“Beautiful on the Outside” by Adam Rippon— Meet the Former Olympic Figure Skater

Rippon, Adam. “Beautiful on the Outside”, Grand Central Press, 2019.

Meet the Former Olympic Figure Skater

Amos Lassen

Adam Rippon is an Olympic athlete and medal-winning figure skater. We fell in love as we watched him skate but we never really got to know him. I find that when there are those that I want to know more about, it is always best to hear from them who they are. To do that, we have to wait till the person writes an autobiography and here is one that was worth waiting for. Rippon won the 2010 Four Continents Championships and the 2016 U.S. National Championships and was selected to represent the United States at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. He came out as gay in October 2015 and, at the 2018 Winter Olympics, won a bronze medal as part of the figure skating team event, and he became the first openly gay U.S. male athlete to win a medal in a Winter Olympics. He was named to the TIME 100 List of Most Influential People, Forbes 30 Under 30; AdWeek’s 100 Most Creative and OUT Magazine’s Power 50: The Most Influential Voices in LGBTQ America. He won season 26 of Dancing with the Stars: Athletes before going on to be a judge on the premiere season of Dancing with the Stars Juniors.

He has quite a pedigree and it is unique because he is an out gay male who was able to achieve all of this. To me he represents America’s changing opinions about those of us who were not so long ago considered to be abominations. Rippon shares his funny and inspiring personality in “Beautiful on the Outside” and it is that personality that draws us in.

Rippon shows that just below the surface, everything was an absolute mess. He traveled to practices on a Greyhound bus next to ex-convicts and he was once so poor that all he had to eat were free apples at his gym. He was able face and deal with the toughest times with a smile on his face, a twinkle in his eye, and a bon mot for anyone listening. We are with him on his journey from a homeschooled kid in Scranton, Pennsylvania, to a self-professed American sweetheart on the world stage. We learn of his disasters and self-delusions that he had to get through to get to be where he is now.

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