Yes, it was a back story worthy of Extreme Home Improvement. Yes, his natural skills made him seem a suspense sapping, unbeatable talent. But nonetheless, I found myself beguiled by him charm, thrilled with his performances, touched by his story and delighted for his semi-inevitable victory. JR was one of the few triumphant aspects of this year’s Dancing With The Stars which for the first time in many years is being overshadowed, in competition quality and production values, by its poorer parent in the UK, Strictly Come Dancing (and suffering its weakest ratings while SCD is the highest ever).
And the fascination with JR’s performance made it all the way over to the UK with the Sunday Times featuring a piece by Christina Lamb on him, ‘Dancing with the Scars’. One of the most touching dimension to JR’s charm is his embrace of his horrific disfigurement. So positive is his outlook that, according to the interview…
“Martinez has had a watch tattooed on this left wrist set to the date and time of his bombing – 2:30 on April 5, 2003. If not for that bomb, he said, ‘my life would not be what it is today – full of joy, happiness and positivity.’ “
That’s embracing failure as well as some awfully fine footwork.