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Clare Balding: Being a lesbian may have helped sports presenting career

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  1. I think what she has said could be true but what about when she is referring to female athletes could the opposite apply, by that I mean her attraction to the ladies? Just putting the question out there.

    I like Clare and think she is a superb presenter, one of the better ones on TV these days and wish she would do some other things and not just sport. I think she would make a great chat show host!

    1. Quite. Asexuals aside surely everyone’s attracted to someone.
      That’s usually where professionalism comes into play, though I have to admit I’d loose my train of thought at some point if I was interviewing the men’s diving team.
      I say “loose my train of thought”, it would most likely be cancelled due to smut on the line.

      1. haha you and me both. Just as well I have tickets for the Mens 10m Diving Final at the Olympics, getting my zoom lens ready!

    2. I think it’s a good point – what about physically attractive female athletes? are they invisible? – and also crossed my mind when I read the piece, I think the situation is different though because of the way the BBC and other TV companies constantly seek to present and act out the male-female couple stereotype on our screens (because, it seems, heteros need constant brainwashing about how to behave!). I think the brilliant Clare is simply stating that she has successfully managed to escape that trap.

  2. Yes Clair sweeping staments are always true.


    1. Paul. London/Essex 10 Jul 2012, 12:06pm

      Read her exact words again James! The only person generalising is yourself.

  3. Interesting to see Clare choosing to comment on mumsnet – not known for being particularly LGBT friendly!

    I don’t think she intended to be provocative – but think her comment genuinely is helpful.

    One thing for sure is that she is well respected as a broadcaster in her field.

  4. I think Claire Balding has done very well for herself and has been a real credit to the lesbian community. There’s been nothing that she has done that could have been said to damage the community in ways that others have. Aside from her sexuality, she’s a great presenter and you can tell that many people in the sporting world support her. Not sure I agree with her opinions here, I’ve not read the whole interview but she seems like a very normal and down to earth person despite being in the spotlight!

  5. So does this mean Anderson Cooper cannot objectively report from a war zone or from a fire station because he might find guys in uniforms hot? Guess he can only talk to the uniformed women.

    This is some crazy thinkin’, Clare.

    1. charmonium 10 Jul 2012, 3:11pm

      She didn’t say it makes her better or more objective! She said that *other people perceive* her that way.

    2. Exactly what Charmonium said and also believe me when I say I have had that from a few straight women when I’ve been around their husbands/boyfriends. They basically feel that i’m “safe”. Though completely the opposite with their husbands/boyfriends, who feel i’m a threat…lol..(can’t win)
      If you have a job like presenting than you have to be professional, I absolutely want to slap them silly if I see straight female presenters go all giggly, or straight males go all puffed up. Really straight people need to truly grow up and get over themselves.

    3. Whoops. Misunderstood her comments. Will eat crow for dinner…

  6. LOVE Clare Balding! best presenter on the Beeb (possible exception for Huw Edwards), was devastated BBC lost rights to Derby/National etc next year- channel four has nobody with her knowledge, charm and talent when it comes to the gee gees.

  7. Just read through the web chat on mumsnet

    I like how she responded to a question about the homophobia of AA Gill:
    “Thank you. I take most insults on the chin (it’s big enough!) but when it’s an attack that affects other people as well as me, I think it’s important to stand up and say “That’s enough.” I tried to do so without losing too much dignity – also important.”

    I also liked how she responded to questions about her and her partner, Alice.

    Great fun, light hearted interview with some gentle discussion of LGBT issues amongst sport, biscuits, hill walking and TV issues!

  8. She’s out and proud, which I admire her for, and she’s well respected in her field which is great. The comment is slightly assinine but I think she’s talking more of the way ‘others’ may percieve her. I’m glad she challenged the ‘dyke on a bike’ comment and she has my admiration for that, but I do sometimes find her a bit of a pratt….but my personal view of her personality is irrelevant here.

  9. Am I the only one who finds it slightly offensive that anyone would think that a female sports presenter might not be able to do her job properly because she’s distracted by the men? How patronising!

    Leaving that aside, it was good to read this interview. Clare comes across as a genuinely nice person.

    1. In a grown up world,your right Iris..but we don’t leave in a grown up world. I once shook one guys hand and later he found out I was gay. He said “I thought you were either gay or happily married”. I said “why” and he replied.” Because when straight women usually shake my hand,they don’t look you straight in the eye and give a firm handshake. They look down and to the side with a soft handshake. Now I know this is generalising and I know a number of straight women who shake like us dykes,however start watching them because really a lot do.

      1. Well, I will start watching for that now, Lorenza! :D An interesting observation. (And maybe it’ll help my completely cr*p girl gaydar too :D )

  10. i dont do Lezbian….unless they have a hairy chest……joke laugh …..

  11. Simply put – she’s very professional and deserves the plaudits she gets for her work with the BBC. End of issue!

  12. Don Harrison 14 Jul 2012, 11:03pm

    Good for Clare

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