Olympic gold medal winner Amanda Beard is scheduled to talk about her book, "In the Water They Can't See You Cry: A Memoir," at an event in Tucson tonight.
In her book, the international swimming star reveals some of the demons she battled along the way to becoming an Olympian, including alcohol abuse, bulimia, cutting and depression.
The UA graduate won seven medals during four Olympiads. In 2008, Beard was inducted into the University of Arizona Sports Hall of Fame.
Beard, a Tucson resident, is scheduled to speak at 7 p.m. today - Thursday, April 18 - at Barnes & Noble, 5130 E. Broadway. The talk will coincide with the release of her book in paperback.
Anorexia has been in the news this week for two reasons:
1. Star Models, a division of Ford Models, released a disturbing set of anti-anorexia public service announcements called "You are not a Sketch."
The advertisements show fashion sketches of models with pictures of actual models who look like the sketches. The real women are emaciated and appear ill.
2. A journalist named Samantha Brick, who is well-known in England, wrote a column in a British newspaper yesterday exalting the fact that she's been on a diet for the past 30 years. She also brags about the fact that she once fainted from hunger, but that minor glitch was eclipsed by the fact that she was asked out on a lot of dates.
She declares that nothing signifies failure like fat.
Not surprisingly, she's been criticized for the messages her column will send to young women who are at risk for eating disorders. This is not a small worry, since eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness.