After watching Lolo Jones getting interviewed on NBC's "Today" show after
a fourth place finish, I couldn't help but wonder if she was auditioning for her
own reality show.
American had seen Jones morph into a self-promoting marketing machine after
her epic collapse in the 2008 Olympics, where she was within 10 meters of a
gold medal before choking on the final hurdle. But Jones turned failure into financial
success and enormous popularity, using the power of her exotic looks and one
strategically placed and controversial tweet to achieve it.
If Jones could turn her 2008 catastrophe into cash, she must be thinking that she
can snap her fingers and transform a fourth-place finish into pure gold. Jones was
on the "Today" show with Savannah Guthrie shedding tears because a writer for the
New York Times tagged her as the next Anna Kournakova, another woman blessed
with tremendous gifts from God's genetic tree, who made millions without ever having
won anything of significance.
Like Kournakova, Jones found her way onto magazine covers and talk shows where
nobody really wanted to talk about her talent, but rather gawk at her good looks. Jones
was invited on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" after finishing third in the U.S.
Olympics Trials. Great looks sell and so does anything that involves sex or a lack of it.
Before the trials started, Jones tweeted to the world that she was a virgin. She was a
20-something world class athlete blessed with a to-die-for body and stunning good looks
and Jones was a virgin! Wow! Now, that's a story.
Every television show looking for a bump in the ratings, just had to have Jones on
the set because her story was hot. She was trending on Twitter and was an internet
sensation. After squeaking out a third-place finish in the Olympic Trials, the Jones
hype-machine turned into high gear. She was on the cover of Time magazine (Again,
all because of a third-place finish and her virgin claim story).
Jones signed on with Dunkin' Donuts and appeared in several commercials. Other
athletes became jealous of Jones and her lack of accomplishments. But the media
continued to build up Jones, especially after she revealed that she had a life of hardship,
once having to live in the basement of a Salvation Army with her father-less family.
However, as many athletes like Tiger Woods, Michael Vick, an Brett Favre found
out, the media will build you up only to tear you down when you're flaws are exposed
and you fail to meet expectations. Jones, a golden girl without a gold medal. had
failed to get even a bronze in the 100-meter hurdles.
Now, Jones is crying about the criticism, which she surely had to know comes with
the territory, especially after using virginity to catapult herself into becoming a
household name and a millionaire. There won't be another Olympics for Jones, Father
Time has caught up with her. But like Brett Favre, Jones seems to be addicted to all
the attention thrust upon her. She needs it, lives off it, an can't do without it.
There is some television show out there looking to save itself with a spike in the ratings
that needs Lolo Jones. She auditioned for it on the "Today" show. I have little doubt
that she'll get it.