(this is a snippet from my book…)
In 1976 when Nadia Comaneci floated through each gymnastic routine with grace and control and filled her suitcase full of gold medals, I knew I was in big trouble. Nadia and I were the same age. She scored perfect 10 after perfect 10, and so far I’d done nothing remarkable.
“Why can’t you do something like that?” Daddy pointed at the television from his place on the couch.”
“I don’t know, I just can’t. My body isn’t made that way.” I slunk down in the chair and stared at the leftover popcorn kernels in my bowl. I still couldn’t do a very good round off, although I practiced every afternoon.
Daddy shook his head and smirked. “Maybe if you didn’t sit around after school watching television…”
“Well I know one thing. In 1980 when the next Olympics comes, I’ll be a senior. I’ll be graduating and getting married and watching television in my own house.”
Everyone stared at my revelation.
I was shocked by my revelation.
Even Nadia seemed to pause and gape at me through the television screen.
“No you won’t. You’ll be going to college,” Daddy said.
“Oh yeah, that’s true,” I remembered. Even so, I couldn’t wait until 1980.
Grace Grits and Gardening
Nadia Comaneci – Perfect Ten