during the 2006 winter olympics in turin i developed an overweening and somewhat embarrassing crush on tempestuous skateuse IRINA SLUTSKAYA—she of the apple cheeks, mousy hair and how shall i put this—pleasing thickness that one does not normally associate with ice skaters.

Irina Slutskaya

something else one doesn’t normally associate with ice skaters is clothes you might actually want to wear yourself. but in 2006 russia had it goin on. their motif was a kind of cross between a paisley shape and a garland (or a zapf dingbat), and when applied to a straight-up indie gas-station attendant vibe i found the russian outfits almost as irresistable as a certain ice skater who wore them. (they also had their own twee mascot, the venerable cheburashka, who may have contributed to a new Olympic trend.)

it’s unnecessary to detail the hours i spent trying to track down the hoodie in the above photo. oh i was desperate, had taken leave of my senses. 1/2-inch enamel souvenir pins on ebay with the above garland/paisley design were enough to start me salivating. in the end i forgot about it. but here come the olympics again, taunting me with their inaccessible vestments, reminding me of the ones that got away. it appears that the company which made those russian outfits still have a web site and it’s being revamped. a dormant spark of hope flares up. are you out there, boscosport? do you do trackbacks? i’m an easy mark.