Monday, December 11, 2006

Idle threat of the week

Amongst the blur of Sunday football watching, I couldn't help but notice figure skater and 2006 Olympic silver medalist Sasha Cohen twirling around the ice in a televised skating exhibition. When I met with the panel of judges last night I mentioned this, and that I had been seeing a lot of Sasha Cohen lately.

The panel agreed that Sasha Cohen has been all over the place -- odd when we are more than three years away from the next Winter Olympics. We were even able to unearth evidence that suggests Cohen -- through exhibitions, advertising, personal appearances and television roles -- is actively branding herself for a "second act."

Suddenly, the panel realized what was afoot. Sasha Cohen, who was once synonymous with the name Sasha Cohen, is attempting to reclaim the only name she has ever known from the British comedian Sacha Cohen, who burst on the scene this summer to emerge as the undisputed champion of "Sac/sha Cohen."

There hasn't been a real, full on name battle since the late 80's when Paul Simon, the bow-tie wearing Illinois Senator, launched a serious presidential bid and threatened to bump Paul Simon, the singer and songwriter, from the perch of Paul Simon domination he had held since the mid-60's.

Despite its obvious gravity, the Simon challenge lacked the expected rancor. The two Simons even appeared together on Saturday Night Live to defuse any rumors of tension. This absence of killer instinct didn't serve Senator Simon in national politics, and his presidential aspirations fizzled while the other Paul Simon's fame remained on an even keel.

While you can question Senator Simon's tactics, you can't question his goal -- the highest office in the land has the ability to slay any name-hoarding dragon. Sasha Cohen, on the other hand, would struggle to challenge Sacha Cohen even if her attempts to recast herself a C-list celebrity are an unequivocal success.

Sadly, the only real options the cherubic 22-year old has to mount a serious threat to the ubiquitous comedian is to release a sex tape or hire a hit man to take out one of her skating rivals. But as Tonya Harding -- who tried both -- can attest, that just buys you about six months on the B-list.

Sasha Cohen should be focusing all of her energies on the 2010 Olympics and capturing the gold that has so far eluded her. Movie cameos will never return her to her previous role as world's premier Sasha Cohen. Although they have helped her add Idle Threat of The Week for December 4th to 10th to her trophy case.

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