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2010 Winter Olympics: Weir sports sparkles; curler is expecting

VANCOUVER — Johnny Weir is showing his patriotism — with sparkles.

The three-time U.S. figure skating champion wore armbands with colored crystals spelling out "U-S-A" in both English and Russian lettering to Monday morning's practice. The English version, worn around his right biceps, is done in gold — naturally.

"It was my idea," said Weir, who has similar bands with Japanese and Korean lettering.

Weir's interest in other cultures has earned him plenty of grief over the years. But appreciating other cultures and countries doesn't mean he doesn't love his own, Weir said.

"I always get hated on for not having enough outpouring of American patriotism. But I am and always have been very patriotic," he said."

PREGNANT ON ICE: Kristie Moore's baby bump isn't yet big enough to keep her from curling.

"So far, so good. I'm feeling great," said the Canadian, who's 5 1/2 months along. "No problems."

Skip Cheryl Bernard became concerned that Moore didn't want to join her Canadian team last fall for the Olympic trials because it took some time to get an answer.

The thing was, Moore was early on in her pregnancy and had yet to tell even her family. Once she did, Moore gladly accepted the invite to be the alternate. And here she is on the Olympic ice. The Canadians are expected to contend for a medal at home.

TAKING ADVANTAGE: Moguls skier Bryon Wilson's path to the medals stand should be told to elementary school kids.

It's not the usual Olympic ode to hard work or perseverance in the face of adversity. It's more a lesson about being ready in case opportunity knocks.

Wilson made the national team, but his spot was in jeopardy going into nationals last year. He needed to win to stay on the team, and he did.

In December, he was on the B team when a member of the A team got hurt, giving him a chance to compete in a World Cup race for the first time. A pair of second-place finishes earned him a permanent spot on the A team — and a trip to the Olympics.

The 21-year-old Wilson was a surprising third in qualifying, then surprised everyone again with another third-place finish.