Mag Minute: Jackie Joyner-Kersee

June, 14, 2012
6/14/12
10:20
AM ET
"Mag Minute" is a regular feature in ESPN The Magazine. Below is a transcript of the interview with Olympic track star Jackie Joyner-Kersee from the Debate Issue.

[+] EnlargeJackie Joyner-Kersee
Chip Wass illustration
How has technology changed your sport?

When I started competing, you had to have your coach there. Now you can be coached from a home office via Skype or video. That’s not the same as having them on the field with you.

What’s your favorite Olympic memory?

Besides winning? That would be my bronze medal in 1996 because I never gave up on myself.

What’s one thing you always have with you?

My inhaler. I’ve had asthma my entire life.

What talent would you most like to have?

Dancing. People assuming that because I’m a great athlete, I can dance. But no. My rhythm is off a little bit.

What question are you asked most by fans?

Do you want to race?

What was your most unrealistic New Year’s resolution?

Not eating candy. I probably lasted a month.

What's your idea of a perfect day?

Temperature about 80 degrees, sun shining, a little breeze. And I’d be walking in the park, feeding the birds.

What TV show would you like to be a contestant on?

Any of the Housewives. But I’d go on as a counselor. I don’t like the drama.

Who would you want to play you in your biopic?

Tasha Smith. I like her personality, and I think she could get my demeanor.

What’s the biggest misconception about you?

That I’m shy. I’m not shy. I’m modest, but I’m very outgoing.

Who would you say is the most media-savvy athlete?

Kevin Durant. He’s young but poised.

If you were a talk show host, which celebrity would you want as your first guest?

Michelle Obama. Because of everything that she’s doing with fitness and promoting girls in sports. To have the First Lady pushing says a lot.

If you could go to dinner with one person, dead or alive, whom would it be? And where would you go?

Nelson Mandela. We’d have to go somewhere with food he would like, but I’m allergic to seafood. So we’d have to compromise.

What place in the world do you most want to visit?

Africa. I haven’t been to any parts of Africa.

What’s your least favorite chore?

Washing dishes. But I do it.

If you could have any super power, what would it be?

I would like “I dream of genie” powers.

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