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The Portlandian, the Internet's premier source of Tonya News
November 12, 2011 Edition - SPECIAL BIRTHDAY EDITION
(C) 2011 Portland Ice Skating Society
We are pleased to bring you the annual Birthday edition of the
Portlandian. It marks both Tonya's 41st birthday and also the
15th anniversary of the publication of The Portlandian, which
continues to remain the Internet's leading source of Tonya news.
As our regulars will know, our home city of Christchurch, New
Zealand, was hit by a massive earthquake in February of this
year, an event that resulted in over 180 deaths and major damage
to the city's infrastructure. It has also caused some disruption
to the activities of the PDXISS and has hindered our ability to
bring you Tonya news in a timely manner over the past few months,
something that we apologize for.
TONYA GIVES BIRTH TO A BOUNCING BABY BOY
In particular, it also overshadowed some good news for Tonya and
Tonyaphiles: on the 19th of February, two days before the quake,
Tonya gave birth to a baby boy at a Washington state hospital.
She was trying to keep it quiet but unfortunately one of her
friends, Don Horn (who you might remember was involved in the
production of the Tonya rock opera when it debuted in Portland in
2008), let the cat out of the bag and gave an interview to Katy
Muldoon of the Oregonian a couple of days later:
Horn is quoted as saying that Tonya required a Caesarean section
and remained hospitalized Monday. "She's always wanted a baby,"
he said. "She was told she could never have a child ... and guess
what? It really is a miracle and she really is very happy."
Linda Lewis has told us that both Tonya and husband Joe are
thrilled and very happy. We join with other Tonyaphiles in
sending them all our best wishes.
Linda has since given us an update. She says that Tonya and Joe
say Hi and send their best. She also tells us that Tonya and her
husband Joe and their son are doing great, and that the latter
"has some teeth now and he loves his little walker. He scoots all
over the place in it, and recently got his very first hair cut.
He is so cute, and Tonya really loves being a Mom and wife. She
is very happy!"
"In the early part of September, she and Joe did a sit down
interview for a television show from Japan. It was only shown
there. The crew came to where she is living in WA State, and she
said it went really well."
Tonya and Joe are determined to ensure that their son is not
subjected to the type of intense media pressure and exploitation
that she has had to put up with over the years, so for this
reason they did not allow any photos and we have sworn to keep
his name and other details private unless they decide to release
them. There are too many children being exploited and so many
missing, that and she and Joe want to keep him safe.
Linda also tells us that Tonya is still doing commentating on
"The Worlds Dumbest" show for TruTV, and loves doing it. She just
returned from doing another shoot for them a few days ago.
Tonya sends her best to all her fans and wishes them a safe and
happy Holiday season.
MOVE OVER, DANICA
Many people may be unaware that in addition to her many skating
achievements, Tonya also holds a land speed record. She first set
a record in 2008 and then upped it again in 2009. It's for the
Blown (i.e. supercharged) Vintage Gas Coupe class, and she set it
at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah in August 2009 for 97.177mph
(156.391 km/h). If you run into any Tonyaphobic skeptics, you can
point them to this page, where it's all official in black &
Tonya was at Bonneville's Speed Week again this August where she
attempted to follow up on this record, again competing with the
1931 Vintage Gas Coupe Lickety-Split owned by her friend Pete
Richardson of Yacolt WA. Alas, it was not to be: on her second
run the car developed problems and she had to pull out. In any
case, here's a couple of articles, including a new photo:
Although Tonya did not succeed this time, as always she gave it
all she's got. And unlike the hosts of a certain BBC motoring
show, there's no doubt that she does her own stunt driving!
ROCK OPERA BACK IN CAMBRIDGE
The Tonya/Nancy rock opera, which debuted in Boston back in
January, had another four night run at the Oberon in Cambridge MA
"It's pretty intense. There's a scene where the entire
incredibly big-voiced ensemble is singing 'Fall, Nancy, fall!'
while I'm doing incredibly difficult balancing poses on top of
this big box," says actress Kristen Lee Sergeant, who plays
When the chamber opera premiered at Zero Arrow, Sergeant was
pursuing an opera career and sang the role of Tonya. Now the
Manchester-by-the-Sea native is singing with jazz bands in New
York and appearing in musicals, and she has switched roles.
"They're similar in that both have demons, but Nancy's are
more in her head," Sergeant says. "She has to fight the inner
voices telling her she can't do it, that she's a screw-up,
blah blah blah. Tonya, on the other hand, has to deal with
actual people telling her that."
Negotiations are underway to bring the production to Los Angeles,
so check out these web sites for information about any upcoming
performances in the future:
The latter has several photos from the July performance.
TONYA IS MUSE FOR FASHION DESIGNER
A Danish-born British-based fashion designer has confessed that
Tonya is one of his inspirations:
Jensen admits that his muses are quite controversial, but says
they have nothing in common apart from the fact that they attract
him. "I suppose they're damaged goods but they're also strong,
"It's a bit of everything. Within the time they inspire me, I'm
obsessed. I'm a bit like a stalker. They're not muses in a
traditional sense. It's good having a story behind a collection.
It gives a collection soul."
You can see examples of Jensen's Tonya-inspired outfits at his
TONYA'S MAILING ADDRESS
Some people may have experienced problems with mail being
returned recently from the P.O. Box in Texas that has been the
snail mail address for Tonya these past few years. It appears
that due to ill health, Tonya's agent, Linda Lewis, has been
unable to check it regularly and it was closed and mail addressed
to it has been being returned to sender.
Linda has asked us to send this message to all Tonyaphiles about
To any and all fans of Tonya Harding, who have either sent fan
mail or autograph photo requests to PO Box 376 Manor, Texas,
and had your mail returned, I apologize. That PO Box address
is no longer valid. I will let Terry know as soon as I have
secured that new PO Box so he can let you, the fans, know.
Again, I apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused
Acting Agent for Tonya Harding
BRITISH BUSINESSMAN PROPOSES TONYA/NANCY BOXING MATCH
In mid-October a Nigerian-born British dot-com millionaire &
part-time actor was reported as offering a large sum of money for
Tonya & that other skater to duke out their differences in a
Digital media entrepreneur, FilmOn's Alki David, announced he
wanted the two women to face off November 5 in return for the sum
of - cue the Dr. Evil-sounding voice - ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND
DOLLARS. "David is giving Kerrigan the chance to return to
stardom in a fun three one-minute round match as part of his
great celebrity fight night card", his announcement said.
But there were to be no fireworks in the ring on this Guy Fawkes
Day - nothing happened. Which should come as no surprise, as
apparently this guy is well-known for coming up with gimmick
publicity stunts like this (such as a previous offer involving
streaking in front of President Obama). Heck, why didn't he make
the offer a nice round billion and get even bigger headlines? We
all know there was no chance of this happening, so he'll never
have had to pony up the cash anyway.
In doing so he's just joining the long list of bums who seek to
use Tonya as a cheap way of getting publicity for themselves -
guys like Jim Maxey, the late David Hans S(c)h(m)i(d)t and a
classic example, Damon Feldman, a self styled boxing "promoter"
with a long history of running illegal, unlicensed boxing events.
He's now been sentenced to two years probation & banned from
promoting fights in Pennsylvania for the same period. He's also
got to shell out a whole pile of money:
However this hasn't stopped him from continuing to promote these
events in other states.
He also has to pay $7500 in restitution for money he allegedly
stole from an investor in one of his clebrity boxing matches. And
if he doesn't he could face felony charges. Which would just make
our day, as he still owes Tonya a bucketload of dough.
WHY TONYA MIGHT WANT TO MOVE OUT OF PORTLAND
When it comes to earthquakes, it seems it may be as badly exposed
AT THE VIDEO STORE: THE GAMES (1970)
Directed by Michael Winner (best known for the "Death Wish"
franchise), this film follows the fortunes of four amateur
athletes - a British milkman, an American college jock, an
Australian Aborigine and a Czech army officer - as they prepare
for the marathon at a fictional 1970 Olympics held in Rome. The
Brit is played by Michael Crawford, most familiar for his
performance in "Phantom of the Opera" and the Britcom "Some
Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em". The American is portrayed by Ryan O'Neal,
the Czech by Charles Aznavour and the Aborigine by Athol Compton.
Erich Segal, himself a former Olympic marathon runner, adapted
the screenplay from a novel by Hugh Atkinson.
As the film progresses, we see each athlete encountering various
temptations and problems along the way: Crawford's character, for
instance, is driven to the point of almost complete physical and
nervous breakdown by a fanatical coach bent on vicariously
achieving his own unfulfilled sporting ambitions via his protege,
a scenario that's probably also all too familiar to skating fans.
The American toys with performance enhancing drugs, a decision
that almost kills him when he suffers an adverse reaction. The
Czech officer finds himself being used as a propaganda tool by
his Communist masters. The Aborigine runs into racism and
politics - he's given his own room because nobody else on the
Aussie team wants to share with a "black fella", and is later
approached by black atheletes from other countries who want him
to participate in a political boycott.
In addition to these personal stories, the film also dabbles in
larger issues surrounding the Games themselves, such as the
influence of big business: the IOC decides to shift the marathon
to the middle of the day, despite that fact it will be
dangerously hot for the athletes, simply in order to please the
whims of the U.S. television networks for whom this time slot is
Viewed from a perspective of over 40 years on, "The Games"
presents a very quaint, old-fashioned and dated image of how the
Olympics used to be back in the days when amateur sport really
was amateur. Yet it shows that even in 1970, many of the issues
that plague the Olympics today - abusive coaches, drugs,
politics, racism and commercialism - were starting to rear their
ugly heads. For these reasons, it's worth looking at if you can
find a copy. It doesn't appear to be available on DVD, but it can
be downloaded from iTunes or Amazon.
"TONYA" MAKES APPEARANCE IN FAIRBANKS FUN-RUN
And now, a weird story from Alaska (and no, it doesn't involve
anyone whose surname starts with the letter "P" either, which
makes it weirder still).
The Midnight Sun Run is held in Fairbanks every year to mark the
Summer solstice. Tradition dictates that people dress up in odd-
ball costumes while participating. This year's race featured a
typical array of outfits - Pac-men, superheroes, hippies, knights
in armor, and the inevitable Star Wars storm troopers. And also a
couple of contestants dressed as Tonya and that other New England
skater (the latter with a bandaged knee and a wheelchair). You
can see them by clicking on the slideshow buttons in these
"Dressed as Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding, Anne Chemi,
seated, and Jane Hannah participate in the costume contest of
the 28th Annual Fairbanks Daily News-Miner Midnight Sun Run
on Saturday evening, June 18, 2011, on the University of
Alaska Fairbanks campus. John Wagner/News-Miner"
Does this prove beyond any doubt that Tonya is now a permanent
pop culture icon? Well, as they say up there, "You betcha"!
And while we're up in that great state, we see that Tonya has
been dethroned from another title, though we seriously suspect
that this is one that she won't mind losing:
VISIT THESE GREAT TONYA WEB SITES:
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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