Johnny Weir Responds to Mocking Broadcasters
By Catherine Donaldson-Evans
Johnny Weir is fired up over comments by a pair of Canadian broadcasters who suggested his costumes and “body language” set a bad example for male skaters and joked he may have to take a gender test.
Fired up? Flame on! He was just miffed because taking a gender test while wearing a unitard is more difficult than peeing in a wedding dress, or playing twister while wearing one of those giant sumo outfits. And as far as body language goes, what he was pretending to eat was only a Popsicle, but that’s an understandable mix-up from the people who confuse bacon with ham.
“I’m not somebody to cry about something or to be weak about something,” Weir, 25, told a press conference in Vancouver on Wednesday. “I felt very defiant when I saw these comments.”
He then added, “meow, meow, meow… hisssssss.”
Last week, broadcasters Claude Mailhot and Alain Goldberg of RDS, a French-language sports channel in Quebec, mused on air if Weir was unfavorably judged during one of his typically flamboyant routines because he wore a semi-see-through pink and black outfit.
I’m not certain a gender test is really necessary for someone wearing see-through pink and black crotchless spandex chaps with a cape adorned with feathers and sequins.
“This may not be politically correct, but do you think he lost points due to his costume and his body language?” Mailhot said.
If they were subtracting points for sprightly costumes, they could just take away 3 points for all the men and make 7 a perfect score.
Goldberg responded that Weir’s mannerisms might hurt other men competing in the sport. “They’ll think all the boys who skate will end up like him,” he said. “It sets a bad example.”
Considering a figure skating event is like a Cher concert on ice, I don’t think that his outfit is really going to make much of an impact one way or another. The Cutting Edge was only a movie, not real life.
The pair joked that Weir should take a gender test like female South African runner Caster Semenya was forced to undergo after stirring up speculation that she was really a man. Mailhot suggested Weir should compete against women.
Doesn’t he do that already?
“It wasn’t these two men criticizing my skating, it was them criticizing me as a person, and that was something that really, frankly, pissed me off,” Weir told reporters. “Nobody knows me. … I think masculinity is what you believe it to be.”
“But if they’d like to get to know me, I’ll be waiting in room 418.”