skaters. They gasped as a Russian man held his female partner aloft with one hand as they glided across the Beijing ice.  I’ll call them Vladimir and Evgenia.  More gasps were emitted as Vladimir released her and recaptured Evgenia at his hip as she gracefully posed in a horizontal position, red lipstick smile prominent against the backdrop of her complexion and the ice.

How long had they practiced that move?  It must have been sixteen-hour days in an empty rink for weeks or months.  Being we’re discussing Russians; it was probably months.  How many times did he drop this poor woman on the ice, to be punished by tyrannical communist coaches?   It was amazing, I must admit.  Still not my sport, but I will never question the athletic ability of skaters.  Especially the men.

And that is where my revelation begins.  This required a man and a woman, working together intimately, like we’re supposed to in our lives.

I’m stating the obvious?

This would not work with two women.  Nor with two men.  Twenty years ago that would not need to be stated; today that’s not entirely obvious.  Vladimir was larger than Evgenia, his thighs almost as powerful as Barry Sanders.  Evgenia was petite and slim.  Each was built for their role, reversal is not possible: Evgenia is not going to hold Vladimir above her head, and he is not going to look good in a skirt and lipstick.  I present to you the obvious–A Man, and a Woman.

 

For my wife & daughter, their excitement was in the Vladimir and Evgenia working together, and in the female skater’s beauty, poise, and trust in her partner.  An illustration that the woman must trust the man.  Even after he may have dropped her in training.  I guarantee Evgenia knows how much work is needed to hold her up, and she’s not gibbering about ‘strong women’.  And I also guarantee that if Vladimir were gay and you sent a man out there for him to toss in the air, he would say, “No, go get Evgenia.”

I believe that is the disconnect between men and women today.  Evgenia had to train, and train hard.  Training for her started when she laced up her skates.  But for Vladimir to do his part, his training began LONG before she laced up skates.  Even if she was only one hundred pounds, when she jumped, Vladimir had to catch her, continue the momentum upward, and hold her aloft with ONE hand and arm, maintaining his balance gliding across the ice.

Lifting one hundred pounds one handed over your head is a herculean task for a man in a gym on rubber mats in sneakers.  This guy did it on skates!  The amount of physical conditioning that the male skaters endure must be relentless and brutal.  And THEN he has to train to skate just like her. 

Not one mention of what an incredible feat it was.  I had to point out that he was tossing the equivalent of a giant sack of potatoes in the air, catching it, and running with it over his head.  As Vladimir and Evgenia finished and took their bows, he was visibly exhausted.  Not one word from wife or daughter of the immense task Vladimir had to perform.

Women see the work men do as a given; we’re supposed to do what we do.  It just happens, and they are entitled to it.  Women have little appreciation of men and what men do to enable their survival and set the table for their excellence.

And that is a paradox that threatens our future—Men and Women NEED one another.  I’ve never met a man who did not value the importance of women.  From what I see of late in media and daily interactions, I do not think that view is mutual.

We must protect the relationship of Man and Woman.  And in that order.  There is a visible campaign by feminists to grab any and all young women and recruit them for the ‘strong woman’ crusade.  This is where the ‘wrote our own vows’ movement began.   

Hopefully they won’t poison Simone Biles, who accepted a marriage proposal from Jonathan Owens of the NFL’s Houston Texans.

I looked at their photos, and they look happy.  I mean really happy.  Where do you see that in our times, these times of desperate housewives and athletes with groupies and baby mommas.  I do not know the young man’s history so I’m going on a limb in saying he seems like a decent guy.  He’s not in the news for trouble or hanging out with rappers.  He dated Simone, then put a ring on it.  Simone is always smiling, doesn’t pop up in the gossip columns, and looks ecstatic.  She appreciates that a man wants to hold her high!  They are the embodiment of the themes portrayed by those figure skaters.

                                                                      I see a Man, and a Woman.

 

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