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Book Club Claire on Inaugural Ballers

Release Date: March 9, 2023

It’s Women’s History Month, so it’s only appropriate that our first book club selection of 2023 celebrates female athletes. Book Club Claire is back to discuss Inaugural Ballers: The True Story of the First US Women’s Olympic Basketball Team by Andrew Maraniss.

You may remember that Andrew authored another one of our book club selections, Games of Deception: The True Story of the First U.S. Olympic Basketball Team at the 1936 Olympics in Hitler’s Germany. While he was doing a school tour to talk about this book with students, girls started asking him about the story of the women’s team. Those questions became the spark for Inaugural Ballers — but how does it rate comparatively? Spoiler alert: It’s just as good, if not better.

One of the elements of the book that resonated with us was that even though Title IX happened before our time, in some ways, we still felt the effects of discrimination against women’s sports. While Title IX has done so much good, that good is often slow in coming (case in point: the disparities at the 2021 NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments). If you’ve got stories of how men’s and women’s sports have been different, we’d love to hear them.

Join us for a Q&A with Inaugural Ballers author Andrew Maraniss. Monday, March 21, 2023. 9pm-10pm US Eastern Time. Free! RSVP by emailing flamealivepod@gmail.com

Our next book will be Oksana Masters’ memoir The Hard Parts: A Memoir of Courage and Triumph.

In our history moment, Jill looks at a women’s first at Seoul 1988: Track Cycling. This story also contains an Olympic first–and only–statistic.

We’ve got news from our TKFLASTAN. Hear what’s up with:

In Paris 2024 news, the first ticket lottery is over, but the next round will begin soon. If you were in the first lottery, you’re already signed up. If you weren’t in that first round, you can sign up for it from March 15 to April 20.

We’re close to 500 days away from the Paris 2024 Games, and to celebrate, the Paris Organizing Committee is having an around the world virtual relay. At 9am local time in cities all over the world, there will be special events, like this one in Dublin, Ireland.

In Milan-Cortina 2026 news, Alison’s got an announcement, and we potentially have a winner in the mascot selection!

The International Olympic Committee has announced its esport series – learn more about the games and qualifiers here.

The International Paralympic Committee has released a new strategic plan to take the organization through 2026. We break down some of the exciting goals they have.

Thanks so much for listening, and until next time, keep the flame alive!

(note: links to book titles may be affiliate links and we may receive commissions for purchases made through them)


TRANSCRIPT

Note: This is an uncorrected machine-generated transcript. It contains errors. Please do not quote from the transcript; use the audio file as the record of note.

Book Club Claire on Inaugural Ballers (Episode 277)

[00:00:00] Jill: Hello, and welcome to another episode of Keep the Flame Alive, the podcast for fans of the Olympics and Paralympics. If you love the games, we are the show for you. Each week we share stories from athletes and people behind the scenes to help you have more fun watching the games.

I am your host, Jill Jaracz, joined as always by my lovely co-host, Alison Brown. Alison, hello, how

[00:00:48] Alison: are you? Hello. Happy International Women’s Day.

[00:00:52] Jill: Happy International Women’s Day.

[00:00:54] Alison: So I loved when we were in China, we discovered this wonderful tradition that they have there of giving out roses to your favorite women.

Mm-hmm. so virtually, we’re giving roses to all of our favorite women out there in Shft today.

[00:01:09] Jill: I love the tradition. Yes. I also came across my gift that they gave us for International Women’s Day, which was the anti pandemic Sache . So

[00:01:19] Alison: does now your whole office smell of that Sache?

[00:01:22] Jill: it does.

It’s very powerful and I don’t think the scent has lessened in the year that it has been in the box.

[00:01:29] Alison: I wish. This is definitely one of those times where I wish we had Sento vision , because we could describe how those sachets smelled, but it will never fully explain how powerful these smells are and how every time you smell it, I don’t know if you have this experience.

I am back in that hotel room in my brain.

[00:01:49] Jill: exactly.

but you know, still haven’t gotten covid, so maybe it’s working. I,

[00:01:57] Alison: I haven’t gotten covid either and we’ve been in some places that were very packed with people. I’ve been on airplanes and no covid. So something about those sachets did it for

[00:02:09] Jill: us. I think so. Ah, you know what else is doing for us this week?

Book club. Book Club. Book Club Claire is back with our first book of 2023 and to celebrate Women’s History month, we are reading Inaugural Ballers, The True Story of the first US Women’s Olympic Basketball Team by previous book club author Andrew Maraniss

so take a listen to our conversation book.

Book Club Conversation – Inaugural Ballers by Andrew Maraniss

[00:02:37] Jill: Claire, welcome back. What do you

[00:02:40] Claire: have for. , . Well, we are reading Inaugural Ballers: The True Story of the First US Women’s Olympic Basketball Team by Andrew Maraniss.

We have read books by him before and it was a lot of fun to be able to actually come back to him and read another book of his. The first book that we read was Games of Deception. If you wanted to go back and read up on that and listen to that podcast episode and. Again, this was meant more for the teenagers uh young adult book.

This is not a giant 500 page tome. It is a very manageable book to read for most ages, I would say middle schooling up. I wanted to get your thoughts on the book. What did you.

[00:03:26] Alison: As expected another Andrew Maraniss. Very well written, very well researched, put together a story with characters with an arc.

I do not know much about basketball. It’s probably one of my least favorite Olympic sports, and I completely bought this book and followed the story and understood what was going on. And. So excited to get to talk about it because I just thought this was so cleverly put together.

[00:03:57] Jill: I also loved this book. It almost didn’t feel like a young adult book because it was, Written smartly, and it didn’t talk down to anybody. one of the things I loved about it was the way that Andrew put so much context into it because I think that kids today don’t necessarily understand and, and even when, like we were growing up, we didn’t understand necessarily the things that came before us.

Andrew did such a good job at putting the women’s movement into context, putting the lack of opportunities that women had in sports into context, and then blending this story in so seamlessly. it just really was such a good book and It was one of those you just wanted to keep reading more and more.

you’d think he was taken a left turn into nowhere, but it just looped right back into the story and, and just made it so much richer. And that’s one of the things I just loved about this book. ,

[00:04:57] Claire: I could definitely see where you’re talking about where [00:05:00] it goes. It’s maybe starts the chapter in a completely different time in history.

Like it’s talking about the 1904 World’s Fair, and you’re going, why are we talking about St. Louis World’s Fair? But then you realize that, okay, the Native American people that were there for that atrocious human zoo played basketball and. he kind of brings that in as, oh, this actually probably was the first women’s basketball team to play in the Olympics.

And it was very cool to see that. And I agree I hope that a lot of young women that are middle school and high school age read this book. because it does give a very nice, concise look at the women’s movement of the sixties and seventies. It gives you kind of that taste of where these US women’s basketball players minds were at, at that time without like hitting you over the head with a bunch of knowledge, but it still kind of intrigues you and makes you want to maybe read further into something like this.

Okay. What is now, what is the feminine mystique? what are all these, you know, liberation movements and burning bras and, you know, what’s all that about? And, but, you know, not realizing the restrictions that clothing at that time had on women. And, you know, we have a lot more freedom now thanks to that.

I, I thought that he tread the line very carefully on He was gonna give us too much information about something or just the right amount. He, he was very close to be like, do I really need to hear about all of this? but he was able to reign it in enough that it’s like, okay, that was worthwhile for the rest of the story.

Was there a player that you connected with throughout this book?

[00:06:44] Jill: Oh, I loved reading about Pat Summit. Career as a player because she is just such a legend in the sport of women’s basketball. and I have to say, I also do not follow basketball as a whole very much.

But I, absolutely knew who she was and how much she did for tennessee

basketball and women’s collegiate basketball, and. the, her death so early was a tragedy because she gave, she was just a brilliant player, a brilliant coach, and I loved seeing where she came from, how she got into the sport, the tough life she had growing up, and also how there was that little bit of encouragement from her dad here and there, that made it worthwhile.

[00:07:35] Alison: I remember Nancy Lieberman doing commercials in, I wanna say the late seventies, early eighties when she was part of that first women’s professional basketball league. And so to see her then where she came from, because to me she was just this girl who did commercials and I knew she was a, a basketball player.

So that was fun to put her in context of the Olympics and of sport

[00:08:00] Claire: in general.

And she was so young compared to the rest of them. She was like, what, 16 or 17? While everybody else was in college or past college. And going back to Pat Head is what she’s referenced here, cuz she, her maiden name is used throughout the book.

I did not realize she was the head coach at Tennessee in 1974. and then she was playing on the 76 Olympic team. I laughed at that because I, I didn’t realize that until the very end of the book when I was kind of looking up a little more information. I I was like I remember when she died, but I wanted to get, Some exact dates.

And then I saw that she had coached from 1974 to 2012, and I went, wait a minute. That can’t be right. Someone’s wrong on Wikipedia. Turns out they weren’t wrong. Can you imagine your coach and you know, your coach is coaching you and you’re like, all right, now I gotta go play on the women’s team for the Olympics.

See you guys in two months. she’s incredible. I, I loved hearing about her. I also liked hearing about Anne Mey. Whose brother Dave was an n b a superstar for the Milwaukee bucks. And just hearing her try to, you know, step out of her brother’s shadow and I’m sure that as an N B A athlete, that’s gotta be something hard to do.

And Nancy Lieberman, I don’t remember her as that. I remember her as Nancy Lieberman Klein. When she was, I believe she was coaching on one of the first W N B A teams back in the late nineties. It might have been the New York Liberty, I can’t remember, but that’s where I remember her from. So a lot of these names were from that era where, they were starting to get professional women’s basketball off the ground.

Take a backtrack a a little bit into the old timey, I guess you’d say, pre-Title ix women’s basketball powerhouses. were you aware of any of that pre-Title ix team dominance, or was this all new to you?

teams like the Nashville Business College [00:10:00] and the Wayland Baptist College and Immaculata College were winning, you know, national championships in the women’s leagues.

Who are these colleges? I’ve never heard of them, but Women went there to play basketball and win championships. Were you aware of any of that?

[00:10:17] Alison: I, I wasn’t, but I was particularly intrigued and excited by the Immaculata College story because I went to an all girls Catholic high school and when they started talking about the nuns and sports, It was very true to my experience.

You know, there was a nun who led our, our cheerleading squads, like 18 county titles, and they would always be the ones sitting in the front row in their habits with the little pom-poms. And so supportive. So when they had this, that these nuns were fighting for money and flying these girls around and creating this powerhouse, I said, of course it was the nuns because they believed in women’s education, women’s opportunity, women’s sports.

So that was a fun story for me to, to see them. Oh yeah, this is, this is across orders and across states.

[00:11:13] Jill: I I didn’t know of those colleges, but knowing that, the Tiger Bell story and how the tiger bells just aren’t the same as what they were in the sixties.

None of this w seemed surprising to me, but I did wanna mention that when I was in high school in the 19, late 1980s, we had a girl’s gym and a boy’s gym, and it was the old gym was the girls’ gym, and the new gym was the boys’.

[00:11:41] Claire: And I try to think of that nowadays. Thankfully, I don’t see that as much. It is a shared experience for both the boys and the girls actually in this neck of the woods. The high school that my school is associated with, people follow the girls team a lot more than the boys team because the girls team has been so dominant the past, I don’t know, eight to 10.

So it’s like, oh yeah, the boys team, whatever the girls team are, they’re going to districts. Here we go. And it that, that is exciting to see. And you know, they have two gyms now. , but it’s not a girls’ gym in the boys’ gym. It’s like, it’s the main gym and it’s the annex. And I’m sure that when both teams are in session, they share.

And I’m thankful for the trails that were blazed by people like this that helped to make that the reality. Because without that, I mean, who knows where we’d be at this point. it might have come, come to this, but it might have gone a completely different way. So, yeah, I’m thankful for that.

[00:12:44] Jill: Yeah. and I would say that it’s also Interesting how long some of these changes take to make.

And I, my, my school building is no longer there. The school moved to a new building, so I would imagine the situation is different now, but just The concepts and ideas and the way people thought, how long that takes to shift and, and change a mindset of, of how to think. And that’s one of the things that I liked about this book is that he showed, okay, this is the way we thought.

Oh, let’s talk about Phyllis Schlafly. Let’s talk about what women were expected to do and be happy being housewives. And, you know, you could. Get the kids off to school and put yourself together and have a full day playing bridge. And then that’s not really the reality, but it does take a long time for those stereotypes and that way of thinking to, to fully change in society.

[00:13:41] Alison: I thought what something was really clever that Andrew did was when he talked about resistance to Title IX and the implementation of Title ix. So many of the arguments that were made in the late sixties and the early seventies are the same that we hear now. And the way he, he phrased them and included them talking about taking money away from the boys.

And the boys are the ones who really wanna play sports. And we have to cut boys programs because we gotta give money to the girls. And it was frustrating and also brilliant in that we still hear those same arguments. Now when people talk about, oh, we had to cut men’s wrestling because we have to give money to the girls teams, and it’s like, no, you have to cut men’s wrestling cuz you got football but it’s always blamed on the women’s teams.

And he mentioned at the end, The controversy at the 2022 N C A A Men’s Basketball versus Women’s basketball Tournament, and it was the same thing that had happened to the women in this book. 50 years later, you know, they did not get the facilities. They did not get the resources. So as far as women’s sports have come, [00:15:00] and there’s a lot of people making a lot of money off of women’s sports, women in sports still do not get the same opportunities.

[00:15:08] Claire: It has gotten better, I believe, especially seeing um my parents, they live in Ann Arbor, so lately as empty nesters. They have adopted a lot of the sports teams at the University of Michigan, and they seem to gravitate towards the women’s teams, like they watched the entire gymnastics that the Big 10 hosted over the weekend.

Just to make sure that Michigan stayed on top, which I don’t think they did, but they, they followed Michigan. They, they know the gymnasts for Michigan last year. It was field hockey that they got into. So there is definitely an audience for women’s sports and if those boosters and, you know, leaders of universities just would open their eyes to see that incredible talent that they have there instead.

Putting the scapegoat on them, you know, create those opportunities. For sure. I was so crushed when there was a story from the University of Illinois where they spent like an entire year. Trying to put together this big track meet and then the men’s team decided they needed the track that day and it got canceled.

And I could not imagine putting that much time and effort into a major event for our school and to just have one person say we need the track. You can’t go anywhere else. to, to see that that was the norm. back then is crushing. Alison, did you see any of that? Oh,

[00:16:34] Alison: sure. I saw it in grammar school when we both had girls and boys sports. The boys teams always had the cheerleaders go to their games. The girls team only had the cheerleaders if there wasn’t a boys’. ,

[00:16:48] Claire: this was basketball.

[00:16:49] Jill: I don’t think our, yeah, I don’t think our girls team had cheerleaders at all.

There were cheerleaders for boys basketball and there were cheerleaders for wrestling. And that was, that was

[00:16:58] Alison: right. We had our, we had our one cheerleading squad, but the boys were the ones where the cheerleaders went to the games. So it’s, it’s a minor thing, but the boys team always got the scheduling done first, and the girls team was always secondary, even though.

Girls team is the one that was way more successful.

[00:17:18] Jill: Interesting. The other interesting point that Andrew made was that it’s not even. , just the colleges that need to do better. It’s the media that needs to do better because there’s so little media focused on women’s sports today, even with the explosion of certain publications and like, I’ll get a bunch of women’s focused newsletters in my email, but that doesn’t mean I can open up my local paper and see a ton of women’s sports.

They’ll cover a little bit of tennis. They’ll cover. A little bit of high school cuz high school sports are big in my area. They’ll cover a little bit of girls sports, but like oh my goodness, boys football in the fall. Oh, that, it’s on the local news. It’s, it’s incredible.

[00:18:06] Claire: I definitely. Understand that I also can push that there have been even improvements by the media and by schools especially with girls basketball kind of turning back into, into the bar story, but seeing the rise of attendance in college Women’s basketball games has been really fun to see over the past, even like just the past three years where they used to play in the same arena that the men do, but with far fewer people in attendance.

And nowadays I’ve been watching, they have games on E S P N on a regular basis. Give credit to E S P N. They do take a lot of time to talk about not just women’s college basketball, but the W N B. They have a whole, you know, show dedicated to it on ESPN two now, ESPN two. And I’m sure they don’t have it throughout most of the off season like they do for football, which doesn’t seem to ever have an off season.

But they are working on it. And I know especially, it’s especially a significant, I don’t know if we plan this on purpose to have this episode airing in March which, you know, is a month dedicated entirely to women. and I also appreciate that this book is being reviewed by three women. I just, you know, there’s a lot of people that will, okay, we’re looking at this and it’s all like men.

And so to, I’m appreciative and that’s kind of why I gravitated to your podcast in the first place because it was two women talking about the Olympics. And I’m very grateful to, to have gotten to know you from that. Let’s turn to the Olympics then. , 1976 is in Montreal.

You have talked about that on a couple of podcasts. Jill, you’ve been there. Correct? Did you see any talk or when you were there about the first women’s basketball tournament or was that kind [00:20:00] of something that. Was missed. Not that I

[00:20:03] Jill: remember in, in one of the years that I went, I went in 2016, which was a big, I think that was the 40th anniversary.

And they had a whole bunch of different exhibits at different locations near Olympic Park, but that focused more on Montreal as a host city and what they did. And then when I went again in 2018. I didn’t see

[00:20:26] Claire: a

[00:20:27] Jill: ton that I remembered. It was, it was a little bit of everything. About the games. What really stuck out to me though in this was the fact that they crammed so many people into the apartments. And I had been able to get an Airbnb in the Olympic Village.

It was tiny, it was a tiny apartment. And when I thought about the setup because at the different museums, they had a setup of the bunk beds and whatever, what all the furniture looked like in the room. And, and they all had ashtrays as well, sign of the times. , but thinking that the entire team got smashed into this tiny little apartment just was a little surreal.

I, I couldn’t believe that that the, or I could believe that the organizers did that, but I couldn’t believe trying to function in that way. But the amazing thing was it was better than what they had in the lead up in the staging city when they had to sleep in a building that was under construction.

It just that it. Boggles your mind and, and maybe I, I don’t know, Alison, if it means, has more meaning to us because we’re closer to that even though we didn’t live their same experiences that’s still kind of close to us, and it’s in that zeitgeist that you kind of grow up with.

[00:21:42] Alison: Sports were very different.

The Olympics were very different. You know, team u s A was not a juggernaut in 76, you know, they, they did not expect this women’s team to even make the Olympics. It wasn’t thousands of people. It wasn’t such a corporate enterprise. You know, I loved when they talked about, they talked about doing, the staging and getting their uniforms and they’re from Montgomery Ward, you know, a very ordinary main street retailer.

Today we have everything custom made by Ralph Lauren. Very different thinking, you know, whereas at that time, going to the Olympics was in some ways very representative of middle America, whereas now it. And it’s not that the, the competition has changed. It’s still super elite sports, but just the landscape of elite sports has changed so significantly.

You know, a lot of these kids when they went to the PanAm games or they went to World Championships, was the first time they had ever left the country. , Andrew tells a story of a lot of the women being so overwhelmed when they go to Mexico and Columbia and that whole, the whole world just being so different and then coming to Canada and not having enough hot water and having to share one bathroom.

And that’s great because like you said, they didn’t even have a place to. And then they had this one booster who brings them over to his house, you know, the executive from Kodak and just how down home and seated the pants all of these teams were running at 76.

[00:23:18] Jill: Right. And then you compare when, as Andrew mentioned in the book, you compare that to Rio, where the men’s and women’s basketball team had their own cruise.

and that’s where they stayed there. So they all had plenty of room, they had a lot of amenities. It’s, it’s just a totally different world for that sport today.

[00:23:37] Alison: I did love that. Once again, the disco from Montreal 76 gets a mention. , this disco must have been better than Studio 54 because anytime Montreal comes up, This disco gets talked

[00:23:52] Claire: about it very well.

Wasn’t this,

Wasn’t this the time of disco like it was at his peak and then after this it just went all downhill. You know, disco demolition night and all that. Absolutely.

[00:24:04] Alison: This is, this is the time. This saying, you know, by 19, well there was the boycott in 1980, but by the time 1980 comes around, disco is definitely on the.

[00:24:14] Jill: But what else I loved in this book was that Andrew worked really hard to get a variety of opinions of what life was like at the Olympics from different athletes in different sports, including our very own C Colani, John McLeod, who was competing in water polo then. So it was so exciting when I turned the page and there he was being interviewed and.

Just that led so much color to the story and you really got a, a really good feeling of what those gains were like for the athletes.

[00:24:48] Claire: I agree so much. I, that was some of the book that I enjoyed the most. The roundup of getting all of their gear made me think of the uh Instagram stories that team u s a always does right before the [00:25:00] Olympics with the athletes coming in and.

Showing off all their Ralph Lauren combos, cuz they, they have like 18 different ways they could wear a shirt. And then talking about the village and the opening ceremony too, and how they walked in and saw the queen in her little pink dress and, you know, waving to them and that must have been so surreal.

And there was another mention. It might have been in the f in the end notes or in the book itself that it, this was kind of the last accessible Olympics. And by accessible, I don’t mean like disability or, or wheelchair accessible. I mean, one where like the everyday person could just request tickets and get them after this, you know, by 84.

They had become such a hot commodity and nowadays, forget it, if you’re not on, on the ball about with your lottery, you ain’t getting tickets. Yeah, I I really liked all of that Olympic talk. And I did also appreciate that the U S S R was not, Placed as the bad guy in this book. I know a lot of times when you are gonna be talking about the U S A versus U S S R, that’s automatically what you put them in.

The, the, that’s the light that you will put them in. But here, Unfortunately, there were only, I believe, two Soviet athletes mentioned. But one of them s Genova, the the tall seven foot Russian woman who played and dominated against the Americans. You know, she was seen as, you know, this, this amazing athlete, but she was also seen as a vulnerable woman who, you know, was insulted for her height and for her, masculine traits.

And I did appreciate that Andrew took the time to make sure that we got a well-rounded story when it came to her. I don’t think there was enough room in the book to talk about the rest of the, But I did really appreciate that and also kind of highlighting the Canadian team as well that had struggled so much with racism in their uh and not understanding mental health when it came to Liz Sikot who ended up getting kicked off the team, I believe, before the Olympics.

Were there any other stories, either from the Olympics or even from the World Championships, the world University games that stuck out with you?

[00:27:15] Alison: I wanna mention something about Iana. She was not Russian, she was Latvian. And I think that mattered a lot to us now in that it was like the American players at the time recognized that she was an outsider on that Soviet team because if you were Latvian or Lithuanian, you were seen as less than native Russians.

And that, of course, now that’s such a huge part of our world. But I, I want a whole book on her now. Andrew, we have your next book. I hope you speak. I hope you speak Latvian and Russian and whatever else you need. But she was such an interesting character, and I completely agree that they were not painted as the enemy.

They were simply painted as the dominant team, and nobody could beat. And the kindness that the other women showed to her in just feeling a lot of sympathy and feeling a lot of connection with her, I thought was a lovely piece of the story.

[00:28:16] Claire: Of course there was that mention in the story when they were dining with them and how they were like comparing hands and stuff and, and one of the US women called her bozo, not thinking that she could understand her.

And then at the end of dinner, you know, she just responds. You know, see, see you later. And. the girl goes, wait, she could, I thought she couldn’t speak any English. And the interpreter just says, well, she can’t speak any engli. She doesn’t speak much, speak much English, but she can understand everything.

And that, that was the key to, kind of understanding her idea. And yes, I do totally agree. I would love to read a book about her.

Post Olympics. So they ended up winning the silver medal, which totally. Went over my head when I was reading the very, what first paragraph of this book and it mentions they’re going to the silver medal game. At the end I went, oh, they only got the silver. So that’s now you know where my brain was.

But it was really cool to see the aftermath of these Olympics, cuz yes, they did win the silver, but they were not treated as like pariahs. I think everybody kind of understood that the Soviets were gonna win no matter what. , were there any stories of kind of their homecomings or the, you know, the aftermath in women’s basketball that stuck out to you?

[00:29:32] Jill: Well, I have to say that, . It was interesting, and, and Andrew did touch on this a bit because of the structure of the tournament. It was, you played a game to win the silver medal and it wasn’t that you lost the gold medal match and it, it, and it was, it took a little bit of time to wrap my brain around that concept, but I thought that was really a cool way to do it because so many in, in pretty much every other tournament, it is You lose the gold, and this was such a nice way to [00:30:00] win the silver, and you felt the joy that these women worked so hard to achieve.

[00:30:04] Alison: I wanna mention that two of the players came from Southern Connecticut State University, and as a proud mom owl, I cannot let that pass

[00:30:15] Claire: I really enjoyed hearing about Luisa Harris and Trish Roberts who are African American women who grew up in the deep South. And, you know, in a time of the KK and uh segregation or.

but equal, but not really equal. Pretty not equal at all. To have them come back and get like a whole parade and, you know, special speakers, you know, laing them for their efforts. There, there’s one picture in the book. If, if you have the book, it’s near the end uh of Trish Roberts crying in an open back car as she’s going through town.

And I love that because, I mean, it doesn’t show that everything’s changed and everything’s gonna be for the better, cuz that’s just not how our world is. But it does show that there is room for progress. And this was an example of some progress being made. I, I just, I thought that was really great.

[00:31:12] Jill: I also appreciated hearing their stories and the way that Andrew framed it Not quite repetitive to a fault, but repeating the the facts of what the Deep South was at that time, he was really good at trying to frame this for younger readers to understand just how unequal this country was and is. And like you said, it, it’s a drop in the bucket, the way these women were honored and that pitcher really got to me too.

I did cry a little bit at that, that picture, and I also felt really bad knowing that yes, everybody showed up and the whole town showed up for these women. Including the white people of the town, but how much did it change how they felt and how they treated the black people in their town After that, I don’t know, but it was nice that there was some recognition and that sports can do something to help move the needle a

[00:32:11] Claire: little bit.

and there is mention a lot of times in this book where, okay, we have the Women’s Liberation movement, but it was not equal for everybody. Whether it was in third world countries when they were organizing in Mexico City. But that kind of failed because they realized that these white women in America had a different mindset about.

Women’s liberation than, every other country in the world just because they’re, they’re just trying to survive still. And also how that liberation movement was different for the African Americans in our country where they, they can’t even get to that first step, let alone get to the second and third steps that, that these white women were, were protesting for.

I, I did really appreci. that, and that just is a credit to Marina’s thoroughness that he makes sure that every base is covered when it comes to this, so that people can come at this from every angle and understand, the, the purpose of this book is not just about women’s basketball and the Olympics, it is about women’s movements and progression in the, you know, latter half of the 20th century, to be honest.

[00:33:24] Alison: My favorite part of the book was actually the last chapter where he drew the line between these women of 76 and then to Don Staley and Cheryl Miller. And he, he went all the way down to, you know, Don Staley was the coach for Tokyo, for the American women. And I thought it was so interesting. He made the reader see the ripples, that it wasn’t just this silver medal in 76, the silver medal in 76 led to the American women dominating through the two thousands and how they didn’t lose an international game for years and years, and they won so many medals and how women from 76 became the coaches that then coached the women through that.

And I think that makes it very easy for someone who doesn’t remember 76 to understand the implications and importance of what those women did and what they sacrificed and what they went through, and the joy that they still had for the sport. So many of them stayed and coached and participated and became executives or coaches in the W N B A.

So we are still feeling what 76 did in women’s sports.

[00:34:43] Claire: That night

[00:34:44] Jill: had no idea that USA Basketball still is put, puts a big emphasis on the history of the women’s program for all of the, the women who come into the program and how they all still [00:35:00] use the original. 76 team numbers on their jerseys no matter what the else they play under.

They are always honoring those women from 1976 with the numbers they wear on their backs. Oh, that got to me.

[00:35:13] Claire: That got had no idea. I think that I wrote that. I wrote

[00:35:15] Alison: that down too, cuz I thought that was such a beautiful tribute and such a nice connection. And I think we as women don’t always. Feel that history because oftentimes we’re separated from it or it’s cut off from us or it wasn’t preserved.

And to be able to draw that straight line from 76 to the Tokyo team and you know every woman who’s worn that number and you are part of that sisterhood, that is really

[00:35:42] Claire: special.

Any final thoughts Oh

[00:35:45] Alison: my God, I’m so excited to talk to Andrew now. I have

[00:35:48] Jill: questions. . I, I am as well. Oh, Claire, this has been a great pick. I, this was fabulous. You can’t go wrong with Marinus authored book, and this was no different. So thank you so much. What’s coming up next?

[00:36:05] Claire: The next one just came out. In the past couple of weeks, so I haven’t gotten a chance to look at it yet, but I’m super excited. We are going back to the Winter Paralympics and we are talking about Oksana Masters. If you watched any of the Beijing Bear Olympics last year, she was everywhere it seemed like.

Oh, in Biathlon and also in cross country skiing. she was amazing. And her book is called The Hard Parts, A Memoir of Courage and Triumph. She’s been promoting it uh a lot lately. If you follow her on her social media. So maybe you’ve read up watched a clip of her talking about it. But her history is incredible.

How she came to the United States and how she was able to use her disability to. Become such a premier athlete. So I’m very excited for the book. Hopefully you all can find it. Get it at your local bookstore or@whatbookshop.org, is that right?

[00:37:02] Jill: Yes, bookshop.org/shop/flame live pod. Any books sold through that link we get a little commission from and that greatly helps us produce the show.

So thank you for doing that. Alright, Claire, thank you so much. Great conversation as always, and we will look forward to seeing you next time. See you next

[00:37:21] Claire: time. See you in the library. .

[00:37:23] Jill: Thank you Claire. We are excited to have a Q and A with Andrew Maraniss on Monday night, March 27th. This will be at 9:00 PM Eastern, 8:00 PM Central. It’s online, so it’s virtual and you are more than welcome to attend. This is a free event, to RSVP email, flame alife pod@gmail.com and put book club in the subject line and we look forward to seeing you there.

you can follow Claire on Twitter at Cauldron Light. We will have a link to that in the show notes. And as we mentioned, our next book is Oksana Masters, the Hard Parts, and we will have a link to that in the show notes as well.

Seoul 1988: History Moment

[00:37:59] Jill: That sound means it is time for our history moment all year long. We are looking at Seoul 1988 as it is the 35th anniversary of those games. My turn for a story, and because we talked about a women’s first event today with book club, I wanted to talk about another time at the Olympics that women had the first event at their games.

you’re you’re shaking. I’m shaking my head because

[00:38:28] Alison: I know it’s 1980. and still, I mean, straight through into the two thousands where we get women. Mm-hmm. finally get to do something.

[00:38:37] Jill: Right. So Seoul 1988 was the first time that women got to compete in track cycling. Come

[00:38:44] Alison: on,

[00:38:47] Jill: Yes, that’s right. Because track cycling for men. An original OG Olympic Sport, so it only took 92 years for women to get the right to compete at the games, compare that to the basketball, which was just 40 years spread between those two. And you would think, like for some of the sports, it’s, there’s a lot of, well, the women’s sport isn’t as well developed and we need to get world championships and things like that in order.

But the sad thing with cycling, women’s sports had been developed and women really took to bikes early on when they came into being and they had track cycling world championships by 1950. So it took 30 years for it to get into the games. another cycling note. Women got the right to compete in road cycling for the first time at the Olympics in 1984, just four years prior.

So we are finally getting, yeah, I know. I would think road

[00:39:44] Alison: would’ve been the fight rather than track in terms of, you know, preserving our delicate figures.

[00:39:50] Jill: So at Seoul Men competed in five track cycling events, women one, and that was the sprint. [00:40:00] The competition had just 12 women from 12 different National Olympic committees and the dominant competitors of that time where American Connie per PERCA Young who uh, she had been a speed skate. and she did compete at C Sarajevo 1984 in speed skating and was on the 1980 team as well, but apparently did not compete at Lake Placid, so she took up cycling.

as well, she had medal at World Champs from 82 to 87. She was a 10 time US champ, just dominating in this sport right here. We also had Erica Salome of the Soviet Union, but the est Australian part of the Soviet Union. She took up cycling in 1981, just seven years prior.

Won a couple of gold medals at the 1983 summer University Ed, and the next year she was on the national team and also head won. Just a ton of world championship medal. In the eighties, including 10 goals. And the third main player of the day was Krista Looting Rotenberg from East Germany, also a double sport person, winter, summer speed, skater and track and cyclist.

She competed at 1984, Sara Avo for speed skating. She competed at Calgary. In 1988, just a few months ahead of time, won gold at the 1000 meters at Calgary. Yes. she became a track cyclist because her coach wanted her to take it up in the off season from speed skating. We find that there’s a lot of overlap there because the muscles needed are very similar. adding the cycling helped her win the gold at Sara Avo. And she won in the 500 meter. She wanted to compete in both sports after that. And the East German government said, Uhuh, you’re not doing this.

But eventually they relented and she started competing in, in both winter and summer sports. We get to the tracks like the event, and you’ve got all these hard, heavy hitters going head to head. Erica Salame beats Connie Paris Gaven Young in two straight races. In the semi-finals. So Salame is going on to the finals The other semi-final looting rotenberg needed three races cuz it was a, best two outta three event. So she needed all three races to beat Francis Isabel Goran. She won and that guaranteed that she was going to be the. Person ever to win medals in both a summer and winter games in the same year.

[00:42:30] Alison: And probably one of the last,

[00:42:32] Jill: the only, yeah, she remains the only Yes, because then the, the after 1992 they split. So you can’t do that anymore. So you got the finals against Salame and Looting Rottenberg. Looting. Rottenberg wins the first race. Salway goes on to win the next two to win the gold medal.

So big deal. Soviet wins the first gold medal. It was the first gold medal for her. She became a hero in Estonia. She and basketball player, Tet Soko were honored at Town Hall Square in Tallen, Estonia on October 4th, two days after the games were over and thousands of people came out for this and also demonstrated.

That they wanted Estonia to become an independent National Olympic committee for Barcelona.

[00:43:19] Alison: Little did they

[00:43:20] Jill: know Little did they know that they would get that dream because that was very early days of the Iron Curtain breaking apart. And uh, Estonia did become independent in 1990. Became its own national Olympic Committee for Barcelona.

Salome successfully defended her gold medal at Barcelona and on the medal stand they raised the Estonian flag upside down.

[00:43:45] Alison: Well, to be fair, it’s one of those three stripe flags and it was brand new, and I bet most people would get it wrong.

[00:43:53] Jill: she went on to compete in Atlanta.

She placed six there. She was just beloved in Estonia. She was voted the athlete of the year, nine times in the eighties and nineties. And according to Lin Estonia website, she was a politician for a while and now she lives in Spain. And according to the publication, Estonia Life. There are two movies about her in the works, a documentary and a feature film.

You know what that means? Movie club. I hope, I hope. Let’s get these developed. She did sell her gold medals at auction in 2013, and they went for $40,000 each. Krista looting Rotenberg went back to speed skating and at age 32 she competed at Albertville 1992, where she was roommates with one Claudia Pide, who

[00:44:42] Alison: doesn’t seem capable of retiring.

[00:44:45] Jill: Right, right. and Krista here was the team mom. They called their mom back in the day cuz she was the old person on the team. And that’s what Claudia Pechstein became.

[00:44:55] Alison: Claudia Psh is close to becoming the team grandma. I mean, she just

[00:44:59] Jill: does not give [00:45:00] up . Right. and Krista it albertville, she placed eighth in the thousand meter but got a bronze in the 500 meter.

So that was really cool. And then for the bronze medal at Seoul 1988, Connie Paris given young beat Isabelle Guran to get the bronze. It was the USA’s only cycling medal of these games. and the US was coming off of a, an Olympics where they. You know, you had the benefit of a boycott, so you had a, a bump in, in the medals and

[00:45:28] Alison: being the host nation, which always gets a bump.

[00:45:31] Jill: Exactly. So, uh, she went on to compete at two more Olympics after Seoul, but she did not repeat on the podium. And before Bon solo, she coached one Bonnie Blair, who is trying to transition to becoming a track cyclist as.

[00:45:44] Alison: This is becoming six degrees of track cycling. . It, it really is.

Have any of them been in a movie with Kevin Bacon

[00:45:52] Jill: I don’t know. But She is in the US Bicycling Hall of Fame and runs youth cycling programs in Southern California through the Connie Cycling Foundation. So one event spawned a lot of great. At Seoul 88,

TKFLASTAN Update

[00:46:09] Alison: welcome to shk.

[00:46:19] Jill: Now is the time where we check in with our team, keep the flame alive. These are past guests of the show, and you listeners who make up our citizenship of Stan our very own. let’s start with some results. So, Kim

[00:46:32] Alison: Roddy won the World Cup Gold Medal in Women’s Skeet shooting,

[00:46:36] Jill: Uh,

John Schuster made it to the quarter finals of the US curling Mixed doubles national championship, but did not advance any further

[00:46:43] Alison: in the tournament. And Anika Masinsky will be competing in the last World Cup race of the season in Oslo, Norway this weekend.

[00:46:51] Jill: in other news, Brianna Decker has retired from the US Women’s Hockey Team to focus on coaching.

[00:46:57] Alison: Claire Eagan is speaking about anti-doping at the Your Future Olympian Virtual Summit, which is geared toward parents and supporters of young athletes to give them insight into the world of elite sports, and we will have a link to that registration in the show.

[00:47:12] Jill: And Getwell soon wishes to Lu Jones, who is fighting her second bout with Covid 19

[00:47:18] Alison: and listener.

David has learned how to digitize his old VHS tapes and is busy reliving several past Olympics while doing so. And listener. David, I expect to see some posts in the Facebook group of some cool things you found.

[00:47:33] Jill: All of the old commercials.

Can you imagine? I, I understand there might be a YouTube channel, but We’ll, we’ll find out. Maybe there will be a link of the show notes. We

[00:47:43] Alison: have a YouTube channel.

[00:47:44] Jill: We do have a YouTube

[00:47:45] Alison: channel. Flame Alive Pod is where you can find us.

Paris 2024 Update

[00:47:48] Alison: I did not tell you this, but I’m gonna tell it to you now. Okay. . I won the lottery. I was in the lottery and it went to junk, and I missed my window. No way.

[00:48:07] Jill: Yes.

[00:48:08] Alison: Oh, and I had a window earlier than yours. I didn’t even know it was there.

[00:48:13] Jill: Oh my goodness. Oh,

[00:48:15] Alison: so the reason I mentioned this is, We are gonna talk a little about tickets, but for people who are in the lottery, I didn’t even think that it could have gone to junk because I’ve been getting things from Paris 2024 in my regular inbox, but this wasn’t one of them.

[00:48:32] Jill: That is a downer. That is very much a bummer. So, yes. If you were in the lottery, you are still in the lottery. the make your own pack lottery is over now, but we are going to move on to the second lottery. Which will be for single ticket sales, and that starts on May 11th. So I think if you weren’t in the first lottery, you can still go and sign up.

We’ll, we’ll put a link to the ticket site and the show notes, but a lot of unhappy people in that first lottery. But you always hear the unhappy people. We have so many listeners who are going, they got some tickets, they got some good tickets and things that they wanted which is fantastic. But there were a lot of, especially French people.

There was a, a poll done by XA that found that like eight and 10 people thought the ticket prices were way too high.

[00:49:18] Alison: I don’t think they had a lot of those 24 Euro tickets in this round. I think they’re hanging onto those for later.

[00:49:26] Jill: I would agree. I bet that’s the case. And maybe they think if you’re coming for three events, you’re coming for multiple days.

So you probably want to see, or you know, maybe the idea is you are planning to spend a fair amount of money for hotel and being there for a while, so you might as well, you know, spend some money on tickets. We’ll see what happens

[00:49:49] Alison: as we go

[00:49:50] Jill: along. Found out and inside the games has reported that the Notre Dame construction will not be finished until at least December, 2024, which you know [00:50:00] that the I O C really was hoping to have the beautiful backdrop ready to go for all of the aerial shots, but not to be, not surprising.

We had a pandemic that shut things down and. Slowed some things down,

[00:50:11] Alison: and when you have an ancient cathedral that you’re trying to rebuild after a devastating fire, it’s not like you can get Joe, the contractor, she just slap some plywood up,

[00:50:22] Jill: and nor do you want Joe, the contractor to slap some plywood up?

Can you imagine that? Or as

[00:50:28] Alison: they, they did in Beijing where they put wallpaper up.

[00:50:31] Jill: Oh, right, right, right, right, right. That that was in the hotels or you don’t want them to, to hire the person. That re touched up those paintings and totally ruined them. Remember that woman who did the, the art restoration neck

[00:50:45] Alison: Yeah. That was in Italy, I believe, where she went in the church and made Jesus look like a potato .

[00:50:50] Jill: So we don’t want that with Notre Dame. No. Notre

[00:50:53] Alison: Notre Dame deserves better than a potato. .

[00:50:55] Jill: the bright side of this is that they’ve put together a free exhibit about the work and the restoration that is in an underground area in front of the church.

That exhibit will be open during the games, so that’s something if you would like to see Notre Dame, that’s something that you will be able to go and still enjoy and learn some more about the process. We are close to 500 days to go. Can you believe that my stomach hurts ? Yes. Tuesday, March 14th is the official 500 days to go Mark till Paris.

And to celebrate that, the organizers are staging a 24 hour relay around the world. So this will be at 9:00 AM local time and it kind of passes off from time zone to time zone The people involved in this are like the embassies and consulates and permanent representations of France overseas, and they’re gonna have a whole bunch of event.

At 9:00 AM on their time zone. Things like in Paris there will be a race along Theen in Brisbane, in Australia, there’s gonna be an eight person boat rowing down the Brisbane River. There’s gonna be a relay race along the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. In Hong Kong, there will be a 5K throughout the city, and then that crosses the finish line on a dragon boat.

I don’t know how that will work, but that sounds very cool. In Turkey, there’s going to be a solidarity raise in honor of the recent earthquake there. And then in Ireland, there’s going to be a three K light jog at Sean Moore Park, and I love the Irish . It’s a light jog followed by

[00:52:28] Alison: a pint. That’s my kind of event, ,

[00:52:32] Jill: and you’ll be able to enter the draw to get into that marathon for all 10 k event at the Paris 2024 is holding that one is free.

We found a link on Eventbrite for that. So we will put that in the show notes. If you are in Dublin, we’re going to be near Dublin on the 14th. Maybe you wanna truck over to the park and have a light jog.

Milan-Cortina 2026 Update

[00:52:53] Alison: Also something I have not shared with the listeners, my Italian citizenship came through. So I’m, I am officially a dual citizen. So when 2026 comes in, , they have to let me into the country . Now, this can also mean they won’t let me out of the country because I’ll have done something wrong. . But yes, it

[00:53:21] Jill: is official.

It is so cool. Very excited for you. I’m so excited.

Oh, so very cool. But not. Not official from the organizing committee, but italian.it is reporting that the mascot that won the public vote is the Stokes or the I mines, whatever you would like to call them. So we are looking at probably animals being our Winter Olympic mascot. And I do, I,

[00:53:48] Alison: I have to say when I ended up to vote, I had a very hard time cuz I liked both and I think I ended.

Two different days voting for each of them, . But I do love the STEs in the way that I loved Bing, DWE, DWN and Shui. Ron Ron cuz I feel like there’s one for each of us. Like you’re the slightly taller one and I’m the slightly shorter one. The flowers I didn’t feel, we really could identify with, but these.

These are us, and I love

[00:54:18] Jill: that. The, the thing about the flowers that I kept thinking about is if you’ve ever been to a, a big figure skating event and they have merch there, they sell those stuffed flowers that you can throw on the ice instead of you throwing real flowers on the ice now. And I just kept thinking that people would be throwing these, these mascots all over the ice at figure skating if they would go.

[00:54:42] Alison: But do you know how soft those stoats stuffed animals are gonna be? Incredibly. Incredibly, because that’s ermine. I mean, you gotta make those bellies rubble,

International Olympic Committee Update

[00:54:51] Jill: Oh, we have some. Oh yes, we have some. I Ooc news. This is ki [00:55:00] this is actually kind of interesting because the i o C has announced the sports for its eSport series. The eSport series will culminate at the end of June, June 22 to 25 in Singapore. So they have released the games that they are going to be.

Competing with and it’s like the Olympics. They w they partner with the International Federations, and I believe the federations run the show on all of these. So they’ve got nine games, nine different sports archery. They’re playing Tic-Tac Bow Baseball. They’re playing W B S C E Baseball Power Pros.

Chess is chess.com. Cycling is swift. Dance sport is just dance. Motor sport is grand tomo. Sailing is virtual regatta. TaeKwonDo is virtual. TaeKwonDo and tennis is a game called Tennis Clash.

[00:55:58] Alison: We’ve played a lot of just dance in my house. Oh, you should see me on Istanbul, not Constantinople. I rock

[00:56:04] Jill: that.

Maybe you should find a qualifi.

[00:56:07] Alison: I don’t do so well with the Katy Perry tunes though. .

[00:56:12] Jill: there’s an article in a publication called Digiday that, that talked about how the eSports industry was not thrilled with these choices because They are not games that the competitive eSports league.

Play, but the eSports leagues are prone to games that involve a lot of violence and the I O C. nonviolent eSport games, so that is one disparity. The other thing they noted that it was interesting was that a lot of these games are mobile games that you can play on your phone or a tablet, and that makes them more accessible to people around the world who may not have the means to get the hardcore gaming computer stuff and equipment.

These other eSports, especially the competitive eSports players use, And it’s kind of like the I O C is using its brand to interest fans who like the Olympics to get them interested in gaming.

and it’s another way that they can use their brand and, and some leverage some sponsorship among its existing fan base.

[00:57:13] Alison: and one of the things that the I O C talked a lot about when it was talking about using the eSports was getting games that are physical. So when you play just dance, you work up a.

Hmm. It is not a joke. You can really get your workout with just dance. I don’t know these others, but just looking at what they chose, you know, virtual TaeKwonDo. Virtual regatta, those don’t sound like games. You play in your little gaming chair. It sounds like games you have to get up and move around, which was the point of them partnering with eSports.

[00:57:44] Jill: So you know, we can say we’re. Let’s throw down at some of these qualifiers. , I see your face. .

[00:57:54] Alison: I’m telling you, Istanbul not constant.

Noble. I will take you out .

[00:57:59] Jill: So the qualifiers have started. We will have a link to the. In the show notes to find out more about how you can participate. If you do participate, let us know. Let us know how it goes. If you play any of these games, let us know what you think of them and what you think of the whole eSports thing being part of the Olympics, but not part of the, the actual Olympics yet.

International Paralympic Committee Update

[00:58:18] Jill:

That’s some new music to denote that it is time to talk International Paralympic Committee news. And the I P C has released a new strategic plan to take them through to 2026, and the whole vision is to make for an inclusive world through parasport.

So the plan focuses on serving as members and athletes, of course delivering the Olympic games and Showcasing athlete excellence through delivery of the Paralympic games, driving impact through Parasport and using the influence of the I P C to advance disability inclusion around the world, and then also continue to build their professional organization.

And one thing I thought that was interesting in the plan was that they are looking at ways to develop the Paralympic winter games.

[00:59:07] Alison: Which is very interesting because the Winter Olympics right now is struggling to find a host and struggling because of climate change, to have various events around the world.

You know, biathlon has been struggling with weather issues. I know skiing Alpine has been struggling, so the Paralympics trying to expand. , they’re winter sports at a time when winter sports in general are facing a whole new set of challenges makes this very complex because you’ve got two different problems going on at the same time.

[00:59:39] Jill: Yeah. I mean, how, how long do we have winter games? But you know, and I. Some of the issues are we just have drastic weather shifts in so many different places around the world now, and understanding what the weather could be [01:00:00] several years out. Who knows? Because.

Where I live, we’ve had hardly any snow all year. And we get snow, you know, you have enough to cross-country ski. You have enough, there’s downhill skiing here. you would not call it downhill, but there is some downhill here. But we just haven’t had the weather for it this year.

It’s been so warm. It’s been wet in terms of rain, but not snowy. Meanwhile, Southern California got snow and they never get snow, and there’s just been so much snow dumped in the Lake Tahoe area. is this volatile weather something that you can reliably count on?

[01:00:37] Alison: And how does that affect sports when you also have to create a new infrastructure for people with particular disabilities?

You know, you, when you do a sit ski, you can’t do the same kind of

[01:00:49] Jill: chairlift. Mm-hmm. ,

[01:00:52] Alison: you probably need to do the gondolas. So just simple things like. Right. You’re creating a new infrastructure. Where do you put your money? And are you gonna do a lot of artificial snow or, those kind of facilities?

So it really is a complex issue. I’m thrilled that they’ve got this new plan in place it shows how much

[01:01:13] Jill: they’re thinking. Yeah. And it shows. That the organization is at a different place in its history you know, now we’re at a place where we can evolve from here and this is how we want to do it.

That’s very cool. One other thing I think about the winter games, I wonder if they will look at bringing sledge racing back, cuz that could be indoor. Remember how we, so we’ve seen it mentioned a long ago, like

1998 might have been the last time they had s sled racing, but maybe they’ll look at bringing some indoor sports back into the fold. I

[01:01:44] Alison: so wanna get in one of those sleds, ,

[01:01:46] Jill: and I was thinking, oh, maybe may I, I cannot wait to. See when women’s sled hockey is going to be an event, cuz you know that’s coming slow.

But maybe, maybe once a couple of women get on board, that’ll change. We would like to thank all of you supporting this show, whether you tell a friend, whether you participate in our Facebook group or send us messages on different platforms.

We really appre appreciate you being there with us. We wanna let our patrons know that our Patreon episode for March is coming out soon. We will be playing. Mascot madness. So get ready for bracket fun. If you are a gold level patron, you will get to join us for that taping. get excited that we’re also finding more rules changes that will change how you watch sports at Paris 2024.

That is our regular bonus content for silver and gold and above level patron at Patreon. You can find out how to become a patron at Flame Alive Pod. Dot com slash support. And that will do it for this week. Let us know what you thought of inaugural ballers.

[01:02:51] Alison: Email us at flame alive pod gmail.com. Call or text us at (208) 352-6348. That’s 2 0 8 Flame it. Our social handle is at Flame Alive Pod. Be sure to join the Keep the Flame Alive podcast group on Facebook. And don’t forget to get our weekly newsletter filled with other fun stories about this week’s episode.

You can sign up for that@flamelivepod.com.

[01:03:20] Jill: Oh, next. Next week’s a show. Right. Speaking of Paralympics . That’s right. We are so excited to bring you our interview with the armless Archer, Matt Stutzman. He will be on to talk about how the sport works and how he participates in it, so be sure to tune in for that.

Thank you so much for listening, and until next time, keep the flame alive.