One of the most popular athletes in the world just won her third world
championship and nobody else has done that except Peggy Fleming.
Kathie Lee: Yea.
R: Yea. Anyway,
this past weekend in France, it happened. Here she is, the great
figure skater, Michelle Kwan!
Michelle is wearing
the same thing she wore on the Today show
earlier...a black top with black pants, and black sandals with gems
on them. Her hair looks nice, having more volume than how it looked
at Worlds. The front of her hair is parted to one side, with the
ends falling a little onto her face. Her ends are curled out a bit.
You can see her lucky necklace through the neckline of her shirt.
She comes out waving.
Then, she puts on sunglasses, and poses. This is because earlier
in the show, Regis was talking about, and showed off, his new expensive
sunglasses. Michelle has the same pair!
KL: You go girl!
Michelle puts her
hands on her hips, posing again. Regis rushes to put his pair on,
and they both pose together. It's really cute. She laughs and takes
the sunglasses off.
R: Look at Michelle
Michelle shakes Regis's,
then Kathie Lee's hands.
KL: Hello, sweetie.
So nice to see you.
R: What a cute...
to you. What an accomplishment.
MK: Thank you.
They sit down
R: Yes, what a
cute little package you are. (Michelle and the audience laugh)
KL: Those are
the littlest toes except for a baby I've ever seen.
R: Oh, and I love
those shoes. Did you get those on the sunset strip?
Closeup on Michelle's
R: Well, actually,
you live in Los Angeles, don't you, Michelle?
R: And you attend
UCLA in between your championships?
KL: Your spare
MK: Do homework
whenever I can. (Laughing)
R: Anyway, they
tell me that she gets sick after a fierce competition.
R: Always catch
KL: It's like
your body knows when it can get down, right?
KL: It's always
on vacation for me.
MK: That's terrible.
KL: It is, because
you're just ready to have a good time. Your body says don't have
to work. (Makes a snorting noise, Michelle laughs.)
MK: After a competition,
always, my body just goes down.
R: What about
if you get it just before your competition?
R: Does it weaken
you for the event?
KL: You probably
don't, do you much?
MK: (with a
sort of upset look on her face) Last year, before the World
Championships, I got sick. And...it was not good.
KL: How many hours
a day do you still train?
MK: I'd say, three
on the ice, and then off-ice training, like on the treadmill and
R: Three hours
a day on the ice, every day?
KL: It's all consuming,
KL: It has to
KL: to compete
at that level, it has to be.
MK: Well, it was
hard because when I first started UCLA, I (sighing), took
a full load of classes, and then I had to skate, and my skating
went down because I could only skate, like, one hour a day.
MK: And, I was
still competing at the time. And, it was just, I didn't feel good
about my skating. So, I'm taking less classes, and I'm able to skate
KL: It's such
a tricky thing, because, when you're at your peak physically as
an athlete is when you want to...
KL: I don't mean
cash in in a negative way, but that's when you need to be doing
that. And, and, college is something you could do at anytime.
MK: I, I don't...the
experience I want from college, I don't think you can wait.
MK: Because I
wanted to be 18 or 19, when you start. I don't want enter college
when I'm 30.
KL: What, an old
lady at 30? (Michelle laughs) Is that what you're trying
R: That's exactly
what she said!
R: So, now you're
at UCLA, and when championship time comes around, do you continue
to go to school? Or do you take a semester off? How do you handle
MK: I continue
R: Uh huh
MK: Um, but I
take less of a load.
R: You live with
a roommate at the dormitory...
MK: I did live...
R: Who is obsessed
with the millionaire show.
KL: That's why
she doesn't want to live with her, right?
puts her hand to her head.
MK: Well, see,
on my floor, there's only about 4 TVs, and I had a TV, I brought
a TV into my dorm room. And so whenever it came on, it was like,
"Party in Michelle's room!" (Audience laughs) Yea,
and, uh, my roommate would call (makes signal of a phone with
her hands). She would miss class to call!
R: To call in
to try to be on the show.
MK: Yea, to try
to be a contestant.
R: (To Kathie
Lee, who is trying to back out of being on the celebrity edition
of Who Wants to be a Millionaire that tapes on Friday.) People
are dying to be a contestant, and you don't want to be on!
would you like to do celebrity Millionaire on Friday?
R: We'll be right
MK: (over audience
applauding) Oh, I... (cut off because of the commercial break...would
have liked to have heard her answer, but she couldn't do it anyway
since she's on tour.)
R: Michelle Kwan,
one of the great skaters in the world today. Uh, besides Peggy Fleming,
I think you're the only female to win three world championships
like that. It's quite a thrill.
MK: I'm still
on cloud nine, I can't believe it.
R: Oh, good for
you! (Audience applauds) Came in, uh, won the silver medal
in the 1998 Olympics. Is it NAgano or NaGAno?
R: Right. Now,
what about the gold, about going for the gold in a couple of years
for the 2002 Olympics?
MK: Geez, uh!
I can't even think. (Puts hands to her head.)
KL: You have enough
to do, Michelle.
MK: In four years...well,
it's been '98, '99...it's 2000 already.
KL: It's only
MK: Two years
R: Yea, it's two
MK: But, it will
be incredible. It's going to be in Salt Lake City. And in the states...can
see the American flags...(pretends to wave a flag)
R: Oh, sure! You've
got to try for it, you've got to do it!
KL: I was just
out there last week. It's a great, great place. Wonderful people.
(Michelle nods her head.) You know, it's a goal.
KL: Not necessarily
one you're going to have to reach, right? But you have to have something
you work towards, I suppose, just to keep you going with that grind.
MK: You know,
it's funny, because a lot of people have come up to me, and say,
you know, "Go for the gold! Go for this, and you'll get it."
I don't think about just the gold medal, because I can't justify
all my hard work, all the four years I wait, for that 6 minutes
that I'm on the ice.
MK: Four years...
R: Uh huh
down to (with her hands, makes a small measure) that 6 minutes.
KL: Life is a
lot bigger than that.
MK: Yea, it's
not life or death.
KL: Well, good
for you, you've got a good attitude.
R: You'll make
up your mind about that later on, I guess.
she starts a national tour, all around the country. (Michelle
nods her head.) Champions on Ice. It starts this Thursday where?
MK: In Baltimore.
R: Oh, in Baltimore.
MK: But we'll
be in New York next week.
R: Back here,
to New York next week.
MK: You're invited!
KL: Thank you.
R: Thanks so much.
Thanks so much for coming Michelle.
Michelle shakes both
of their hands.
R: Here you are
your glasses. (Regis hands her sunglasses back to her) Put
They both put their
pair of sunglasses on, and pose again.
R: Yea Baby! Huh!
MK: (To Kathie
Lee) We need to get you a pair!
R: We'll be right
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Photo © Jay Adeff