Tuesday, 21 August 2012

‘I AM NOT MY NAILS’: Yohan ‘The Beast’ Blake claps back at his detractors

HANDS ON: Blake doing his now-signature Beast pose.

From the barbershop to the blogosphere, folks have been talking smack about The Beast lately, and frankly he wants you to know that he’s just sick of it – especially the nasty online comments about his decision to grow out his nails. Taking to his Facebook fan page earlier this week, the double Olympic silver-medallist sounded off on the criticism, rising above the negativity, and accepting himself for who he is. Below, the full text of Blake's message to his fans:

“When I congratulated and thanked ‘The Legend’ Usain Bolt I spoke about the criticisms we had to endure. Some of them are good, and I take them. But some of them are mean-spirited and are meant only to hurt.

I am aware of all the talk surrounding my nails, especially in Jamaica. It is amazing to me that after all the effort and hard work and dedication and discipline and success; this is what people choose to talk about. But for my true fans, I will explain:

First of all, my nails grow VERY fast for some reason. Almost as fast as I can run! Many years ago, long before this Beast nickname came about, so long ago that I can't even remember when or why, I got it into my head that if I cut them during competition, I won't run well. It is my superstition. There are many things we athletes do to alleviate the huge pressures that come with competing. Some of them just don't make any sense. But we do them anyway! This is what I do. Soon after competition, I cut them and look pretty "normal" again.

I know who I am. I know what my values are. And I know how proud I feel to have represented my country at the highest level and to the best of my ability. I am who I think I am. I am not who other people think I am supposed to be.

So I would like to thank my true fans and sponsors for accepting me for who I am, and I will continue to do my best for you.”

So there you have it, people. The fingernails are staying in the picture.

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  1. Way to go Yohan. Well said. Love it and Thank you and all the other athletes and sports persons for making us all so proud.

  2. Michael Jordon would not play Basketball if he didn't have on his University of North Carolina shorts on underneath his Bulls uniform so I think most athletes have a ritual or superstition unique to them. Leave Yohan alone, he isnt harming anyone cuz track is a no contact sport. After all the glory the man has brought Jamaica in less than a month we a try tear him down already. I dunno when we will change our dirty ways and just be happy for people and their success! kmt

  3. Yohan, it is said that we only stone ripe mango. If you had no value there would be no talk about you. It is all idle chatter anyway. Take it for what it is, as one wise old gentleman once said: "fodder for the cause." You have added great value to our country which is the result of discipline, dedication and hard work. You are a true representation of Jamaica's greatest aspiration. Keep up the good work as you continue to give God the credit for blessing you and keeping you.