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Speed Kills> ... My impression is that it's political correctness: Sprinters are "supposed" to be poor black kids....
oops! > I think it's the in-bred look that's hurting him....
Moving to Bucharest�> Why don't his sunglasses fall off when he runs?
Oh, there may be a few things to say about him, how he came to look and talk and do the startling things he did in Athens. But trust me, he's so modest and mild that you'd never dream he'd stir up such a ruckus on the websites and message boards back home.
Not that he was always so mellow. In fact, he was downright devilish as a child, absolute murder in a movie theater. He would lose the plot in no time, launch out of his seat and up the aisle five times a flick. He'd lose focus in class, start fidgeting and whispering, then turn red when the teacher asked him a question. On road-melting summer days in Arlington, Texas, when his parents were at work and all his older sister and brother wanted to do was go slack-jawed in front of their favorite TV shows, Jeremy's pestering would make them so crazy that they'd invite him to follow them through an upstairs bedroom window onto the roof, then slip back inside and lock the window, marooning him up there for the rest of the day.
But the Ritalin worked. Told he had attention deficit disorder after nearly failing first grade, he resisted the medication at first because it sapped his energy. But his sister, Jennifer, who often looked after him, wouldn't stand for it. "I don't care if he doesn't want it!" she'd yelp. "Shove it down his throat like you do a dog!"
The kid took the pills and chilled. School became bearable once he could remain calm, blend in with the other kids and scrape by. He was actually a gentle, shy boy who loathed attention and conflict; he'd fall silent or walk away when either one reared its head in a classroom or on the ballfields where he spent his free time.
From his parents he received no athletic legacy. His father, a landscape designer and as down-to-earth a man as you'd ever meet, grew up with a clubfoot that wasn't surgically repaired until he was 19, and Jeremy's mother, a paralegal, didn't play sports in school. But they bequeathed him something else, maybe rarer: an openness to people of all colors and creeds. At the day-care center that his mom opened in their home when he was a toddler, Jeremy played with Hot Wheels with a boy who was half-Taiwanese and listened to stories alongside two boys from India. He pieced together puzzles with a pair of African-American boys and raced around the house with the two half-Japanese boys who lived behind him.
"I was brought up," he says, "to believe that a person is a person."
RE: Why isn't Jeremy Wariner more popular?