"Cathy has a list of things she wants to do after Munich," says Mrs. Rigby. "She wants to go skiing and horseback riding, and she wants to make a quilt."
"After the Olympics I might try skydiving," says Cathy. "That would really scare me. They would probably have to push me out of the plane, and I would hope they'd push me. You know Bud would already have told everybody, 'She can do it.' "
Marquette frequently talks with amazement of Cathy's lack of fear. "When she does a trick," he says, "she never stops halfway. She always follows through. I could tell her to jump out of a fifth-floor window, and she would do it. Of course, she would expect me to be there to catch her."
Cathy Rigby weighs between 89 and 93 pounds. Her measurements are 32-23-31. She has 17" thighs. She wears a size three junior petite. Marquette calls her "Peanut" or "Shrimp."
"He doesn't want me to grow up," says Cathy.
"It changes the center of gravity," says Marquette, "and she may never regain her former sense of balance. Cathy still looks the way she did nine years ago when she joined the SCATs."
If Cathy Rigby had to write a composition entitled "What Gymnastics Means to Me," it would read like this: "Gymnastics has been my whole life. The best of it is that it has kept me from being bored. It has helped me set goals for myself and become a better person. Because I have to discipline myself and go down to the gym every day, I am happy with myself. It also helps me to do something for other people—for my coach and my family. I can make them be happy with me. I am getting an education out of it, just by being able to see what goes on in other countries, instead of reading about it. Because of gymnastics I am probably, right now, living the best part of my life. I don't think I will ever get a chance again to do as much as I do now."
However, she never had to write such a composition, which is the penalty imposed by Marquette upon any SCAT "who breaks the contract."
Marquette has set up such obvious rules as "no alcoholic beverages" and "no smoking," but the contract also includes a 10:30 p.m. curfew which is sometimes hard to observe. Therefore, he makes a point of calling up parents at night to make sure their daughters are home. "There is never any trouble with Cathy," he says.
Journalists have called Cathy Rigby "Pixie," "Kewpie doll" and " Barbie doll," much to her embarrassment. Still, since her blonde hair began to darken, she has dyed it regularly "to keep up the image" she says. "I would like to let my hair grow, but Bud wouldn't let me." Long hair is frowned upon by gymnastics judges. Cathy keeps her pigtails pinned back and fastened so tightly with ribbons that she gets headaches.