• Thu, Sep 6 2012

Gabby Douglas Is Publishing A Memoir At Age 16 — Let’s Discuss Why That Didn’t Work For Me

Olympic gold-medalist Gabby Douglas of ‘Most Adorable Gymnast Ever’ fame has announced that she’s writing an ‘inspirational memoir’. Or maybe already has written, because it’s scheduled to come out in December of this year, just three months from now. The memoir will be titled Grace, Gold and Glory, My Leap of Faith and will be about (duh) her road to the gold medal, including leaving her home at age 12 to get serious with her training, and going all the way up to her gold medal at the London Olympics.

See, I have to be a little bit of a hypocrite for a second, because usually when someone writes a memoir under the age of…let’s say thirty, I’m like, “Shut up, you don’t even know anything about your life yet and you haven’t done anything, shut up.” (I would make a truly wonderful book critic.) Especially when people who are even younger than me write memoirs, it’s hard for me to get past that, because I still totally feel like a lost little kid. But in this case, I have to acknowledge that Gabby Douglas has kinda sorta done something with her life, even though she’s only 16. She kinda sorta got herself to the Olympics and then kinda sorta won some medals there. Namely gold ones, for the American team and for her own performance in the All-Around.

I mean, yeah, is this book partly being rushed out due to the money involved? Absolutely. Gabby has said, “Even before I competed in the Olympics, I always wanted to write a book,” but it’s pretty fortuitous that her Olympic win and the publishing of her book are both happening within a six month period. Gotta capitalize on those fond American memories. That said, I’d really like to just take a second to imagine what my memoir would’ve sounded like, had I written one as a 16-year old.

It would’ve been titled, Gawky, Giggly and Gangly, My Heap of Limbs and it would’ve chronicled my struggle to win the gold medals in ‘Being Liked In High School’ — All-Around and Team. (Spoiler alert: I did not medal in that sport.) I could’ve spent pages on my embarrassing tendency toward being a teacher’s pet, and a whole chapter would’ve been dedicated to my finally getting my boobs…and subsequently finally getting friends. I could’ve made diagrams instructing teenage girls on exactly how to dry their hair so as to best resemble a damp cocker spaniel, and which color rubber bands to select for your braces to most effectively repulse gentlemen when you open your mouth to ask them to prom. And of course would’ve done all the illustrations myself — as long as by ‘illustrations’ you meant emo Myspace-y pictures shot downward from arm distance away with a coy smile and my features all bleached out so you can’t see my acne.

In short, it would be an epic tragi-comedy, and I can’t imagine why it wouldn’t fly off the shelves just as fast as Gabby Douglas’ memoir, except that she’s approximately fourteen thousand times more (awesome/talented/self-assured/humble/ ) than I am now, even nine years later. And there’s that whole ‘Olympic gold medal’ thing.

I just thought of a new title for my memoir: FML.

(Image: Ivan Nikolov / WENN.com)

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