The following is a letter from a Georgetown student and regular Casual Hoya contributor addressed to Olympic gold medalist swimmer and DC-area native Katie Ledecky offering her a date at a Georgetown basketball game. The odds of her taking the author up on his offer may be slim, but that will not deter the author from trying and making a couple of jokes (including one out of himself) in the process.
My name is Roey Hadar and I’m writing to invite you to join me at a Georgetown Hoyas men’s basketball game sometime this season. It’s my senior year and I’ve been looking for a way to make this season even more fun than it already will be, and then I turned on my TV last month & caught some of the Olympics. And there you were, in the swimming events, blowing everyone away and doing it with a smile on your face. Natural talent definitely helps, but to get that good, that much better than everyone else requires determination. I admire that. And plus, I think you’re cute, ok? So let this open letter also serve as an invitation for a date.
From what I have seen, you definitely seem like a good person. I’ll admit that it’s hard to gauge that considering that I’ve only seen you on TV & online, but you’ve been very well composed in your interviews, and that cannot be said about every other Olympic swimmer. And plus, it seems like your talents translate to athletic pursuits other than swimming. I saw that first pitch you threw at the Nationals game after coming back home to DC. If I were at the plate, I probably would have swung and missed, because that was a damn good breaking ball! And plus, you turned Bryce Harper into a human gold medal coat rack, and I believe that means you also helped him complete his campaign to “Make Baseball Fun Again.”
Now, a bit about me. I hope that you also think I’m cute. For your consideration, I’ve put a picture showing how I look like below:
Now here I am in my natural habitat, the basketball game, being aggressively straightforward while promoting Georgetown’s Relay for Life to benefit cancer research:
This will be my last year here at Georgetown and I stumbled into being a big fan & a regular attendee at basketball games. Because I like the spotlight and have very little shame, I dance around like no one is watching and usually end up on some screen, either a JumboTron or a TV camera. I started doing it after a dare from friends of mine freshman year. I somehow ended up earning the nickname “Gyration Master.” I had mixed feelings about the name at first, but I ran with it. Eventually it led to a writing gig here on Casual Hoya, a site that nominally covers Georgetown basketball but really serves as a place for people to post pictures of their lunches and have lengthy debates about Bruce Springsteen songs or whether or not a hot dog is a sandwich.
Off the court, I’m also pretty fun. People like to say I’m smart because I can do things like name all the Presidents in order and tell you which swimmer held the record for most gold medals in a single Olympics before Michael Phelps won eight in Beijing. My two big interests are sports and politics but I try to know a little bit about everything. I also love to find good food, binge-watch comedies on Netflix, and travel to new places. I even took a nine thousand-mile, three-week cross-country road trip this summer. For what it’s worth, I can’t swim very well anymore and I’m lucky if I can tread water. I did, however, once win a gold medal for swimming in the third grade when I came in under the weather on a Saturday morning to swim laps of my elementary school pool for charity. Despite having a bad cold, I swam more laps than anyone else and received a special medal. So I guess that’s something you and I have in common.
Besides the fact that you’ll have the chance to enjoy a game with a real stud, another great perk of coming to a Hoyas game is that you’ll have the chance to join the amazing Georgetown fans. There are a bunch of games to choose from between November and February, and hopefully you’ll be able to make it back home to DC then. I’ve heard you’re heading to Stanford now and that’s probably during both your semester and swim season, but hopefully you’ll be able to get out for a weekend or maybe come to a game over your winter break. (And even if not, I’d be honored to take you out for a date other than a basketball game if you happen to be home some other time. We can get a meal at Tombs, since I’ve heard it’s one of your favorites. I’m not sure what NCAA rules are when it comes to paying for an athlete on a date, but if they allow for it, it’ll be my treat!) In the event this actually does work out, here are a few games that would either be mutually convenient or particularly worth your while. You can always pick another game, but these are ones that I think might work well:
- Sat. 1/14, 12:00 PM vs. Connecticut- This one is over a long weekend, which may enable schlepping back across the country, but it’s also the first time old Big East rival UConn makes it back to the Verizon Center since leaving the conference. MLK Weekend games tend to be some of the best-attended Hoya home games of the season. Also, both teams look to be competitive this year, so in terms of which game may be best across the board in terms of convenience, quality, and attendance, this would be the one.
- Sat. 3/4, 12:00 PM vs. Villanova- Since Syracuse is not coming to DC this season, Georgetown’s biggest rivalry matchup at home will be vs. defending national champions Villanova. Student fans always show up in big numbers for ‘Nova, and should still do so even though this game will be on the first day of the school’s spring break. Not just that, but it will also be both Senior Day and the day of the annual Casual Extravaganza (read: Internet commenters finally meet each other in real life & drink a lot.) It’s usually held at the 21+ bar Penn Social, but if this is the day you choose to take up the offer, I’m sure CX can be moved to somewhere with a more lenient entry policy.
- Tues. 11/15, 6:30 PM vs. Maryland- OK, so you’re probably not going to be in town on a Tuesday in mid-November, but this will be one hell of a game! Georgetown and Maryland have finally decided to play each other and a great local rivalry has started brewing. Maryland is also one of the top teams in the country and Georgetown fans should come out in droves (but then again, so will the Maryland fans…) The student section will be particularly lit for this one. It might even be worth the trip!
- The winter break games—Thurs. 12/22, 6:30 PM vs. UNC-Greensboro; Sat. 12/31, 11:00 AM vs. Xavier; Sat. 1/7, 12:00 PM vs. Butler- We’ll be lucky to have two-and-a-half students attend games over winter break, but in terms of days where this unlikely project actually has a chance at materializing, one of these may end up being the best bet. With nearly all students outside DC over break (including me, since I’ll be home in New Jersey,) these games are not exactly an accurate representation of what a Georgetown men’s basketball game should look like, but if this does in fact happen, I’ll be willing to accommodate and make the trip back down here for the game. Plus, both Butler and Xavier have very strong teams, which should make for a good matchup on the court, even if only a couple of people show up to see it.
For whichever game you choose, I will be happy to get there early as I usually do and save you a front row seat. Hoya Blue, the student group that coordinates the student section, would probably be willing make a cardboard “big head” cutout of you, as they have done for the faces of other public figures ranging from Pope Francis to Barney the Dinosaur. Pretty much every member of this blog would also be willing to give you one of our signature “Casual” headbands, modeled in this photograph here by yours truly. If you come for a Saturday game, I may also be able to get my roommates to agree to host an authentic Georgetown party in your honor.
So let’s make this happen! Your fellow US Olympic Gold Medalist Aly Raisman took up an online date offer from some backup tight end on the Raiders, so there’s a bit of a precedent here. Also, I’ve read that you have already taken a couple of classes on the Hilltop, meaning that this probably won’t be too much of a step out of your comfort zone and you can probably even use your GOCard (if you still have one) to get into the student section. We’re big with hashtag activism here at Casual Hoya, so I’m going to ask the blog’s readership for help as #GyrationMasterGoesForGold. A bit of a mouthful, but considering you’re now a “Golden Girl” and I have this almost laughably dumb nickname, it makes enough sense.
See you at one of the games (or at least at The Tombs sometime!)