BY MADELEINE MARR, mmarr@MiamiHerald.com
Johnny Weir is a winter boy, but he can handle Florida. In short stints, anyway.
“I love it there. It’s like the American version of an African safari with all the alligators and stuff,’’ says the Olympic figure skater, 26. “But I really am all about winter and my ice and my fur. The constant summer would drive me crazy!’’
Weir will zip in to town for the MAC Cosmetics conference Wednesday in Miami Beach and check out the holiday 2011 collection. He uses the beauty brand’s bronzer, powder, and a lip conditioner during performances. He’ll also show off his blade moves for a VIP audience on a special “rink’’ covered with something called “plice,’’ a type of plastic ice.
“I’m not so happy about that,’’ Weir says of the synthetic. “I’ll be flopping around in this giant ballroom. I’ll try my best because who doesn’t want to start summer with a little ice skating?’’
After the conference, Weir will fly back home to New Jersey, to resume filming season 2 of his LOGO reality show, Be Good Johnny Weir, which documents his often “whirlwind,’’ wacky life as athlete, designer (he has a collection of little black dresses on edressme.com) and author. His recent memoir, called Welcome to My World, discusses how it feels to be an out gay celebrity.
“It’s hard to tell you about all my projects without sounding obnoxious,’’ the Pennsylvania native admits. “To be frank, figure skaters don’t get as many opportunities that I have. I consider myself very, very lucky.’’
What’s definitely not on the agenda: judging a season 2 of Skating with the Stars.
The ABC reality show did not get picked up. Weir, who famously sparred with show contestant Bettheny Frankel, doesn’t have a problem with that.
“There was a lot of drama surrounding her,’’ he allows. “We both felt disrespected by one another. Being strong people, it obviously came out. I definitely don’t hold a grudge, but her reality show doesn’t have any place in my life.’’
Weir is a fan of the other Real Housewives of New York City, though. He says he is friends with Jill Zarin and Sonja Morgan.
“It’s very clear with all these Housewives. They’re all millionaires, they have so many side projects. As long as you work hard and believe in yourself, you can do anything. As a runner of my own empire, I can learn from those girls.’’