Five favorite things with Tim Goebel

2002 Olympic bronze medalist watches reality television, enjoys dysfunction

Tim Goebel loves <i>Silence of the Lambs</i> and Dostoyevsky's <i>Crime and Punishment</i>, but he also squeezes in some trashy television.
Tim Goebel loves Silence of the Lambs and Dostoyevsky's Crime and Punishment, but he also squeezes in some trashy television. (Adam Spunberg)


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(06/20/2012) - American Tim Goebel, known by many as the "Quad King," captured bronze at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games, was twice a world silver medalist and won the 2001 national title. But once he completed his illustrious career on ice, he focused on his academics as a mathematics student at Columbia University.

These days, Goebel contributes to the sport when he can as a technical specialist and spectator, and he works as an analytic consultant for Nielsen. He hopes to get involved on the political side of figure skating someday, but for the time being, he is satisfied to cheer on fellow U.S. competitors -- that's when he's not watching The Real Housewives of New Jersey or lamenting Virginia Woolf. recently sat down with Goebel to discuss his favorite movies, television shows and leisure activities. What are some of your favorite movies?

Goebel: Forrest Gump. I love Forrest Gump. It is by far my favorite movie. I liked that, and then on the complete opposite side, Silence of the Lambs. What's your favorite reality show?

Goebel: I was following Jersey Shore, Jersey Housewives, Beverly Hills Housewives, Orange County Housewives and Atlanta. Atlanta is a spectacular mess of a show. It's one of those things where you're watching because you just marvel that people will act like that in public.

I did a lot of psych classes and I really enjoy dysfunctional people. To step outside and watch people just completely humiliate themselves is not enjoyable, but it's interesting. It's very interesting. What's your favorite leisure-time activity, apart from TV and movies?

Goebel: I really like to go to the gym. If I had the luxury of time, I would spend two or three hours a day at the gym. I love working out.

I do everything. I do a lot of lifting. I do cardio. I'm training for a 10-mile race, so I've been running a lot. I just like being active. What will be your favorite Olympic events in London?

Goebel: I watch pretty much everything. Obviously, I like the gymnastics. I like the diving, because it's kind of the same vein as what we do. The short distance swim. I can keep myself afloat in a pool. I'm not going to drown, but it just amazes me that somebody can move that fast in water. As a Columbia student, you took Literature Humanities as part of the Core Curriculum. What was your favorite book?

Goebel: Crime and Punishment by Dostoyevsky. I've probably read the book six times now. Some of the other stuff that we were forced to read was so painful. I particularly hated [Woolf's] To the Lighthouse. Painful beyond words.