Adam Rippon: A new star on the world stage

by MK Scott

Regardless if you have been watching the Winter Olympics, currently in PyeongChang, South Korea, you have definitely been hearing the name Adam Rippon, who has been very Out and vocal in every interview and performance. Back in 2010, we had Johnny Weir, who wasn’t officially Out yet. But with Rippon, he is just acting himself. From bonding with Out skier, Gus Kenworthy, or flirting with Out Canadian skater, Eric Radford on the podium after winning the Bronze, while Radford won gold, to being downright straightforward and refusing to meet or acknowledge Vice-President Mike Pence, we can’t get enough of Rippon and he has already made history. Here are some of his and Kenworthy’s best quotes:

February 9th
‘The #OpeningCeremony is a wrap and the 2018 Winter Olympic Gaymes are officially under way!’ he wrote. ‘I feel incredibly honored to be here in Korea competing for the US and I’m so proud to be representing the LGBTQ community alongside this amazing guy! Eat your heart out, Pence. #TeamUSA #TeamUSGay’ – Kenworthy

‘Tonight I walked in the #OpeningCeremony and got to watch my old friend @Yunaaaa light the Olympic flame. Representing the USA is one of the greatest honors of my life and being able to do it as my authentic self makes it all so much sweeter.’ – Rippon

February 11th
On condoms in the Olympic Village
‘Like, I’m not entirely sure what I was expecting. I thought maybe they’d have like Olympic rings on them or they’d be all different colors. But, no. It’s all a myth,’ – Rippon

February 12th
When VP Pence tweeted @Adaripp I want you to know we are FOR YOU. Don’t let fake news distract you. I am proud of you and ALL OF OUR GREAT athletes and my only hope for you and all of #TeamUSA is to bring home the gold. Go get ’em!’

Rippon responded that he has no interest in meeting after the Olympics with Pence, the former Indiana governor who has been perceived as showing a lack of support of LGBT rights and once supporting so-called gay conversion therapy.

‘I’m going to go to Target and I’m going to get a bottle of Sauvignon blanc, Oyster Bay, with the twist top, immediately.’ – Rippon

February 13th
Press Conference with Adam Rippon

On Valentine’s Day
‘Nobody loves me as much as I love me; so I guess I’ll just be my own Valentine tomorrow.’

On newfound superstardom
‘The other day I was joking to one of my friends. He was like, ‘You’re kind of everywhere right now.’ I was like, ‘I know; I’m America’s sweetheart.’ He laughed in my face.’

On confidence (and Oprah)
‘Sometimes when you’re not confident in yourself, to see someone who doesn’t care – and I don’t care anymore; I really don’t care – it gives you that confidence. I remember seeing people who I thought were so confident and exuberant. I remember being young and watching Oprah and being like, ‘Damn. That lady is so confident. She can talk to anybody.’

On coping with depression
‘To watch Mirai Nagasu go out there and also skate a clean free skate… I mean, we’ve really been through a lot together. Four years ago, we were eating In-N-Out on the roof of her house in Arcadia, California, and we were crying that we weren’t at the Olympics. And four years later, we’re sharing an Olympic podium together. So, if you’re ever depressed, go to In-N-Out, and four years later you’ll be at the Olympics!’

On the age difference between his teammates
‘Vincent and I were born in different millennia. We were! I was born in the ’80s, girl… No electronics. No phone. The Berlin Wall came down when I was, like, born. The internet was, like, invented when Vincent was born. So we’re definitely different.’

On the haters and skeptics
‘People have told me, ‘Oh, you’re a lot different than what I thought.’ I say, ‘Oh, what did you think?’ They’re like, ‘Oh, we just thought you were an ass.’ I’m like, ‘Oh& yikes.’ I’m just trying to share who I am, my personality… Sometimes I might meet people and they might just not like me, not want to get to know me. And that’s okay. They’re boring as hell anyway.’


The Story was originally published in Seattle Gay News

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