T   H   H  E
  T   H   H  E
  T   H   H  EEEEE

PPPP   OOOO  RRRR  TTTTT L       A   N   N DDDD  I   A   N   N TM
P   P O    O R   R   T   L      A A  NN  N D   D I  A A  NN  N
PPPP  O    O RRRR    T   L     AAAAA N N N D   D I AAAAA N N N
P     O    O R   R   T   L     A   A N  NN D   D I A   A N  NN
P      OOOO  R   R   T   LLLLL A   A N   N DDDD  I A   A N   N

The Portlandian, the Internet's premier source of Tonya News

December 30, 2001 Edition - POST CHRISTMAS ISSUE
(C) 2001 Portland Ice Skating Society

Greetings, Tonyaphiles. We hope everybody had a merry festive 
season. Today, we've got a few belated Christmas gifts to dish 
out in the form of Tonya news and photos that we'll bet are 
probably better than anything Santa had in his sack on Christmas 


First up, we've news of a new TV program that will be of interest 
to Tonya supporters. 

A couple of months ago, one of our Special Duties operatives in 
the Portland area tipped us off that ESPN had approached him for 
an interview for "a Tonya & Nancy program" (to use ESPN's own 
words). Nothing more was heard, so we assumed the idea was dead, 
but recently we have been informed that it will screen on January 
6 at 8:00pm Eastern time (on ESPN classics) and again on January 
27 at 8:00pm on ESPN's regular network. 

One of the people interviewed for what is described as a classic 
biography on Tonya's life was Lynda Prouse, the author of Tonya's 
recently completed official biography, so hopefully this will be 
more than just another lame rehash of the events of '94 like the 
1998 Fox special was.

And while on the topic of the book, we have been informed that  
there is definite and serious interest from a North American 
publisher and that hopefully a deal could be imminent.


Long-time Portlandian subscriber Tor Weibye of Norway sent us 
this recently:

   Mr. Hall!
   Short report from Norwegian Tonyaphiles in Eventyrplassen 
   Vannførelag: Last Sunday we celebrated Tonya's birthday, one 
   day in advance, with creamcake and Spanish cava. Our own poet 
   had written a new poem and our president, Mr. Ole Geir 
   Johansen, held a birthday-speech.

Tor also informs us that they are working on a new web site 
featuring some Tonya material that they hope to have on-line 


Back a few months ago we covered Tonya's visit to Jacksonville, 
Florida, during which she threw out the first ball at a local 
baseball game for the Jacksonville Suns and signed a few 
miniature baseball bats for fans. While in Jacksonville, Tonya 
also stopped by at a local radio station and featured on 
something called the "Lex & Terry" show. Well, Lex & Terry have 
their own web site, and they've got some photos of Portland's ice 
princess on line as she was doing her thing on-air. You can see 
them at:

Just don't pay any attention to the junk about 
being an official site - coz there isn't one. But there are 
plenty of good ones listed at the bottom of this issue, as 


Over the years we've accumulated quite a few photos of Tonya that 
we've mentioned in the Portlandian. Unfortunately, until now 
these images have had no page of their own, which has made 
finding them on our site rather difficult. We are pleased to 
announce that we have remedied this situation with a photos page 
that brings all these pictures together. At the moment, it's just 
links, but we hope to develop this page further over coming 
months. You can access it at:

Included are most of our skate oddities and photos of fans and 
Tonya-inspired artworks.


In the final in our series of Tonya-inspired oddities we bring 
you an end-of year assortment of odds & ends.

Sign of the times:

First up is a phony Tonya street sign that was spotted on e-Bay 
several months back being sold by someone in Cape Coral, Florida. 
Measuring 60 x 15 cm, or 24 x 6 inches, it was described by the 
seller as "professionally made from heavy gauge aluminum and 
durable vinyl lettering. Makes a great decorator item for your 
room, home, club or office and makes a super gift for friends and 
family. MATERIAL: Heavy gauge aluminum with baked on green enamel 
and vinyl lettering. Comes with holes on sides for easy mounting 
or hanging."

Then there's this one-off Tonya fridge magnet designed by 
somebody from Seattle - 6cm or 2.25" in diameter

Fan clubs:

Many of the oddities we've come across, for obvious reasons, tend 
to be bats or clubs of some kind or other. For instance, Sports 
Illustrated reported in its February 28, 1994 edition that a 
Minneapolis lawyer, David Anderson, was marketing the "Tonya 
Tapper", a product he described as a metal baton with a rubber 
grip to be used as "a non-lethal defensive device". Along the 
same lines, an outfit called Revolution Gifts of Portland filed 
this trade mark application with the US Patent & Trade Mark 
Office on February 4th, 1994 for the word BATONYA for "toy bats & 
balls" in class 28 (which covers toys & games). The application 
appears to have been abandoned before it made it onto the 
register, probably because of the time lapse involved in getting 
it through the USPTO's system meant it was old news:

   Word Mark:	BATONYA	
   Goods & Services (ABANDONED) IC 028. US 022. G & S: toy bats 
   and balls	
   Serial Number:	74486378	
   Filing Date: 	February 4, 1994	
   Published for Opposition:	October 4, 1994	
   Owner	(APPLICANT): Mendez, Michell DBA Revolution Gifts 
   INDIVIDUAL UNITED STATES 7661 SW Capitol Highway Portland 
   OREGON 97219	
   Register:	PRINCIPAL	
   Live/Dead Indicator:	DEAD	
   Abandonment Date:	June 28, 1996

And finally, these minibats that Tonya signed at Jacksonville 
look awfully like something else...


It is with great regret that we learned recently that Michael 
Rosenberg, one of the skating world's most prominent and highly 
regarded agents, has announced his retirement from the skating 

Tonya supporters will know that Rosenberg has had a long 
association with Tonya; he first acted as her agent back in the 
early '90's but resigned from the position after too many hassles 
with her loser husband of the time Jeff Gillooly. Three years ago 
he teamed up again with Tonya for a successful comeback attempt 
that resulted in Tonya's performance at the ESPN Pro 
championships in Huntington, West Virginia, in October 1999. 
Since then he has continued to be of assistance to Tonya even 
after his second break with her in March 2000 in the wake of the 
unfortunate "hubcap incident", passing on offers of work and 
general advice.

In an article on, Rosenberg is quoted as saying "at 
this point in my career, I'm going to work on projects that I've 
had to continuously postpone - a book, a movie, a Las Vegas show 
and representing stars in the entertainment field. And I'll be 
able to spend more time with my family and friends." Whatever new 
endeavors he eventually takes on, we wish him the best of luck. 
We believe that this is one person whose actions and words 
throughout the years show without question he is someone who 
really deserves the title of "Tonyaphile".


Google, which bought the DejaNews Usenet archive earlier this 
year, has now stuck a huge pile of new (or should that be old) 
material on line, some of which goes back to 1981, almost to the 
very beginning of Usenet. This represents a major improvement 
over what was available before, which only went back as far as 
March 1995. This period of the late 80's to mid 90's was 
something of a golden age for Usenet; by this time there was a 
sufficient diversity of people on line for a wide range of 
subject matter of general interest (such as ice skating) to be 
discussed in an intelligent way. Prior to this Usenet was still 
largely confined to computer geeks debating arcane subjects such 
as which version of Unix was best, while as by the late 90's the 
jerks and spammers had moved in and wrecked alot of groups, 
rendering them useless.

The Internet in the early '90's was rather different from today. 
There were few private individuals with access via ISPs; postings 
came almost entirely from universities, government departments 
and defense or computer-oriented businesses. Private "on-line 
services" like AOL and Compuserve were only just beginning to 
integrate themselves into what we now know as the Internet. You 
could still actually post with your real e-mail address without 
fear of being inundated with 200 ads for porn sites or get-poor-
quick schemes. Discussions of skating were different too: there 
was initially no dedicated group for ice skating (it was just 
dumped under, and even when one did arrive in the 
form of rec.skate it was shared with skateboarders and roller 
skaters. There are some areas, however, in which things haven't 
changed: the infamous "Chuckie" Newman was still posting his 
drivel, and skating fans were STILL criticizing Dick Button's 

In addition to being of general interest, this development is 
something that is of especial interest to serious Tonyaologists 
as it means that a period of postings from Tonya's heyday are now 
available, including stuff from the January 1994 "incident". 
Although the archive is apparently rather patchy, particularly in 
the early years, the skating groups from the period in question 
look to be complete. As a result, for the first time those of us 
who arrived on the 'Net after 1994 can now see what the Internet 
skating community really thought about the "whack that shook the 
world" as it unfolded. Although we've just begun investigations, 
already predictable patterns are emerging, with some group 
"regulars" of the time (few of whom seem to be still posting 
today) being eager to rubbish Tonya and assume her guilt while 
others wanted a more cautious view. Many were fortunately smart 
enough to recognize and criticize the media circus for what it 
was. Some recognized that Gillooly was probably controlling 

The first mention of Tonya in the archive appears to be in a post 
from 8 February 1990 to by Sandra Loosemore, 
giving the results from the 1990 Nationals. Tonya came 3rd in the 
figures competition, and 7th overall at Nationals that year:

   From: "Sandra J Loosemore" 
   Subject: US figure skating championships -- early results
   Message-ID: <>
   Date: 8 Feb 90 14:15:47 GMT
   Organization: PASS Research Group

   Here are some (partial) results from the US figure skating 
   championships, being held this week here in Salt Lake City:

   Championship Ladies compulsory figures:
   1. Jill Trenary
   2. Holly Cook
   3. Tonya Harding
   4. Jeri Campbell
   5. Kristi Yamaguchi
   6. Tonia Kwiatowski
   7. Nancy Kerrigan
   8. Jennifer Leng


In a later posting Sandra explained how Tonya was actually in 2nd 
place coming into the free skating but had been ill with the flu 
all week and finished 10th after struggling through her program.

Roland Dong appears to be the first to mention Tonya's landing of 
the triple axel at the 1991 Nationals. In a posting bemoaning the 
lack of skating discussion on Usenet he mentions it in passing:

   From: "Roland Dong" 
   Subject: Figure Skating, anyone?
   Message-ID: <>
   Date: 24 Feb 91 09:59:32 GMT


   Also, if you're interested in this stuff, why don't you post 
   any-thing?! The US Nationals just happened, and I haven't 
   heard any-thing about it in the news groups. Anybody have any 
   thoughts on the Nationals? Personally, I think Kristi 
   Yamaguchi should have done much better. I just think the 
   judges were influenced by the fact that Yamaguchi skated 
   first, and by all the hype over Harding's triple (which she 
   nailed). okay, so maybe I'm biased because Yamaguchi's a local 
   girl (Fremont, CA) . . . and because she's a TOTAL KNOCKOUT!! 

   Well, that's it . . . for now. If you're interested in this 
   type of stuff, post stuff!! Or mail me stuff at the account 
   listed below.


   Roland Dong
   "Citius, Altius, Fortius"
   -- Olympic Motto (meaning, "Faster, Higher, Stronger")


And last but definitely not least, the honor of being the first 
poster to Usenet to mention you-know-what seems to go to Deborah 
Sparck of, who on 6 January 1994 at 22:20 GMT posted 
this to rec.skate:

   Newsgroups: rec.skate
   From: "Deborah Sparck" 
   Subject: Kerrigan attacked??
   Message-ID: <>
   Sender: "USENET NEWS" 
   X-Priority: 3
   Organization: Adobe Systems Incorporated
   X-MSMail-Priority: Normal
   Date: Thu, 6 Jan 1994 22:20:24 GMT
   X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V5.50.4522.1200
   Lines: 12

   A friend just came by and told me he just heard on the radio 
   that Nancy Kerrigan had been attacked by a spectator backstage 
   - had been hit in the leg with "a blunt object". Apparently 
   she was able to walk but is now in the hopsital.

   Anyone else hear anything? Is this true?? (it's 2:20 pm PST, 

   ^ Deborah Sparck Take my advice,           ^
   * Adobe Systems, Inc. I'm not using it.                     *

We'll leave it up to skating fans to find other "firsts", such as 
the first mention of ice skating or skating of any type. If 
you're interested in checking this resource out, the URL for 
searching is:

We'll be back next year with more Tonya news, including more of 
Joe Haran's Team Tonya chronicles, and more photos. We can assure 
you that the Portlandian is completely Y2.002K compliant!


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