Friday, August 20, 2004

Her Life Changed Forever 

We were all inspired by the performance of Carly Patterson, who became the first American since Mary Lou Retton to win the all-around gold medal in gymnastics. Retton herself enthusiastically hailed her newly-crowned "successor":
"I feel as excited now as I did for myself," Retton said by telephone. "I scared my kids because I was screaming so much.

"I had been waiting 20 years," she said. "Do you hear me? Twenty years. The crown has been sitting and waiting for the next all-around champion. Carly Patterson, it's yours."
As the NBC commentator noted, Carly Patterson's life has been changed forever by this extraordinary event. A whole new future of possibilities has opened up for her.

Let's just take a moment to wish Carly a perhaps different life path than the one Retton has pursued. Retton, a prominent Baptist, is the author of the book Gateways to Happiness. She says:
I pray every single day, all day long about it, organization, preparation and my key, of course, my husband. He's wonderful. We have a joke in the Kelly household (that's my married name) that I win a gold medal every day in his eyes.
Indeed. Retton now spends her time appearing in a children's program aired on Christian television stations. The show, Mary Lou's Flip-Flop Shop (no, it's not John Kerry's Flip-Flop Shop--it's Mary Lou's! Ha! HAA!)

from what I can gather, is meant to destroy children's imaginations and souls.
The characters include:
--Jumpy: Mary Lou's enthusiastic sidekick and best friend Jumpy exudes bouncy, acrobatic playfulness. Though Jumpy does not verbalize her enthusiasm, her infectious energy conveys the fun in being physically active.
--LZ Bones: Moving at half-speed, LZ Bones would rather sleep in his favorite chair than pitch in at the Flip Flop Shop. While he usually gets dragged against his will into singing or dancing, LZ Bones ends up enjoying and learning from the Shop's activities.
Mary Lou's Flip-Flop Shop is promoted by Christian publisher Thomas Nelson, whose catalog includes such perennial favorites as The Crippled Lamb.

Carly, dear, I know you can do better.


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