Amy Chen, Scion of Hermes

[Excerpt from an interview with young gymnast and athlete Amy Chen on China Central Television., first broadcast June 1st 2007. Trans.]

CCTV: Good morning everyone. We’re here today for an interview with one of China’s most exciting young athletes, and one of our biggest stars at the DOHA Games in 2006, please welcome, Amy Chen!

*Chen skips onto stage waving frantically – short cropped black hair, a red and white striped tee and skinny jeans over red Converse All-Stars*

AMY: Hiiiiii!

CCTV: And hello to you Amy. Please take a seat. So tell us, how is life after that stunning final round victory at DOHA?

AMY: *grin* Great, good, better than good. Awesome! Life is so awesome. I loved DOHA. Lots of fun.

CCTV: And China loved watching you Amy. But tell me, how did you pull off that performance? I don’t think it’s overstating the case to say it was a phenomenal display. How does a girl of fifteen achieve such high standards of professional athleticism in such a short time?

AMY: *frowns thoughtfully, kicking her shoes together* I don’t know. I guess it just comes down to faith. Faith in your abilities, and in your support network. In your family.

CCTV: Well, your faith is inspiring. One of our younger viewers has written in – “Amy. You are the best, and you have a pretty face. When you run it’s like you float on air. I want to be just like you when I grow up.” Heartwarming stuff Amy.

AMY: *giggles nervously* Yeah. Really cute. Go for it! *Thumbs up sign to camera*

CCTV: But tell us Amy, you mentioned faith in your family. Have you never felt hampered by the fact that you come from a…non-nuclear family?

AMY: No. Never, not for a second. I mean, I understand why that seems to strange to people here but my mother is soooooo supportive and cool, and my father checks in when he can. He’s very supportive really. I couldn’t have got through DOHA without him.

CCTV: Ah yes, this mysterious father of yours. Aren’t you annoyed by your mother’s vehemence on keeping him out of the public eye? It is rather odd.

AMY: *pouts* Not really. I support her totally. I mean, he’s a very quiet, gentle man. He deserves his privacy. It’s the least I can do after…

CCTV:…the accident?

AMY: *pause* Yeah. I mean, until you’re in that situation, seeing all your hopes and dreams get swept away, you can’t understand the gratitude I feel toward him. I mean if he hadn’t come through with that money for the operation….*awkward pause*

CCTV: We wouldn’t have seen that amazing high bar routine in 2006! *nervous laughter*

AMY: *smiles softly* Yup. I owe Dad a lot. And my mother, I mean, I’ve only known Dad for a few years. Mom’s been there for like, forever. *wry face, roll of eyes*

CCTV: *once laughter subsides* So, what next for our child star? Victory at Beijing in 2008?

AMY: *Huge grin* You betcha! I’m going to ace it. You just wait!

CCTV: We’re all behind you Amy. And what about outside of gymnastics? What do you do for fun?

AMY: Oh, I’m waaay into gadgets. Palmpilots, iPod’s, can I say iPod? Anyway, laptops, Nintendo DS. Animal Crossing! *grins to camera* I’ve even still got my Tamagotchi.

CCTV: Wow. Impressive stuff.

AMY: They’re just like gymnastics really. It’s all focus and precision. I think I might take up Parkours soon though. Get out and about a bit. My Dad’s been teaching me. He says it’s great. The city sport of the future. And…

CCTV: I’ll have to stop you there Amy, as we’re out of time, but you heard it here first. Parkour champions of the world, your days are numbered. Ladies and gentlemen, Amy Chen!

*Amy gets up and bows briefly before skipping off to rapturous applause*

[End Excerpt.]